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Surfin’: Beyond Digital Voice

08/12/2011

By Stan Horzepa, WA1LOU
Contributing Editor

This week, Surfin’ visits the diverse website of an old friend of the old contributing editor.

I know people.

I received an e-mail asking me how to get started in digital voice. That is one mode I have not yet explored, so I have no hands-on information to relay to my correspondent; however, I know someone who has lots of expertise in digital voice: Mel Whitten, K0PFX.

So I e-mailed Mel and asked if he would mind fielding some questions from my correspondent. Mel agreed to help. A few days later, I received a follow-up e-mail from my correspondent, indicating that he was a very happy camper after contacting Mel.

Mel and I go back a few years. I met Mel when he was on the TAPR Board of Directors and I was a hanging out with the crew manning the TAPR booth at the Hamvention back in the mid-1990s. Since then, we exchange e-mails regularly and see each other at the Hamvention and the ARRL-TAPR Digital Communications Conference (DCC).

Speaking of the DCC, it is coming very soon: September 16-18 in Baltimore. Mel will likely be in attendance and make a presentation: An Introduction to Digital Voice. I plan on attending, too. I hope to see Mel and you there, so make your reservations now.

Getting back to Mel: Whenever I see him at the Hamvention, I always ask him what he purchased, because he has diverse radio interests and his purchases are always interesting and often edgy.

Mel has a very cool website that reflects all his diverse interests in ham radio. It is full of links that amplify the information on Mel’s site. Clicking on the links reminds me of opening the doors of an Advent calendar, never knowing what you will find behind the doors, but knowing that whatever it is, it may be interesting.

Until next time, keep on surfin’!

Editor note’s: Stan Horzepa, WA1LOU, resides in downtown Wolcott, Connecticut, and is a member of the QQCC (QST Quarter Century Club), i.e., was a QST writer for 25 years. Since getting his ticket in 1969, Stan has sampled nearly every entrée in the Amateur Radio menu -- including a stint as Connecticut Section Manager -- but he keeps coming back to his favorite preoccupations: VHF and packet radio. As a result, he runs a 2 meter APRS digipeater and weather station from his hilltop location in Central Connecticut. Stan has been a longtime advocate of using computers with ham radio and wrote programs to dupe contests and calculate antenna bearings way back in 1978. Today, he is on the board of directors of the Tucson Amateur Packet Radio (TAPR) and uses his Mac to surf the Internet searching for that perfect ham radio webpage. To contact Stan, send e-mail or add comments to the WA1LOU blog.



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