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SM2CEW's Blog

Deep Search needs “Assisted” category in the EME contest

CW is King! Posted on %PM, September 19 2012 21:38:27

Today I was looking at the scores from the 2011 ARRL EME Competition. Glad to see my score listed as #10 in the CW, all bands category.

However, reading the Soapbox comments by NZ5N made smile, but for another reason. This is what Bill is saying:

I decided to operate the contest by the rules, which means without
internet assistance. I was strongly opposed to the elimination of the
assisted category, and remain so, it just makes no sense, since those
who prefer unassisted are not competing against those who prefer
assisted.

Many who share this view opted not to participate in this
contest, but I decided to give it a try. Found myself missing the
camaraderie of the chat room, and learning about the equipment used by
the stations I worked.

Perhaps more importantly, this contest format
appears to eliminate QRP stations almost completely. As mentioned,
well over half the stations I worked were speaker copy, and only one of
the 55 stations I worked was below -22. I could have worked stations
at -28 or -29 if I knew where to find them. The ARRL needs to find a
way to get smaller stations involved in this, the most important EME
contest of the year.

73, Bill NZ5N“

Look at this statement:

this contest format
appears to eliminate QRP stations almost completely

!!!!????!!!!

I strongly oppose to this false statement! It is not the contest format that has eliminated the QRP stations, it is just a mere fact that the “Deep Search module” in Joe Taylors software JT65 will not print unknown callsigns on the screen. The program needs to know the calls in advance, otherwise it will not be able to perform it’s cheating guesswork.

So, without the “camaraderie of the chat room” Bill can not present new calls to the software as he is unaware of them, and the Deep Search module can not perform it’s cheat routine.

Not working QRP stations has nothing to do with the contest rules, it has to do with the inability of JT65 to copy really weak signals. The bigges advantage of the logger chatting therefore is to enter unknown calls into the program so that they can be “worked”.

However, nothing is further from the truth, these stations are not worked.

Deep Search is fooling the operator into beleiving that a valid QSO is taking place when it is not!

So I can understand why Bill is upset, but in reality he should redirect his frustration to the man who fooled a large part of the EME community into beleiving that they actually transfer full EME messages via the moon at Deep Search S/N levels.

That man is Joe Taylor, K1JT.

Members of the the ARRL contest committee are not to be blamed for creating a fair radio contest, free of online chatting.

CW operators don’t have to cheat, we decode signals as we hear them, no matter what the callsign is.

CW is King! It really is!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



Meteorscatter operating procedures that stink..

CW is King! Posted on %AM, October 10 2010 11:31:35

Yet another attempt from K1JT to minimize RF transfer in a meteorscatter QSO:

Very difficult QSOs are significantly easier if you use single-tone reports, rogers, and 73s. With just a bit of practice/experience, it’s very easy to tell a real “R26” from the occasional false decode of same. In most contests, of course, everyone should use grid locators.

WSJT 9.0 is set up to make all these things easy.

snip..

On the main screen you can select (or not select) single-tone messages for Rx, Tx, both, or neither.
— 73, Joe, K1JT“

I can not see any reason for using a single tones as messages in meteorscatter communication. A single tone is not a message. It is only a carrier that holds no other information than “it’s presence”.

This is the usual K1JT “make QSO’s as easy as possible” crap.

Very difficult QSOs are significantly easier if you use single-tone reports, rogers, and 73s”

Of course they are, you just need to receive a fraction of a carrier, no information what so ever. Then again, we see these QSO’s end up in listings as initials, new squares, distances etc.

If we accept single tones as a substitute for a real message then we might as well accept a tone for both calls also. Oh… not far from hashed calls in WSJT 9..

The downward spiral of QSO integrity, that K1JT started when he introduced his “Deep Search” concept (which is nothing but a guessing routine), is also taking meteorscatter to a record low if we accept his suggestions.

No need for IARU Region 1 to define QSO standards when a required message can be substituted by a single carrier.

The bright colour of the WSJT software package started flaking many years ago. Now the only thing left is it’s totally black cover.

In CW we don’t substitute messages with carriers, we chop the carrier up in a smart way so we can communicate in a secure and intelligent way, sending and receiving ANY message we want.

CW is King!!

73
Peter SM2CEW



Yet another round… big EGO’s driving for a rule change

CW is King! Posted on %PM, February 07 2010 15:00:56

In 2009 the ARRL EME Competition rules were excellent. The VUAC wisely eliminated the so called Assisted Category.

