Tuesday, February 3, 2009

TAPR Explained

TAPR is explained in by Steve Bible, N7HPR (TAPR’s vice president) in the June 13, 2008 RAIN report.

Have you developed a digital project but don’t know how to get some exposure or funding for it?

Try TAPR. A community that provides leadership and resources to radio amateurs for the purpose of advancing the radio art.

Steve Bible, N7HPR is TAPR’s vice president...

“One thing to keep in mind is that TAPR isn’t brick and mortar, doesn’t have paid staff running around with white labs coats, or jeans and a tee-shirt, which-ever vision that you have.”

“In terms of you creating a project, what TAPR does is very much like our mission statement says that we provide leadership and resources for advancing the amateur radio art.”

“If you have a project that you would like to bring to the community, and the community being amateur radio as a whole. What TAPR can do is not so much provide you a body or person, but provide you a forum or community to flush out your design....”

“What you bring is the expertise, the design and effort going into creating the project. Where TAPR can come in and help you with is the monetary side of it.”

“When it comes time to manufacturing the kit, you may want to make a kit where it’s a kit of parts, or you may want it contract manufactured like this, and this is where we are going to have to talk to you one on one with respect to contract manufacturing. But if your going to do a kit, what we’d ask that you’d do is you’d put the kit together and then ship those off to the TAPR office. And then TAPR would be the store front and sell them. Again TAPR would buy all the piece parts, but you’d be the one winding the torriods, putting parts in to bags....”

“How do you go about getting your project into the TAPR store front? What you do is write a proposal. There is no set format for this proposal, we don‘t really have a form. Suffice to say, that you describe the project and what benefit it has to the community . You kinda put a little bit of business plan into there. Here’s how much it’s going to cost to build the Alpha’s, the Beta’s here’s kind of the plan cost on how to go into production, how many can be sold.”

For what its worth, I thought that was helpful. I never really understood TAPR. I knew what the name stood for, so I always assumed they were the voice representing the digital aspects of the hobby.

I guess I can stop grumbling that they don't do anything in that arena. Now I know why, that's not their department apparently. The TAPR "resource" as described in the podcast is also very important, so I'm glad TAPR exists at least for this. But I also feel we need some leaders to help ham radio evolve. It's a shame, because that's an area the ARRL surely doesn't seem very interested in.

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