beige_alert: (Bike)
[personal profile] beige_alert
Amateur radio operators have all sorts of diverse interests, and there are contests and various awards for hams who have the persistence and skill (and equipment) to achieve some goal. As one example, there is the Worked All States award for making contacts with people in all 50 of the states in the USA. I was just thinking, though, that not everyone shares the goal of demonstrating skillful and cooperative radio operation. Some people have other interests. After scanning the local repeaters(*) yesterday afternoon, I propose the Kerchunked All Repeaters award, for people who kerchunk(**) every single repeater in a three county region a minimum of fifteen times each in a single afternoon. I'm confident that lots of people would pursue a Big Lid(***) Award eagerly!

Notes:
(*) A repeater re-transmits on its output frequency everything it receives on its input frequency. Normally it has a good antenna way up high in a good location, enabling people with less impressive antennas or hand-held radios to communicate over the entire city through the repeater system.

(**) Kerchunking the repeater is the practice of transmitting a few seconds of silence—and not giving your callsign, the sending of which is mandatory under the rules. This causes the repeater to fire up its transmitter, and then, when the few seconds of input is over, you get the burst of static, it sends a beeping sound, shuts back down (another burst of static), and sooner or latter it starts back up to transmit its callsign and possibly other info. A certain amount of this happens just by accident—when you have two different push-to-talk buttons and a tangle of wire stuff happens—but it pretty clearly isn't all accidental.

(***) Lid being ham radio slang (****) for an unskilled or rude radio operator.

(****) Hams have a lot of slang that sounds like the kind of slang that only an elderly white man would use. Um, probably just a coincidence...

Date: 2013-05-06 07:13 am (UTC)
hrrunka: A small radio transceiver (radio)
From: [personal profile] hrrunka
The local repeater gets a bit of deliberate kerchunking at times. It also gets a fair few flyby Echolink connections. Those do, of course (because Echolink does it automatically) give some hint as to who's at the other end, but there are clearly folk who spend their days on Echolink connecting to nodes, listening (presumably) for a few seconds, and then disconnecting...

Date: 2013-05-08 02:05 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] beige-alert.livejournal.com
I've read the theory that a lot of echolink users have actually never heard what it sounds like on the radio end. I often turn on my radio, listen for a short while, and, if nothing is going on, turn the radio back off, and no one knows. The echolink equivalent would have a computer slowly call out my call and possibly other stuff, possibly in phonetics. Twice.

Date: 2013-05-08 06:34 am (UTC)
hrrunka: A small radio transceiver (radio)
From: [personal profile] hrrunka
Entirely possible...

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