Group bug out project- recommended apps?

Topics on Radio (CB, GMRS, Ham, etc), GPS, Smoke Signals, or whatever else you can use to talk to other people who are not within yelling distance.

Moderator: ZS Global Moderators

Post Reply
User avatar
OathOfStone
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Jul 20, 2019 12:05 pm
Location: Canada

Group bug out project- recommended apps?

Post by OathOfStone » Sat Jul 20, 2019 1:01 pm

Some friends and I have decided to put together a bug out/ contingency plan. In part as a fun project and another part as a growing real-world concern.

We're spread out in around a 300km bubble (except one guy, he's about 4200km away so probably not making it to supper).

Right now we use 'Signal' to keep in touch. Is there an app out there or messaging service that would enable us to make not only a group chat but some kind of system where we can make lists (supplies we've gathered or connected), make to do lists, assign who's responsible for what lists, upload maps and route. Maybe some kind of family prepper app or something along those lines?

I'm sure I'll dig some up as I go through the forums but does anyone have any solid prepping/bugging out apps they can recommend off the top of their head?

(moved to Communications - NT2C)

User avatar
SCBrian
* * * * *
Posts: 1213
Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2010 1:56 pm
Location: Charleston, SC

Re: Group bug out project- recommended apps?

Post by SCBrian » Sat Jul 20, 2019 9:23 pm

Right now we use 'Signal' to keep in touch. Is there an app out there or messaging service that would enable us to make not only a group chat but some kind of system where we can make lists (supplies we've gathered or connected), make to do lists, assign who's responsible for what lists, upload maps and route. Maybe some kind of family prepper app or something along those lines?
I routinely use google drives with multiple people for multiple reasons.
Think of it as 10 people using the same set of office software.

https://support.google.com/a/users/answer/9310156?hl=en
Team Drive is a shared space that allow teams to store, search, and access their files anywhere from any device. Unlike My Drive, Team Drive belongs to an entire Team instead of an individual.
I tilt at Windmills
BattleVersion wrote:For my Family?...Burn down the world, sure... But, I'm also willing to carry it on my shoulders.
raptor wrote:...I am allergic to bullets;I break out in blood.
jnathan wrote:... you can choke on my Hebrew National.

User avatar
TacAir
* * * * *
Posts: 8012
Joined: Fri Aug 27, 2010 6:01 pm
Contact:

Re: Group bug out project- recommended apps?

Post by TacAir » Sun Jul 21, 2019 10:33 am

You are assuming the 'Net will be fully functional and not shut down (for any number of reasons from political to technical) ditto for the PSTN.

Do you have a fail-safe plan for comms out?
Last edited by TacAir on Sun Jul 28, 2019 1:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
TacAir - I'd rather be a disappointed pessimist than a horrified optimist
**All my books ** some with a different view of the "PAW". Check 'em out.
Adventures in rice storage//Mod your Esbit for better stability

User avatar
SCBrian
* * * * *
Posts: 1213
Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2010 1:56 pm
Location: Charleston, SC

Re: Group bug out project- recommended apps?

Post by SCBrian » Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:36 pm

TacAir wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 10:33 am
You are assuming the 'Net will be fully functional and not shut down (for any number of reasons from political to technical) ditto for the PSTN.

Do you have a frail-safe plan for comms out?
Made my recommendations based on him working on the planning stages, not the post-stage.
Post stage - those distances, you're looking at ham radio, and good ol paper and pencil and whatever books you've collected...
I tilt at Windmills
BattleVersion wrote:For my Family?...Burn down the world, sure... But, I'm also willing to carry it on my shoulders.
raptor wrote:...I am allergic to bullets;I break out in blood.
jnathan wrote:... you can choke on my Hebrew National.

User avatar
Asymetryczna
ZS Member
ZS Member
Posts: 1261
Joined: Thu Jun 04, 2015 3:56 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: The Road
Location: Raccoon Ford, VA

Re: Group bug out project- recommended apps?

