I’ve just had an email from the automated billing service for the telephone service provider that provides the UK and US numbers for SMS spotting. Whilst putting some more cash into the meter I grabbed a few statistics.
In the last six months there have been 4096 inbound SMS numbers from SOTA activators. I haven’t looked at the data for a good while and was astonished to see around 750 SMS spots a month nowadays. What started as a bit of fun has grown somewhat huge over the years. 4 years ago the figure for the same period (but only 1 number) was 1452 inbound SMS.
4096 inbound messages cost 4096 * $0.0075 = $30.72 and rental of 2 numbers for 6 months adds another $12 making a grand total $42.72. Or an estimated running cost of $86 / year. (All figures US dollars).
Which is well funded from previous generous donations - and enough in the kitty to keep going
Good to see participation in SOTA is growing.
Whilst uploading my log just now, I was wondering: are our SOTA logs stored at one geographic location or distributed on different country servers? It must be massive by now. Is that expensive?
Logs themselves are served from a single location, backed up to multiple sites around the world. When you factor in SW2/3, SOTA mapping, new sotadata, SSO, rbnhole, SMS and a host of other services there’s double digits servers and four-digit costs per year.
…and yes they are spread out around the world
SW3 / Summits / API (sota.org.uk): Azure (3 servers in europe/us/asia )
sotadata.org.uk (webserver): Manchester or London
newsotadata.sota.org.uk: New York
database engine: Manchester or London
SMS/Cluster server: Iceland
SMS phone server: Amazon EC2 USA
rbnhole: New York
sotamaps: New York
database size is about 2GB and primary backups are located in UK with secondary backups located in California. Plus copies on my PC!
Expected costs for mid-2019/mid-2020 about €3000. Work is ongoing to reduce one of the major costs which is data transmission.
This is funded entirely by the sale of awards, merchandise and donations.
I am new to SOTA starting in June this year and am amazed at the quality of this organization and the tools you provide to the worldwide participants. I’m happy to provide a donation, heading there now!
Greg - KJ7EHA
Andy, what portion of our funding comes from donations??
Not a great percentage - enough to pay the SMS service worldwide and, at a guess, the cost of running the SOTA shopping site. Profits from merchandise sales are the greatest contributor