Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

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Lee_Wheeler
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Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by Lee_Wheeler » Mon Sep 12, 2016 2:28 pm

I am trying to get all of the ducks in a row for the upcoming National Periodic Test and, since we know when it is scheduled, I was going to give traffic a heads up to adjust the break to make time for it. Has anyone heard anything about how long the script is or what the total time of the test will be?

...Lee

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Shane
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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by Shane » Tue Sep 13, 2016 11:50 am

I've heard 3:30.
Mike Shane, CBRE
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awsherrill
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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by awsherrill » Tue Sep 13, 2016 1:40 pm

Billy Joel says they'll cut it down to 3:05...

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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by Lee_Wheeler » Tue Sep 13, 2016 4:14 pm

Good Lord, what can possibly take 3 1/2 minutes to test?

...Lee

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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by techboywi » Tue Sep 13, 2016 9:00 pm

Lee_Wheeler wrote:Good Lord, what can possibly take 3 1/2 minutes to test?

...Lee

The test will be in both english and spanish
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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by Shane » Tue Sep 13, 2016 11:35 pm

awsherrill wrote:Billy Joel says they'll cut it down to 3:05...
i know there's a joke on there but I can't quite get it.
Mike Shane, CBRE
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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by TPT » Wed Sep 14, 2016 6:29 am

So, it will then be cut off at 2:00 minutes by all those decoders that haven't been recently decoded. Or perhaps even by those decoders that have been upgraded--if they left the 2 minute limit in place for the NPT.

Three minutes to control the audio of all radio, TV and cable outlets in the country. For a system that likely will never be used.

I'm beginning to think this is yet another finger-in-the-eye of the American public by the Obama administration before they are evicted from their public housing in D.C.

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PID_Stop
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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by PID_Stop » Wed Sep 14, 2016 8:52 am

TPT wrote:So, it will then be cut off at 2:00 minutes by all those decoders that haven't been recently decoded. Or perhaps even by those decoders that have been upgraded--if they left the 2 minute limit in place for the NPT.
Wait, what? I don't see anything in the settings for our Sage ENDECs that would limit the duration of an alert or test being relayed, though there must be a finite limit that's a result of the size of the buffer memory. The only thing that even vaguely resembles what I think you're suggesting is the default duration, but that refers to the length of the emergency condition (i.e., how long the tornado warning lasts), not how long the EAS plays... on an ENDEC, the default is 1:00, which is one hour.

Are you using some other device where the buffered message length is adjustable?

-- Jeff

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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by awsherrill » Wed Sep 14, 2016 9:28 am

i know there's a joke on there but I can't quite get it.
Billy Joel's song "The Entertainer" has a line that goes, "It was a beautiful song but it ran too long /if you're gonna have a hit, you gotta make it fit /so they cut it down to 3:05"

Was gonna reference what Dan Ingram allegedly said about the most important thing he learned to do during his career in broadcasting... :twisted:

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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by TPT » Thu Sep 15, 2016 6:25 am

An ordinary alert is limited to 2:00 by the Sage. Example: NWS flash flood warnings when a front is moving through. They'll rattle off a list of 15 counties, then go into a lecture about not driving on flooded roads. Not unusual to have the message cut off at that point. Now the EAN is not limited, by design. The question is whether this two minute limitation was removed for the NPT as well

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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by Slab Bulkhead » Thu Sep 15, 2016 6:58 am

TPT wrote:So, it will then be cut off at 2:00 minutes by all those decoders that haven't been recently decoded. Or perhaps even by those decoders that have been upgraded--if they left the 2 minute limit in place for the NPT.

Three minutes to control the audio of all radio, TV and cable outlets in the country. For a system that likely will never be used.

I'm beginning to think this is yet another finger-in-the-eye of the American public by the Obama administration before they are evicted from their public housing in D.C.
Well, given what came out of the document dump the other day, if you have $3.5 million burning a hole in your pocket you can become FCC chairman and solve all our problems. :twisted:

I'm interested to see how a DASDEC handles it, since the main thing it seems to be good at is crashing every six months or so like clockwork.

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PID_Stop
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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by PID_Stop » Thu Sep 15, 2016 10:25 am

TPT wrote:An ordinary alert is limited to 2:00 by the Sage. Example: NWS flash flood warnings when a front is moving through. They'll rattle off a list of 15 counties, then go into a lecture about not driving on flooded roads. Not unusual to have the message cut off at that point. Now the EAN is not limited, by design. The question is whether this two minute limitation was removed for the NPT as well
I just reached out to Sage, and got a very speedy reply from Harold Price. Yes, there's a two-minute limit for audio playback for everything except EAN messages, which must be unlimited per FCC rules.

According to a page on the NAB's website, the upcoming NPT should run about :53, so there shouldn't be any problem with it being cut off. The NPT is included in the two-minute limit.

I'm wondering if the three-minute figure was somebody's estimate of how long it would take from the original test was sent, to when the last relay finishes? That would seem more reasonable.

As for the NWS... well, everybody needs to be told to turn around, don't drown.

-- Jeff

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Shane
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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by Shane » Thu Sep 15, 2016 12:05 pm

Glad I apparently heard wrong.