Post by Asymetryczna » Mon Jul 22, 2019 3:28 pm

Sorry, can't help with apps. Apps seem to cause car crashes, people being run over or great falls from selfie spectaculars. Expect all transmissions to be closely monitored. Expect everyone that has a phone will use it at the same time. Don't expect electronics to work. Don't DEPEND on anything but your brain, experience and muscle. Learn morse and some basic semaphore.

One might consider developing and maintaining a brevity list among trusted friends. Say for example, that I have 10 close, like-minded friends and I think that I may only be able to get out 1 quick message and after that comms were successful only intermittently. By sending "Rangers - Bearclaw - 3" my people (also owning any list) would know only that I was on the move to site 2 and I expect to arrive in 3 hours.

RED LIST
Staying Put Nationals
Oscar Mike Rangers
Site 1 Angst
Site 2 Bearclaw
Site 3 Charlie Brown
Site 4 Deadwood
Site 5 Ethiopia
Site 6 Fallacy
Site 7 Gargantuan
Site 8 Hope
Site 9 Indigo
Site 10 Jasmine
Site 11 Kansas
Site 12 Leafblow
Site 13 Montana
Site 14 NewBern
Site 15 OompaLoompa

Once I had reestablished comms of any kind, perhaps my entire group uses a set of the exact same 3 books, labeled as 1,2 and 3. By sending "1-233" they might know to use the book labeled as #1 and turn to page 233. The very first letter on that page becomes #1. Let's say it is an "E."
So E=1
F=2
G=3
h= 4

all the way through the alphabet for that day/transmission. D=26, still with me?

One could send any amount of information this way, sort of a one-time pad.

The idea is to stay quiet and safe while the trouble passes. Or, if required, go full Wolverine.

3-11-11-26 8-18-25-7.
It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see.
Henry David Thoreau

User avatar
woodsghost
* * * * *
Posts: 3104
Joined: Thu May 16, 2013 3:45 pm

Re: Group bug out project- recommended apps?

Post by woodsghost » Tue Jul 23, 2019 7:06 pm

I was also going to vote for Googledocs for the planning stages, with the understanding that anything put there is basically the property of a big tech company. Anything truly important should only be pen/paper. Never electronic. Period. Both because of big tech concerns and lights out concerns.

I seem to remember coded messages are illegal to send by ham radio. That is what I understand of Part 97 (US law, unsure of other countries). But for use with other comms one might have other forms of pads as mentioned above. Maybe with 6x6 commands, on x number of sheets (same commands but arranged differently on each sheet), with each combination (A4, C6, D3, 34th & Vine St, 88th & Old Town) one might be able to quickly and clearly communicate key words or sentences to your friends. The books idea would be difficult to use if needing to communicate with urgency, though "urgency" depends on the situation. The Bearclaw example would be useful if URGENCY was needed. So you can have options, depending on the situation. More complexity for more detailed messages and time required to understand them.

So....apps.... You may have noticed the folks responding here don't really trust technology. Apps can be used to gain access to your phone or other devices. Apps can pass content to the creators of the apps (for a recent example: sending your pictures to the Russian government, but I'm still irritated with Amazon, Target, Face Book and Google. Russians are just one more on my list of "not trusted"). You may be sending auditory recordings, GPS and maps, images, purchasing info, inventory lists, and all sorts of stuff to others to study. Secret military bases have been discovered by looking at GPS info from fitness apps used by soldiers and others who stay fit.

I'm sure this is not what you were looking for, but a frequently touted virtue of prepping is keeping such info to your self and keeping it secure. And ... maybe we are a bit paranoid. But this is how I see the world.