For a couple of years the ARRL EME Competition “Assisted Category” proved to be unique due to the fact that live communications via the Internet was allowed during the contest. Real time chatting, selfspotting, liason and confirming QSO’s was considered as part of the contest challenge. How stupid!

But the ARRL VUAC took notice and during the 2009 contest real radio amateurs were again roaming the bands, looking for stations to work. And what a success it was! Hundreds of stations made random QSO’s on all bands from 50 MHz and up.

We are waiting for the results to be presented, but what we can see so far is that the bands from 432 MHz & up were highly populated. With 2300 MHz CW probably showing the biggest increase of activity.

So, are we home free, have we seen the last of the Internet fest EME contesting?

I hope so. But dark clouds are visible on the horizon.

Clouds in the form of big EGO’s that demand an “all allowed” contest again.

These big EGO’s claim that they’ve been robbed of their contest. They also claim that newcomers can not enter EME any more and we will loose them forever.

What a load of crap, excuse my language. But I have no other word for it.

It is a fact that 99% of these EGO’s intend to operate digital using the JT65 protocol. And they live to 90% on either 144 MHz Street or 50 MHz Lane.

The JT65 protocol is not hopeless for random operation, it can be done. But when you use the cheating Deep Search option (and most EGO’s do), you need to know who is calling to make the program work because full calls are never exchanged.

Let’s put it straight, the bottom line is that a contest is a contest. Finding stations to work is part of the contest. Telling them via the Internet in real time where to be and what to do is not!

On behalf of the French ham society REF Philippe F6ETI and Patrick F6HYE have written a proposal to the upcoming IARU Region 1 meeting in Vienna. Their proposal is clear as a bell:

PROPOSAL

To take account of technological developments and in order to stay within the spirit of amateur radio contest it would be useful to draw up general rules specifying what a competition and what are a valid QSO :

Definition of a contest:
A contest is a competition between amateur radio that takes place exclusively on the bands allocated to amateur, with amateur means.

Introduce contest general rules:

The active use (posting messages, arranging skeds, self spotting, calling, heading management, frequency management etc.) of the DX Cluster and other spotting networks (including non amateur means eg. telephone, internet facilities like VHF and Microwave chats) to assist an entry to a contest is not allowed in all IARU R1, or in IARU R1 national contests.

You may spot a DX station as long as your operating frequency is not given.
For a complet and valid QSO, all information must be copied off air at the time of the QSO and on the band in use.

Databases must not be used to fill in missing information.

The DX Cluster, talkback channels etc. must not be used for passing or confirming any contest related information.

In the event of use of a talk back frequency (144 MHz if permitted, or lower UHF/microwave band), any return to this talk frequency in the course of session cancels information previously exchanged, and thus the QSO in progress.

Use of self-spotting techniques are inconsistent with the spirit and intent of these rules.

Skeds taken outside contest timeframe are not allowed.“

Very good proposal to the IARU Region 1. Philippe and Patrick are spot on.

I am sure that the EME community of real radio amateurs are supporting them 100%.

– Real contesters take pride in copying everything via the radio channel!

– Real contesters take pride in evalutating their scores in the interest of improving equipment, tactics and operating skills!

– Real contesters appreciate contest rules that prohibit cheaters from using chats and clusters to build up their score.

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



The forgetful scientist – or “Why tell the truth if it is counter productive to my marketing?”

CW is King! Posted on %PM, January 17 2010 18:38:24

Yes, it was about time.

Time to revise the “EME Communications” chapter in our ham bible, the ARRL Handbook, it’s been long overdue.

But the way it has been done certainly makes me and a lot of friends dissappointed.

The new text is totally in favour of digital EME (WSJT/JT65) and the author claims that digital is at least 10dB better than CW.

In essence, the bottom line is that newcomers should not try anything but digital EME in the form of JT65 and they should start by looking up Internet real time chatboards to get guidance during their first endeavours in EME. smiley

The Internet chatboards are even listed in the text so that digital moonbouncers don’t get lost and try random EME, for Heavens sake beware or random..!smiley

Really, this distorted way of inviting people to EME troubles me.

Who was chosen to rewrite the chapter?

– Of course, the editors of the ARRL Handbook asked Joe Taylor K1JT do to it.

Am I surprised? Not really. This is marketing of digital EME in the form of JT65, nothing less. After all, he invented the software, so why wouldn’t he say that EME shouldn’t be done without it..?

Now, the thing that really upsets me is the fact that K1JT refrain from telling the reader the truth about the extra 10dB his digital software is said to provide over CW.

