New DX Summit Website Seeking Beta Testers, Will Debut Formally by December 1
[Updated 05 Nov 2014 1955 UTC] The DX Summit website will soon have a fresh new face and a more modern user interface. The well-known and popular portal for getting DX spots via the Internet, operated by Radio Arcala OH8X in Finland, will become “My DX Summit” — MDXS for short — when it formally goes live for the Amateur Radio community by December 1. Right now, though, hundreds of volunteers are beta testing the new website and offering suggestions and changes in advance of the changeover from the current site to the new one.
“We ended up having 700 testers and early check-ins,” Radio Arcala’s Martti Laine, OH2BH, said this week. “Their input was very valuable, and we will implement those urgent ones immediately and process those many new ideas for continuing development work.”
Laine said that since “no major challenges” have been encountered and the system is holding up well, Radio Arcala may make the site live sooner than anticipated.
My DX Summit will display spots in HTML format as they are posted, so users will not have to wait for a new set of spots to reload every 60 seconds. The page has a clean and modern look and feel, and users can select filters in a check-off type menu. For example, users who don’t want to see any VHF spots can check a box, or they can check which VHF bands they do wish to receive spots for. Receiving only CW, SSB, or digital mode spots is just a matter of clicking the appropriate boxes in the filter menu. Selected filters are listed on the top of the display. In short, the new site will let users customize the cluster postings to their particular preferences.
With My DX Summit users no longer have to go to another menu page to share a spot. A dialog box appears on the right-hand side of the display. In addition to offering time and date filtering, the Spot Search menu lets the user download search results into a CSV file.
A “Tutorials” pull-down menu provides access to a comprehensive help file and instruction manual.
My DX Summit also will offer an “advanced propagation tool powered by VOACAP.” When users click on a spot it will display propagation to that location not only for that particular time but for an entire period of 24 hours on all bands. The site also will integrate a “DX News” section.
Radio Arcala said that a lot of effort — still ongoing — has been put into having MDXS work with a majority of mobile devices and browsers.
It’s expected that the advance testing process may result in some changes and additions to the site.
Laine said the current DX Summit site is serving some 143,000 unique users each month. “With all these new features, we plan to double the number,” he told ARRL. “What is amazing on our portal is that each user is spending an average of 55 minutes on the system. We will soon compete with their TV watching time!” — Thanks to Martti Laine, OH2BH