tuskege airmen learning morse library of congress.png     
Tuskege airmen learning morse code (image from Library of Congress collection)


May - ICOM IC-705 updates and now using the Rtsystems software for configuration

Trying out RTsystems software - I can see the value in the software after spending a couple of hours essentially trying to build something like it in Excel.

The Northern California DX Foundation (NXCDF) putting sad ham DX losers on notice. The mystery of the dummy load and what is an M5stack?  May adventures in radio notes



April - ICOM IC-705 Problems, Troubleshooting, and a happy ending!

Troubleshooting mic problems and help from groups.io:  2023-03-28 ICOM IC-705 A problem, with a happy ending



March - Has anyone seen the Apple - iPhone Satellite Connection news?

I haven't seen any Amateur Radio commentary on the Apple iPhone- Satellite Radio Connection which is a little strange considering the potential impact this development may have on bringing new people into the Amateur Radio hobby. I only learned about the iPhone satellite connection a couple of weeks ago, but it looks like Apple has made this feature available for a few months now. You can read about the technology here: (Apple support).


Essentially the Apple Satellite Connection lets the (recent model/iPhone 14) iPhone owner send an emergency text message via Satellite to an Apple message center. The message center can then communicate with authorities. If you set up "Share location" ahead of time, then contacts that you share your location with can also see the transcript of messages being sent to and from your cellphone, satellite, and the message center.


I'm not an iPhone user myself, but in theory, I could be out with my family, at least two of whom have the iPhone 14, be out of cellphone range (the beach just a couple of miles from my house has zero cell phone coverage). In an emergency, they could point their cellphones at the sky and whip off a text-message call for help.


My own Android phone would not have service, and from experience, I could call CQ on 146.520 for hours if not days, and not raise a sausage. This could be huge as (a) it's excellent for non-ham users who are already carrying around an EMCOMM HT in their pockets (the iPhone), already know how to use it (it's a text msg), and (b) the iPhone app walks them through aiming the phone and contacting the satellite. No beam Yagi satellite seeking, no split signal management, no doppler shift alignment. Just text (or just SPEAK the text msg). Apple says this works from most anywhere on the planet - I think the ham radio for emergency communications may have just lost some of its argument at least in terms of why you should learn to use and own an amateur radio. Apple just made emergency satellite communications lower in costs. My son, Michael, took the above video screenshot of his iPhone 14 going through the demo:



February: "bits and bobs month"

shorkie dog with headset


February notes: Long Island CW classes - redux! Short-wave radio is still a thing. Yet another new antenna into the mix and the month has just barely gotten started.

January notes: Ham Radio University. A new case for the IC-705. Mag-loop antennas retro-fitted back into the ham shack and another Jean Shepherd file drops "the mysteries of code school and dx propagation on VHF"

December rollover Twitter and magloops are back

December notes: bring leaving Twitter and moving to Mastodon.; Fixing my mAT-705Plus ATU problem and magloops (really folded dipoles) reinstated in the ham shack.

The end of the igate experiment and a LIMARC hamfest

I wrap up the igate experiment as November brings an end to the project. I learned a lot more about APRS but at the end of the day, an igate repeater is a boring system (for me) even if it is busy, and mine was certainly not active. I also have another LIMARC hamfest coming up this month that I will talk about after the event and a new, so to speak, Jean Shepherd radio recording on his ham radio adventures - how do radios work? Enjoy!


This notebook section

I've had this online notebook running for quite a while, and although there are long stretches where I don't write anything, I find it helpful to refer back to things I've written for my benefit. I am new to amateur radio, getting my technician license in 2020. I tend to learn something I am interested in reasonably quickly, having worked in technology for a long time. This section summarizes things that I learned by picking up this hobby. If I write something today and then in the future realize that I have not correctly explained something or I have missed an important detail, then I update the note. Again, this is written for my reference, but if you also find it useful, thank you.


Mastodon: @kd2wll@mastodon.radio