Monday, June 27, 2005

K2DBK's ham radio blog

Recently, I was exchanging emails with a friend about some things related to helping him (and his daughter) get their ham (amateur) radio licenses. After an number of emails back and forth, he suggest that some of the information might be useful to others, and that I publish it in the form of a blog. After a little thought, I thought that perhaps he was right (and if not, then the only loss was a bit of my own time spent posting), so I thought I'd go ahead and start posting.

As a prelude to posting the information we were discussing, I wanted to just provide a few tidbits of information about ham radio in general, in case someone happens to randomly stumble upon this and wonder what this is all about.

Many of you might remember hearing that your parents or grandparents (realistically more like "father or grandfather"; hams are predominantly, though not exclusively, male) used to use their ham radio to talk all over the world. This is that same ham radio, and although hams still use morse code (we call it CW, which means Continuous Wave) and "phone" (voice), hams continue to innovate and there's some pretty sophisticated digital technologies being used which allow us to communicate when signals are so weak that they can't be heard by a human).


Anyway, there are plenty of places to learn more about ham radio, but I think the best is the American Radio Relay League's site at http://www.arrl.org/hamradio.html. If you don't find what you're looking for there, drop me a line at k2dbk [At] arrl.net and I'll do what I can to help.

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