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December 2010

Media

 

Vol 8, No 12
December 2010

IN THIS EDITION:

Looking for club info?

It is now possible to get a list of the ARRL affiliated clubs, with detailed information and sorted in several different ways, directly from the Web site. The information can be displayed in three different ways: on the screen, as a list of hyperlinks, and as a PDF. The list of hyperlinks is a very useful way to go directly to the information on a specific club.

If you go to www.arrl.org/big-club-list you will see the search screen. It is labeled BETA; we are not aware of any bugs but don’t want to remove the label until more people have had a chance to use it. Please feel free to play with and let us know of any problems you encounter. The list is available to anyone, but is designed primarily to help Section Managers and ACCs to do their jobs. But PIOs will find it helpful too.

Everyone likes short lists.

“10 things your pilot will not tell you” or “12 things to ask your doctor” ...and so on. If you want to get into print media, one of the easiest ways is to send in a list. OK, so let’s have some fun here! I asked the PR@arrl.org reflector for ideas, and I got a lot of good ones! Here’s a summary:

 

You have read about ham radio helping in emergencies, but there’s a lot we bet you don’t know.

10 things you didn’t know about Amateur Radio

  1. 1.Often called “ham radio,” there are more licensed Amateur Radio operators today than any time in history and it’s still growing.
  2. 2. Ham Radio has satellites! The hams have many of their own satellites orbiting the earth that relay messages for them.
  3. 3. Computers outnumber Morse code keys. While many hams still like to use Morse code for fun, modern ham radios use digital signal processing and sophisticated computers.
  4. 4. You don’t need to know Morse code anymore to get a ham radio license. But you still have to learn radio electronics and pass an FCC test.
  5. 5. Ham radio is not really one hobby but more than 20 activities under one roof, from just chatting internationally to emergency work, contesting and even bouncing signals off the moon.
  6. 6. Text messages? That’s nothing new to hams. Hams have been sending text messages since 1946 and plotting the location and progress of moving radios on maps for decades.
  7. 7. Ham radio is the only service that isn’t restricted to “channels” (fixed frequencies) but allows its users to tune anywhere through several whole radio bands from low to ultra high frequencies.
  8. 8. NASA Astronauts use ham radio for emergency back-up communications from the International Space Station.
  9. 9. Hams are DIY-type people and are encouraged to build their own transmitters, antennas, electronics and computer applications.
  10. 10. Ham radio an activity enjoyed by CEOs, Nobel Prize winners, astronauts, actors, senators, kings, singers, leaders of foreign countries, an archbishop, and even a saint (SP3RN, St. Maximilian Kolbe) as well as 2.5 million more people worldwide.

 

Tour of the ISS and Amateur Radio in use up there

There’s a very nice mini tour of the ISS and then a session of Doug making contacts over N. America at
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h73EYcyszf8 . We’re trying to get the original (uncompressed) files for promoting Amateur Radio.

Ham Numbers

As we reported in November, Amateur Radio in the US is continuing to grow. While some folks wanted to play with the statistics and graphics, the bottom line is there are more hams and there is a higher percentage of them going on to earn higher class licenses. The following comes from www.ah0a.org – one of the very best sites for accuracy.

Year

Ending
Month

Extra

Advanced

General

Tech

Novice

Total

2010

Sep

122,268

59,769

155,106

341,691

16,057

694,891

2009

Dec

119,403

60,795

150,970

334,245

17,084

682,497

2008

Dec

115,625

62,104

144,832

322,660

18,343

663,564

2007

Dec

112,022

65,368

142,680

315,314

20,458

655,842

2006

Dec

108,223

69,915

131,224

323,073

23,633

656,068

2005

Dec

107,440

74,221

135,067

319,125

26,747

662,600

2004

Dec

106,090

77,948

138,292

319,742

29,765

671,837

2003

Dec

104,894

82,034

141,498

322,821

32,812

684,059

2002

Dec

103,257

84,326

139,848

321,805

36,072

685,308

2001

Dec

97,977

86,545

138,625

319,735

40,155

683,037

2000

Dec

93,807

88,783

134,144

319,874

45,632

682,240

1999

Dec

75,392

103,471

110,386

335,768

52,375

677,392

 

 

Famous Ham Lists?