Our local NWS office has gotten pretty good at keeping their alerts under the 2 minute limit. Still, if I'm in a position to do so, I cut them off right before they go into the highway mile markers.

Years ago, I was trained to indicate where along major interstates (and we only have two) one would enter or leave a watch or warned area. But we used towns, not mile markers. Done with a mind toward someone new to the area or those driving through on the interstates who would have no idea what county they are in let alone what mile marker they are at.

Even though my memory ain't what it used to be I have a propensity to memorize unconsciously the town(s) that go with a given exit number. Probably because I grew up in New Jersey. So I use their mile markers to determine the towns on the exit sign I want to use when repeating the alert. But only on interstates.

They (NWS) have taken a good idea and made it near useless except perhaps for law enforcement which is among their audiences.
Mike Shane, CBRE
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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by Lee_Wheeler » Tue Sep 27, 2016 4:23 pm

In a futile attempt to keep the server traffic humming along at the Commission Al Kenyon sent out a proposed schedule for licensees to file Form 2. The dissemination was limited to the SBE listserver which means not many people got it and I suspect even fewer will pay any attention to it. That said, here is a copy of the email:

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Al Kenyon <askenyon@cox.net>
Date: Mon, Sep 26, 2016 at 5:46 PM
Subject: [sbe-eas] Instructions for ETRS Forms Two and Three
To: "SBE EAS Exchange - a mail list for discussion about the Emergency Alert System and other emergency communication issues." <sbe-eas@sbe.org>


Each ETRS Form One registrant should have received the following email
instructions from ETRS@fcc.gov:

Subject: Instructions for ETRS Forms Two and Three

EAS Participants,

Please read the following important information on filing ETRS Forms Two and
Three.

General Information

All EAS Participants are reminded that Form Two and Form Three must be filed
by either (1) the same entity that filed Form One, or (2) a coordinator for
the EAS Participant.

To maximize the resources available to process Form Two filings, we
recommend that EAS Participants file Form Two in accordance with the
following schedule:

Facilities in Eastern Time Zone - 2:30 pm to 5:00 pm EDT
Facilities in Central Time Zone - 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm EDT (4:00
pm to 6:00 pm CDT)
Facilities in Mountain Time Zone - 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm EDT (5:00
pm to 6:00 pm MDT)
Facilities in Pacific Time Zone - 8:00 pm to 9:30 pm EDT (5:00
pm to 6:30 pm PDT)
Facilities in all other time zones - 9:30 pm to 11:59 pm EDT

If you cannot file for your facilities at the recommended time, you may file
at any other time. Relatedly, we urge all EAS Participants to submit Form
Three no earlier than September 29.

How to file Forms Two or Three using the online forms

You can file Forms Two and Three for a facility by visiting the record for
that facility. You can access that record by taking the following steps:

Click on the Records tab.
Click on EAS Test Records.
Click on one of your records.
Click on the Submit Form Two or Submit Form Three button in the top-right
corner of the page.
Complete and submit the form.

Repeat these steps for each of your facilities.

How to file Forms Two or Three via batch filing

ETRS will generate a spreadsheet template that pre-populates your Form One
data and report code numbers. You can use this template to batch file Forms
Two and Three. You can download this template by taking the following
steps:

Click on the Reports tab
Click on EAS Tests.
Type in the name of your EAS Participant in the appropriate
field.
Click on the green "Search" button.
Confirm that the records that appear are the ones for which you want to
file.
Click on the green "Email Data in Excel" button.

After some processing time, you will receive an e-mail with an attached zip
file that includes your spreadsheet. You can also visit the Tasks tab to
download your spreadsheet. We strongly urge you to download this template
prior to the nationwide test.

Complete your spreadsheet for Form Two (columns AB and AC) or Form Three
(all remaining columns). As with Form One, please be sure to enable macros
on and use the dropdown menus where provided.

You may upload the spreadsheet by navigating to the Submit New Batch Filing
option under the Actions tab. Be sure to select the correct Form number.
After you click Submit, ETRS will begin to process your spreadsheet. This
may take several minutes. As processing completes, you will receive an
e-mail indicating that a new Task has been created in ETRS. If your filing
is successful, you will also receive a second e-mail with the subject line
"ETRS Notification Report" that includes a .zip file.

If you do not receive an e-mail that includes a .zip file, your batch filing
spreadsheet needs further modifications before it can be filed. Click on
the "Tasks" tab in ETRS, then click on the most recent batch filing task.
You will be presented with a list of changes that must be made to your
spreadsheet. Please make those changes and try again. If you get stuck at
any point, please e-mail our staff at ETRS@fcc.gov.

Best,
The ETRS team

_______________________________________________
sbe-eas mailing list
sbe-eas@sbe.org
https://pairlist7.pair.net/mailman/listinfo/sbe-eas

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PID_Stop
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Re: Any word on the length of the pending NPT?

Post by PID_Stop » Wed Sep 28, 2016 1:08 pm

We just went 23 for 23 on the test... crawls, duck farts, and all. Didn't realize I was holding my breath for quite a while.

Interestingly, several of our stations picked up and relayed the test from LP1s, and got the CAP version a few seconds later... not an effect I was expecting, but a darn sight better than 2011's test.

Time for a little happy dance!

-- Jeff

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