The KD0BCF de KC0OW show on 3843 KHz

For my ham and SWL readers, I just wanted to point out a fun little thing that’s been going on for a while. KD0BCF, Tom, an atheist, and Scott, KC0OW, a christian, have been going at it, more or less politely, for some time now. I first ran into them SWL’ing the 75 meter ham band, and now I actively look for them, and if I find they’re on, I leave the dial right there.

Scott’s a lawyer, and you can tell that this forms the root of his arguing skills. Tom pretty much has Scott for lunch, or at least he has the times I’ve tuned in, but Scott’s ability to duck and cover and evade is right up there with some of the best I’ve seen. He also, it has to be said, appears to be very secure in his faith.

Both fellows are quite intelligent, and the tone of the rhetoric is generally well above what you’d expect for this kind of interaction, especially one that’s been going on this long. Kudos to both of them for keeping it mostly polite and cheery.

Subjects covered include religion (of course), politics, world events, fundamentalist broadcasts, Israel, Islam, etc.

A highly recommended little chunk of the SWL/ham experience. :)

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Credible Feminism and “Being Nice”

The following is taken verbatim from a letter I wrote to the New York Times on July 31st, 2013, in response to an article where the author spoke to the desirability of asexual dressing and avoiding being nice just for the sake of smoothing social interactions:

Credible feminism drives equality of power, pay, opportunity, and recognition. It’s not about wearing pants to deny or distance gender. Men and women are naturally and irrevocably different in their sexuality: behavior that celebrates this — including that which drives sexually tuned plumage — is not only reasonable, it is healthy.

Women will never bridge the very real gap by attempting to subvert their own sexuality, because in doing so, they cede many cues of desirability to others.

The same thing applies to “nice.” Nice people are selected ahead of others for many roles simply because it is perceived that it will be more pleasant to be around them. If you eschew “nice”, you cede yet another social slice of desirability to others.

In either case, such a choice is completely up to the individual — but the consequences won’t be.

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Yaesu FTDX-3000 Review

FTDX-3000I added the FTDX 3000 to my station in order to use it differently than most users will; my setup uses the transmit portion of the radio as usual, but utilizes the IF output on the rear deck to replace most of the receive capability with an SDR on the IF, and my SdrDx software working with the SDR. This works as planned, and so I am well satisfied with the radio in my installation. I get a far superior receive capability to any traditional radio on the market at any price including the very best from Yaesu, Kenwood and ICOM, *plus* the radio’s own capabilities as a medium quality second receiver in-band if I want that. I did my research, I got what I asked for, and I am happy as a clam. Also, confirmation bias, lol. But…
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On the use of Power Amplifiers in Amateur Radio

As many of you know, I’m a ham operator. I spend a lot of time listening to the HF bands, not a whole lot transmitting, but I do listen. One of the things that tends to irritate me is when I hear some wag putting someone else down because they have a “little signal”, by which they mean 100 watts or so.
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Something for you CW types

You know, I have to confess: CW isn’t my favorite operating mode. It’s ok; sometimes I tune down to the CW portions of the ham bands and copy it for a while just to keep my hand in, but not too often. Consequently, another confession: I’ve not looked really hard into SdrDx’s CW handling until today. When I did, I found there were improvements that could be made, and, because I’m somewhat compulsive, I went ahead and made them, and you’ll find them in the 2.12r OSX beta that’s available for download as of right now. But don’t stop reading yet, please.

My old J-38 straight key

The first thing I did was some work on the high and low adjustment ranges of the CW mode demodulator envelope; CWL now allows from -10 to -1500 Hz, CWU allows from 10 to 1500 Hz. These are sane ranges; previously, it was a little weird, and I apologize for that.

The second thing was change the demodulator envelope adjustment from 100 Hz/step to 50 Hz/step. This allows you to create a properly centered demodulator envelope of an odd width, such as 300 Hz, or to cut the bandwidth all the way down to 50 Hz — a little extreme perhaps, but amazingly usable if the received station is stable.

Lastly, I experimented a bit with the audio notches to see how to best tailor the audio, and I found that with the Q of a notch set to about the third hashmark from the right of the Q scale, the notch was narrow enough to sit right on the upper edge of the demodulator envelope. I’ll give a detailed example:
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Waiting for the new Mac Pro

A

Waiting...

Waiting…

pple announced a new Mac Pro today; twice as fast as the current model, which itself is faster than the one I presently own. But that’s all they did. Announce it. It’s not ready, there’s no date, there’s no price, and other than “faster” and “supports three, 4k displays” and “much smaller footprint”, there isn’t much other information either.

Sigh.

On other fronts, they’ve finally fixed the multi-monitor shortcomings in OSX; menus, full screen apps, etc. Kudos. Even iOS got a little love with folders that can hold many files, instead of just a few.

The new OSX makes me willing to go for a new Mac Pro, or at least, it seems that way with the limited information I have now. I can put the old fella up in the ham shack where it will do a fine job with the SDR up there; and the new hotness will (of course) drive my desktop, save me time on compiles and just about anything else… and I admit, I run my SDR from my desk even more often than I do in my ham shack. Not just testing, I like the sound of a radio in the background.

The question is, newest model that can only run three displays and has only a small internal SSD? Or the current generation that can do more displays and has room for standard internal HDs?

Apple really does test my patience. It’s been several years since they really gave the Mac Pro much attention, and frankly, I was getting close to building a Hackintosh or buying the current generation. Will they get the Mac Pro out in time? Should I go for newness, the current generation, hacking, or something used off EBay? I feel information-deprived.

Tune in this fall for the next installment of “As the Apple Worms.”

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New OSX and Windows version of SdrDx: 2.12q

SdrDx 2.12q adds full gain support for the AFEDRI SDR, Two additional features, control volume with SHIFT page up and SHIFT page down, and s-meter can readout pre- or post-attenuator. See the link to the changes document, below.


  Screen shot: http://www.flickr.com/photos/fyngyrz/8675326983/in/photostream/lightbox/
    Downloads: http://fyngyrz.com/?p=915
Documentation: http://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/sitemap.html
      Changes: http://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/changes212.html

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New OSX and Windows version of SdrDx – 2.12p

SdrDx 2.12p adds support for the Andrus, FunCube Pro Plus and AFEDRI SDRs; It also provides various features and fixes. See the link to the changes document, below.


  Screen shot: http://www.flickr.com/photos/fyngyrz/8675326983/in/photostream/lightbox/
    Downloads: http://fyngyrz.com/?p=915
Documentation: http://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/sitemap.html
      Changes: http://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/changes212.html

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