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Text Alerts?

Discussion in 'What's Going On' started by buseng, Jun 7, 2010.

  1. 60017

    60017 Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    The majority of people just want to know if its running on or close to time. 20 updates per tour may be a little excessive from one person ?
     
  2. malc

    malc Part of the furniture

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    Who does this 12p per message go to? Nat Pres? The phone companies? Does any go to the tour promoter or loco owners?

    Rather than having to subscribe for all messages, would it not be possible to just request an update of the tour's progress when you need it?

    e.g. send a message such as "NATPRES [TOURCODE] UPDATE" to receive just the nost recent message, or "NATPRES [TOURCODE] UPDATE [N]" to receive the last N messages for the tour.
     
  3. admin

    admin Founder Administrator

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    Aye you can, text "NATPRES [TOURCODE] start" to start your updates and "NATPRES [TOURCODE] stop" to stop them.

    The majority of the funds go to charges and fees. Nat Pres Ltd gets very little in return for maintaining the system.
    We did discuss donations to the tour's / loco owners / locos etc but the amount would of been a few pound if that. Not really worth it unless we charged £1 per text, and that was not really going to be an option.

    Once the system becomes more established we can look at these ideas in the future.
     
  4. malc

    malc Part of the furniture

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    I was thinking of just a one shot thing i.e. send a single request, get a single response back with the latest info. A problem with the START .. STOP thing is that if you send START too early, you may receive (and pay for) lots of messages you don't need, but, if you send START too late, you will not receive anything until somebody next posts a message and that may be too late.

    My suggestion was akin to the following - Q. "What's the latest news on the tour?" A. "It passed Anytown on time".
     
  5. Live Steam

    Live Steam Well-Known Member

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    Think it's a brilliant idea! Get to the station, text to start, receive a few texts to know where the ol' girl, text to turn off again. 25p for safe knowledge of how long I'll be waiting! Brillopads!
     
  6. admin

    admin Founder Administrator

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    The only issues with that is, it's not currently designed to work that way.
    I might be able to work in a system where as it might work like the above, however this will not be immediately available.
     
  7. Alberta 45562

    Alberta 45562 Part of the furniture

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    Long distance tours....such as the coronation or the cornish riviera. If there is a problem people like to stay informed? I wouldn't use it anyway as i prefer Yahoo because its free for quick messages,i see it is advertised on UK Steam Info,the problem could be if people start with about 8 reports of something passing Hemerdon or Shap or something like that.....

    With Gen postings on the groups you often get about 10 or 15 on the same tour,sometimes about 3 in the same place.

    This system definetly has its plus points,but sadly would be too costly for me and probably others to use.
     
  8. admin

    admin Founder Administrator

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    I have taken this snippet on board, and I over the next 30 days, will look at sponsorship etc.
    Don't forget this has been live for 2 days. We are learning lots from people like yourself, on how to possibly improve on the system.
     
  9. simon

    simon Resident of Nat Pres

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    Perhaps a small charge to the sender, might make people think before posting every five minutes. Just a thought.
     
  10. Steve from GWR

    Steve from GWR Well-Known Member

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    Just thinking aloud here really.

    Is it possible to set the system up so that it only texts out every (say) 15 minutes - on the hour, quarter past, etc - and then just sends the latest update received for that tour.

    So for example if I'm waiting to see Lizzie at Reading, I might find out from the 10.00 text that she'd passed Staines at 9.55, from the 10.15 text she'd passed Sunningdale at 10.12, then at 10.30 get the text to tell me departed Ascot at 10.28, etc etc. This would give me enough progress info even if lots of people were texting away from the train and the lineside, and I know it will only cost me 48p per hour's use. And if I want to have more detail I can check the forum thread for the tour in between times where all the in-between texts will appear.

    If it worked like that then we can encourage everyone to send in their texts without worrying about all the other people doing the same thing.

    There, that's my 2p worth (or 12p maybe!), and as stated earlier I will be giving it a try from the linesideon Thursday's Cathedrals Express.
     
  11. admin

    admin Founder Administrator

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    I think i'll see how it goes for the moment. Then act if needed.
    Would a small charge be something like 5p?
     
  12. admin

    admin Founder Administrator

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    Been thinking about this post.
    I have also looked into the system, The chance of good and valid information being lost is quite high, also people might not get an update in time. A Live service I think will work best, maybe throttle the texts if it does get silly.
    I am looking at a spending cap per day to per user too.

    It sounds like Thursday will be the first real test of the system.
     
  13. Alberta 45562

    Alberta 45562 Part of the furniture

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    5p would be more favourable really,this wouldn't really be fair but would a subscription cap for each tour be suitable to stop overwhelming amounts of messages?
     
  14. admin

    admin Founder Administrator

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    Bit of an update to the system last night.
    After registering, the system will log you on, rather than throwing you to the logon page.
     
  15. royce6229

    royce6229 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for getting this up and running, potentialy a really good system, will take some of the hit and miss out of linesiding. Early days yet but you are obviously open to suggestions as it pans out. Possibly biggest issue will be, being bombarded with dozens of texts, but as you have to have seperate account and if you have no more than a £5 in it then not really a problem and to be honest £5 is not a lot to save standing at Ais Gill in the rain for hours not knowing what is going on. Well done.
     
  16. simon

    simon Resident of Nat Pres

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    I guess you are right - wait and see but if it does get silly then yes a charge of 5p might make people think before posting every five minutes.

    Anyway great idea and hopefully one that will be with us for sometime to come.
     
  17. Spamcan81

    Spamcan81 Nat Pres stalwart

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    How thing's have changed. Linesiding before the days of the mobile phone and mobile internet was a case of just sitting it out and waiting for things to come by. Now we can have minute by minute progress reports of just about anything running on rails.
     
  18. acw71000

    acw71000 Member Friend

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    A great idea but as a videographer the thoughts of being in a line of NP members with mobile message alerts going off at the same time is a bit alarming...could be worse than chainsaws, barking dogs or the chorus of ''here it comes Daddy'' !!
     
  19. admin

    admin Founder Administrator

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    Chuck your mobiles on vibrate, (reminds me in part of that toothbrush advert where everything is vibrating lol).
     
  20. RalphW

    RalphW Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Administrator Friend

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    Or an A4 chime whistle just to confuse the gallery who are expecting a King. :whistle:
     

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