Field Day 2018

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Contest Radio Review 2018

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Column: HAM? HAM radio? ham radio? Amateur Radio? amateur radio!

Dan, KB6NU

On the ARRL PR mailing list, we’ve been discussing the proper way to refer to amateur radio. What brought this up was an email from one list subscriber, Richard, WB6NAH, who was (rightfully) proud of the work that his club—the Skagit Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Club—was doing. He noted that they were even featured in the police department’s emergency preparedness brochure:

The brochure refers to “HAM radio” and “HAM radio operators.”

Referring to amateur radio in this way just drives me crazy. “Ham radio” is just a nickname for amateur radio, and “HAM” is certainly not an acronym for anything. I congratulated Richard on getting his club included in the brochure, but noted, “…it’s not HAM radio! It’s either ‘amateur radio’ or ‘ham radio’ (ham is not an acronym). I hate to be nitpicky about this, but as a professional writer, this usage just drives me crazy.”

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Column: Noise floor report does not inspire confidence

Dan, KB6NU

Dan, KB6NU

By Dan Romanchik, KB6NU

Last June, the FCC’s Technical Advisory Committee asked licensed and unlicensed users of the electromagnetic spectrum to answer some questions about the noise they were experiencing and whether or not it was affecting their services. Specifically, they asked:

  • Is there a noise floor problem?
  • Where does the problem exist? Spectrally? Spatially? Temporally?
  • Is there quantitative evidence of the overall increase in the total integrated noise floor across various segments of the radio frequency spectrum?
  • How should a noise study be performed?

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