Oh, I'd look at Proton Mail as an email service. And I'd look at your computer's antivirus. My AV is apparently made by a company friendly to the Russian government and the Israelis found my AV company sending government files stored on a personal computer to the Russians. The worst thing I put on my computer is communications with zombie fans, so I'm probably ok. But if the US and Russia ever get angry with one another, what do you want to bet my computer will suddenly stop working? I'll bet there is some backdoor stuff built into my AV.
*Remember: I'm just a guy on the internet :)
*Don't go to stupid places with stupid people & do stupid things.
*Be courteous. Look normal. Be in bed by 10'clock.

“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” -Bilbo Baggins.

User avatar
moab
* * * * *
Posts: 3605
Joined: Sun Feb 26, 2012 7:07 pm

Re: Group bug out project- recommended apps?

Post by moab » Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:35 am

I think most of you are missing the point. And half the fun. They're in the planning stages. No reason not to use the vast technology at their fingertips. Everything can be printed out. And used offline. How else are you going to organize such a group? By mail? Only in person? They are 300km away from each other.

I like the google docs idea. You can give all of the people in your group access to any number of documents. That you all can work on at the same time. You can even get their business version. Which is $5 per person. Not sure what more you get. But I use it for business. And it's very effective. And they do have a chat app. Although I find Facebook messenger a lot more friendly. but you can share document links in any chat system. But the Google chat might suffice. Then your working within one system.

Yes. It's big tech having your data. But do you really think Facebook or Google is going to find out your plans and publish them and then find you in a PAW because of it? For what gain? Come on. Be realistic. Use the tools you have for planning. But don't expect them to be around once catastrophe strikes. Print out everything and safe guard it. Or at least have it on a solar rechargeable phone or tablet. That you can use for while in a disaster event. But have paper back ups.

I'm more interested in what those documents you create might be? This is the fun.

Communications
Locations and location specific issues. Where are your meet up locations along the way to your BO location. Alternative bug out locations. etc.
Bugging out gear. Packs, equipment, food, weapons. etc.
Bug in gear at your destination.
Travel routes. Alternative travel routes.
Vehicle issues. Gas, Gas cans, water cans, how much to carry and what. Proper maintenance.
Scheduling test routes and test bug outs.

Any other ideas?
"Ideas are more dangerous than guns. We don't let our people have guns. Why would we let them have ideas?" Josef Stalin

User avatar
Asymetryczna
ZS Member
ZS Member
Posts: 1261
Joined: Thu Jun 04, 2015 3:56 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: The Road
Location: Raccoon Ford, VA

Re: Group bug out project- recommended apps?

Post by Asymetryczna » Wed Jul 24, 2019 11:57 am

Bona fides. Credentials / how to identify.
It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see.
Henry David Thoreau

User avatar
OathOfStone
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Jul 20, 2019 12:05 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Group bug out project- recommended apps?

Post by OathOfStone » Wed Jul 24, 2019 8:52 pm

Thanks for the feedback and input guys.

Totally tracking the cons of trusting technology in a disaster. Even during New Years eve my cell phone provider gets swamped and messages don't send, sometimes for hours.

No lying to ourselves about the shortcomings and problems, that includes security concerns.

As Moab pointed out, this is the 'fun' planning stage. We're serious about coming up with a working plan, but also want to enjoy the project and have some fun.

I'm checking out the options you guys mentioned for online programs we can look at doing a community based approach to the planning.
moab wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:35 am


I'm more interested in what those documents you create might be? This is the fun.

Communications
Locations and location specific issues. Where are your meet up locations along the way to your BO location. Alternative bug out locations. etc.
Bugging out gear. Packs, equipment, food, weapons. etc.
Bug in gear at your destination.
Travel routes. Alternative travel routes.
Vehicle issues. Gas, Gas cans, water cans, how much to carry and what. Proper maintenance.
Scheduling test routes and test bug outs.

Any other ideas?
A few years ago I came up with a 'fun' bug out plan on my own- just killing time at work. I mentioned that to my buddies and we're going to look at it, see what works and what doesn't.