Somehow we got off on the topic of famous hams. There are many lists out there – some more accurate than others. Some are just wishful thinking. Part of the problem is the different ways in which other countries do their licensing. But Stan Zawrotny, K4SBZ, sent me a list which pretty well matched the confirmed ones I already had here, adds a few new ones and then I deleted some that were known errors.

 

Call Sign Name Description

KD5GSL William Shepard Astronaut

K2HEP John Sculley Former CEO of Apple Computer

WA6BND Stephen G. "Steve" Wozniak Co-founder of Apple Computer

W6EZV General Curtis LeMay Military legend

6UK John Huston Famed film director

K2ORS Jean Shepherd Author/Actor/Radio/TV personality.

K4LIB Arthur Godfrey TV personality (SK)

KB2GSD Walter Cronkite Former TV Journalist

KD6WUS Hugh Downs TV announcer (Concentration)

KE6PZH Marlon Brando, Jr. Actor;

N6YOS Priscilla Presley Actress, Wife of Elvis

WB6RER Andy Devine Cowboy actor

AE6J Timothy "Gaines" Hagelganz Bass Player Stryper;

K0HWY Tex Beneke Band Leader

K4EB Larry Junstrom Bass Guitar 38 Special

K5PSG Peggy Sue Gerron-Rackham of the late Buddy Holly's 1957 song

KA6HVA Burl Ives Singer, deceased

KA7EVD Donnie Osmond "Donnie and Marie" fame.

KB4VJG Tommy Tucker Band Leader and network radio host

KD4WUJ Patty L. Ramey AKA "Patty Loveless"

KG4UYY James L. "Lance" Bass 'N SYNC pop singer

N6FUP Stu Cook Bass player Creedence Clearwater Revival

N6IWP Anthony Ray Reportedly rap star Sir Mix Alot

N7YA Adam S. Taylor Bass player "Industry"

W4CGP Chet Atkins “Certified Guitar Picker"

WA6AEH John A. "Johnny" Zell Musician for Lawrence Welk

WB4KCG Ronnie Milsap Singer/Songwriter

WB6ACU Joe Walsh Guitarist/Singer/Songwriter/Eagles

WD4LZC Larnelle Harris Seven-time Grammy winner

I0FCG Francesco Cossiga Former President of Italy

K2ZCZ George Pataki Ex-Governor of New York

K7UGA Barry Goldwater Late US Senator (Arizona)

KF4KBT Takura M. Christmas national cartooning winner

LU1SM Carlos Saul Menem President of Argentina (1989-1999)

N4HX James R. Bullington Peace Corps Director in Niger

SP3RN St. Maximilian Kolbe Roman Catholic WW II martyr-saint

VU2RG Rajiv Gandhi Late Prime Minister of India

VU2SON Sonia Gandhi Rajiv’s widow

W6QYI Cardinal Roger M. Mahony Archbishop of Los Angeles

W7EQI Greg Walden Oregon Congressman

WD5DVR Mike Ross US Congressman (D-Arkansas)

YN1AS General Anastasio Somoza Former President of Nicaragua

ZK1AN Sir Thomas Davis Former Premier of Cook Islands

9K2CS Prince Yousuf Al-Sabah Royalty, Kuwait

A41AA Qaboos Bin Said Al-Said Sultan of Oman

CN8MH King Hassan II (Moulay Hassan) King of Morocco

EA0JC King Juan Carlos King of Spain;

HS1A Bhumiphol Adulayadej King of Thailand

HS1D Maha Chakri Sirindhorn Princess- Thailand

HS1LY Prince Titiphan Prince of Thailand

HZ1TA Prince Talal bin Abdulaziz Saudi Arabian Prince

JY1 King Hussein King of Jordan

JY1NH Queen Noor Queen of Jordan

JY2HT Former Crown Prince Hassan King Hussein's brother

SU1VN Prince Talal Saudi Arabian royalty

UT5UDX Sergey Rebrov Scored winning goal - 2006 World Cup match

N7ZIM Gary Zimmerman Pro Football Hall of Fame

 

 

And a couple more:

Dr. Karl William Edmark, a Seattle cardiovascular surgeon and ham radio operator who invented the defibrillator in his free time when he started experimenting with electronic means to halt death during cardiac arrest.

Scott Durchslag, the Chief Operating Officer at Skype (hired in July 2008) enjoys building amateur radio transceivers. This interest is included on their web site

Another ham invention is the PC Modem, Dale Heatherington, WA4DSY, was a big contributor to the Hayes Modem design.

