Wednesday, July 30, 2008

We Do That Radio

It wasn't till around Dayton 2008 that the ARRL added Technology as a "fifth pillar" to the four pillars currently embraced by the ARRL: Public Service, Advocacy, Education and Membership.

In addition to the new fifth pillar, the ARRL has launched a year-long ham radio recruitment campaign emphasizing the Amateur Radio Service as a scientific national resource. The campaign, announced in the Public Relations forum, invites newcomers to discover ham radio in the 21st Century -- where hams are using science, technology and experimentation to explore the radio spectrum.

So that explains the site...

Technology should have been our first pillar! It should have always been our first pillar. It should always be our first pillar. At one time, it was.

Some of the lead-in key phrases are:
Science, technology, experimentation.
Welcome to Ham Radio in the 21st Century
Learn about cutting edge Ham radio technology and techniques

I feel this newly launched site is a good idea. The problem I feel is this is really too geared for potential new hams. I wish there was (aside from what I'm trying to do with this blog), a similar journal to keep existing hams fresh with new ideas and technology.

I believe and know there are a number of hams that just hold licenses. They may have been active at one point, when something piqued their interest. At some point, whatever it was that drew them to the hobby became old hat, and they moved to an inactive/limbo status.

From: Allen Pitts, W1AGP:

Are you involved in an interesting new technological area? Does it relate to Amateur Radio? If so, you may be able to help us keep the new website fresh and interesting.

We’re interested in showing the new technologies which are being developed, especially in wireless communications, and their relationship to hams and our Service.

The goal is to give the readers information:

a) This is NOT about your granddaddy's era ham radio

b) Amateur Radio leads to many interesting science areas to explore

c) this is fun – and can even lead to careers

d) why not join us?

What would be involved for you is pretty simple. I am looking for is sets of materials on new technical experiments or developments or applications including:

- Writing (no more than one single spaced page) what it is about and what it does targeted to NON-hams where to get more information about the topic

- Writings about the developer(s) & why they did it (half page or so)

- Good hi-rez photo of person/people involved (hopefully showing the equipment used)

- Approx 30 sec to 1 min wmv video piece talking about or demonstrating it for non-ham

- Approx 30 sec to 1 min mp3 audio explaining it to a non-ham

Obviously not all of the topics sent to us are used. Each of us has one or more “pet” modes or ways to do things and if it is not something new to the technology scene, it probably is not appropriate for the purpose of this site. But, if you have information on a new dongle, Asterisk, whiz-bang, whizzy or some other way in which ham radio experience is opening or paired up with a new technology, then we would like to hear about it!

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