The original plan had a meeting at a central location to figure out whats next.
Basically 3 routes of approach with safe houses/OPs designated along the routes there. Stores and places for supplies highlighted on route.

We have a decent amount of firearms between us and in the past when we'd discuss it one of the biggest issues was what guns to bring and what to leave behind. (I'm of the mind to bring more as I think firearms and ammo would act as currency)



One app I used to have which was removed by the author but I found pretty fun was a Range Card app. It took Google maps and allowed you to super impose positions onto the map, designated left and right arcs, ranges, prominent features and such. Designed more for military applications (like a platoon or company defensive) but it was a lot of fun to come up with home and cabin matrix's. It's too bad the author took it down.
Would be interesting if someone could design an Augmented Reality version for cell phones- kind of like the apps where you look at the phone and the constellations and celestial bodies are super imposed in the back except this would be arcs etc.. Big off topic there but a neat idea I think.

Comms wise a couple of our gang are pretty up to speed with ham radio stuff. I have some comms training through the military but the ham stuff really surprised me. Long term plan would be for everyone to have a set up at home and one at the cabin.

User avatar
moab
* * * * *
Posts: 3605
Joined: Sun Feb 26, 2012 7:07 pm

Re: Group bug out project- recommended apps?

Post by moab » Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:09 pm

OathOfStone wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 8:52 pm
Thanks for the feedback and input guys.

Totally tracking the cons of trusting technology in a disaster. Even during New Years eve my cell phone provider gets swamped and messages don't send, sometimes for hours.

No lying to ourselves about the shortcomings and problems, that includes security concerns.

As Moab pointed out, this is the 'fun' planning stage. We're serious about coming up with a working plan, but also want to enjoy the project and have some fun.

I'm checking out the options you guys mentioned for online programs we can look at doing a community based approach to the planning.
moab wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:35 am


I'm more interested in what those documents you create might be? This is the fun.

Communications
Locations and location specific issues. Where are your meet up locations along the way to your BO location. Alternative bug out locations. etc.
Bugging out gear. Packs, equipment, food, weapons. etc.
Bug in gear at your destination.
Travel routes. Alternative travel routes.
Vehicle issues. Gas, Gas cans, water cans, how much to carry and what. Proper maintenance.
Scheduling test routes and test bug outs.

Any other ideas?
A few years ago I came up with a 'fun' bug out plan on my own- just killing time at work. I mentioned that to my buddies and we're going to look at it, see what works and what doesn't.

The original plan had a meeting at a central location to figure out whats next.
Basically 3 routes of approach with safe houses/OPs designated along the routes there. Stores and places for supplies highlighted on route.

We have a decent amount of firearms between us and in the past when we'd discuss it one of the biggest issues was what guns to bring and what to leave behind. (I'm of the mind to bring more as I think firearms and ammo would act as currency)



One app I used to have which was removed by the author but I found pretty fun was a Range Card app. It took Google maps and allowed you to super impose positions onto the map, designated left and right arcs, ranges, prominent features and such. Designed more for military applications (like a platoon or company defensive) but it was a lot of fun to come up with home and cabin matrix's. It's too bad the author took it down.
Would be interesting if someone could design an Augmented Reality version for cell phones- kind of like the apps where you look at the phone and the constellations and celestial bodies are super imposed in the back except this would be arcs etc.. Big off topic there but a neat idea I think.

Comms wise a couple of our gang are pretty up to speed with ham radio stuff. I have some comms training through the military but the ham stuff really surprised me. Long term plan would be for everyone to have a set up at home and one at the cabin.
This sounds very exciting. If you end up coming up with a good category list. Please share. I'd love to see it. I'd also love to hear more about this app. It sounds fascinating. Have you tried finding anything similar?
"Ideas are more dangerous than guns. We don't let our people have guns. Why would we let them have ideas?" Josef Stalin

Post Reply

Return to “Communications”