[OT] HAM Radio License
mwalker at kydance.net
Thu Apr 22 12:52:33 MDT 2010
On Thu, April 22, 2010 12:40 pm, Daniel C. wrote:
> On Thu, Apr 22, 2010 at 12:29 PM, Matthew Walker <mwalker at kydance.net> wrote:
>> Somewhat off-topic, but I just had to announce that last night I passed the tests to
>> my General Class License for HAM Radio. Went in to test for Technician Class, and they
>> encouraged me to take all the tests. Almost passed the Extra Class test without having
>> studied for it at all.
> I've always been curious - what exactly does one use a HAM radio for?
*ducks the thrown objects*
Seriously though, that's what they're for. Once you get into the longer wavelengths, you
can start to reach across the oceans and talk to people on the other side of the world.
Or do things like moon-bounce. (Reflecting signals off the moon to talk with someone.
HAM operators also help out a lot during emergencies by providing robust communication
networks that don't rely on existing phone lines or the internet. I can't say with 100%
certainty, but I would bet a large amount of money they were helping during the disaster
in Haiti, for example.
Plus, it's a fun way to learn a lot about electronics and circuit design, since you can
home-build a lot of stuff. For the more computer oriented, there's lots of digital
communication modes that let you use the amateur frequencies for data transmission and
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