How to finish 2010 well

Oklahoma Section Manager Kevin O’Dell shared that he has clubs working the shopping areas with 2m radios. They are setting up “Talk to Santa” stations where shoppers with children can let them talk to the bearded old elf himself. It may not create any new hams, but it definitely does make friends and all it takes is a minimum of 2 hams (one playing Santa from somewhere unseen). Simple, easy and fun to do – try it!

 

 

What’s coming 2011

The 2011 World Amateur Radio Day’s theme will be “Amateur Radio: The first technology-based social network.”

 

President Kay Craigie will be creating a video on advocacy. We hope to have it by Dayton.

 

We’ll be working on another video about the DIY (do it yourself) technologies we use.

 

A new flier telling people about the non-emergency community services hams provide.

 

The national convention in Texas.

 

Special presentation materials highlighting the 5 pillars of ARRL are also coming.

 

 

Grass roots advocacy

Dan Henderson, N1ND, writes:

The Legislative Action / Grassroots Program of the ARRL plans on continuing their efforts once the new 112th Congress convenes in Washington in January 2011.

During the 111th Congress the ARRL enjoyed some moderate success in educating lawmakers on the need consider legislation to address how land use restrictions (CC&Rs) negatively affects the Amateur Radio Service. Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee from Texas introduced HR 2160 - Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Enhancement Act. This act garnered the support of 41 co-sponsors – the most in the House of Representatives ever for an amateur-related bill of its type. Even more successful was S 1755, sponsored by Senators Joe Lieberman and Susan Collins. The Senate unanimously passed S 1755 in late 2009. Unfortunately, neither bill has been able to proceed through the House Energy and Commerce Committee for consideration by the full House. Nevertheless, it should be noted that while neither bill has been adopted, this is the closest we have ever come to successfully obtaining Congressional support in the field of antenna restrictions.

To help further support the Legislative Action / Grassroots program, the ARRL will be adding a new electronic newsletter in early 2011. While not a monthly or regular feature, this will be a new tool in place to help reach ARRL membership with information about the ARRL legislative agenda, as well as means to help solicit active member contact with their elected officials. Look for information in early 2011 about how to sign-up for this free informational letter.

The Last Word

The coming weeks are a very special season. Underneath all the candles and parties are several deep truths about people and our place in the cosmos. One of these is that we hope for, indeed we NEED, companionship and that precious communication that happens when two or more people openly share and care. These are the times when we are most vulnerable, most human and most fulfilled.

 

I spotted something very interesting the past months. It first came from an unexpected source – the rock group Arcade Fire. By now you should have seen the QST article I wrote about them. But beyond what I wrote was the realization that they were using their grandfather and his QSL cards to point out the lost treasure of really meeting people on a human level. Not just making contacts, but sharing little slices of life and of each other’s personhood. Text messages and emails don’t do that. The unique personalized cards do.

 

But that was just one odd group – and a rock band at that. What do they know?

 

Well, apparently they know more than you might guess as the next piece of the puzzle came in from an even more obtuse angle – Patek Philippe, the watchmakers in Geneva. Their special magazine for select customers had quite a spread about Amateur Radio – and it WAS ON THE SAME IDEA!

 

Now, in my mind that magazine is targeted to the polo-playing crowd that has more money than God and eats in restaurants where I cannot even read the menu. But there it was – the lost art of true communication between people and the use of Amateur Radio as a way to put some light into the existentially gloomy isolation of text twitters and emails. OK, that was two places. It could be coincidental.

 

Then out came Forbes Magazine. Here it was again, Amateur Radio as a place where people belong and can actually explore the world on an individual and personal level. A rock group, the rich people and now the business CEO types all saying the same thing about ham radio! As a PR person, it really got my attention.

 

I always liked 17 meters SSB when it’s working. It was more than “5-9 bye” and has led to some of the most interesting contacts in my ham history. But I never put my personal radio experience together with existentialism before, and maybe we should all take a good look at that. The world is getting to be a very scary place. The coldness of a digital age, that was supposed to bring people together, has apparently only driven them further apart on a human level. If Amateur Radio can help fix any of that, we need to identify it and share that with others.

 

Sure, we help bring about “international good will,” but maybe we do a lot more. Maybe we help bring an inner sense of humanity and belonging. If so, that’s good news for modern man this season.