The full chapter consists of thousands of words, but not once does he mention the Deep Search feature of his software! Not once. This part of the truth is totally left out of the context.

As we all know it:

– The truth is that Deep Search never communicates full callsigns.
– The truth is that Deep Search is incapable of communicating full callsigns.

– The truth is that the Deep Search routine is not a QSO!

Furthermore, the truth is that a said 10dB difference lies in the fact that JT65 Deep Search never does what a CW operator does, i e copies the full message as it is transmitted! smiley

Deep Search is cheating the operator into believing that the computer has received the full message from the station at the other end.

This is NEVER mentioned in the ARRL Handbook chapter – EME Communications!

It is hard to understand why the editor of the ARRL Handbook is unwilling to disclose the secret of this communication protocol to it’s readers. smiley

It is however easy to understand why the author Joe Taylor K1JT is unwilling to reveal the truth. To do so it is necessary to reveal that the Deep Search feature is incapable of making a QSO on the air! Deep Search can not communicate callsigns. It is a guessing excercise that relies on having all the information avaliable to the CPU in the computer. As the chapter is so full of scientific data, why not add this little bit to the text also??

Joe Taylor K1JT is again doing what he is best at – full fledged unreserved marketing of his cheating software – by omitting the truth when comparing it to the king of modes – CW!smiley

We CW operators have no need to hide the truth, we know what CW stands for and what it is capable of – real QSO’s in real time – no need to know the information before we decode it!

CW is King!

Oh, by the way, here is a link to The ARRL Handbook Chapter EME Communications

73 de Peter SM2CEW



The IARU Region 1 VHF Managers handbook

CW is King! Posted on %PM, July 28 2009 18:20:37

The updated 2009 version of the IARU publication “VHF Managers Handbook” is out.

Chapter 7 deals with operating procedures, and already in paragraph 7.1 we can read the following:

7.1 Minimum Requirement for a valid QSO (Vienna 2007)

A definition for a valid QSO on VHF and on higher bands is:

A valid contact is one where both operators during the contact have
(1) mutually identified each other
(2) received a report, and
(3) received a confirmation of the successful identification and the reception of the report.

It is emphasized that the responsibility always lies with the operator for the integrity of the contact.

Ok, so far we “sort of” understand the meaning, can it be clarified furter?

Yes, paragraph 7.2 deals with what we enjoy so much, weak signals on VHF/UHF.

The “Weak signal QSO procedure” says:

“VALID CONTACTS
A valid contact is one where each operator has copied both call signs, the report and a confirmation that the other operator has done the same. This confirmation may either be an “R” preceding the report or a string of three consecutive “rogers” (RRR).”

Right! Now we understand that the IARU is interested in us making real QSO’s, not fake JT65 Deep Search transfer of virtually now information via the radio channel. As we know, Deep Search is instead heavily dependant on the information being present already in the computer.

So.. we continue reading, now paragraph 7.4.9:

7.4.9 VALID CONTACTS
A valid contact is one where both operators have copied both callsigns, the report and an unambiguous confirmation. However no recourse should be made during the contact to obtain the required information, change of frequency, antenna direction, etc. via other methods such as the DX Cluster, talk-back on another band, etc. Such secondary methods invalidate the meteor scatter contact.

In essence: if anything concerning the ongoing QSO attempt is agreed through other means than the QSO attempt frequency a new start is required.“

WOW! Couldn’t be better! The IARU VHF Managers wants us to use the radio channel rather than the internet chatboards to make valid contacts.

This so so far from the JT65 digital crowd who uses chatboards all the time to pass vital information before and during the so called “QSO”.

Hence, their QSO’s are all invalid.

For CW operation we really don’t need these clarifications. It is routine for us to complete our contacts via the radio channel, without telling the other end via the internet what is going on.

We are better, period!

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



Show the world you log on the DX-cluster

CW is King! Posted on %PM, August 31 2008 19:36:43

The world wide DX-cluster is intended to be used to spot stations, so that others can find out where they are, and possibly work them.

EA6VQ (AO6VQ) is however using the cluster to spot his logbook, and we can only speculate about the reason for it.

Take a look at this extract of the cluster, on August 31 2008:

AO6VQ 144139.0 EB3DYS JM19MP<EME>JN11CK -16 dB 1628 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 W4RBO JM19MP<EME>EL99KF -23 dB 1622 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 N4BH JM19MP<EME>EM95OC -17 dB 1613 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 DL9MS JM19MP<EME>JO54WC -22 dB 1606 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 KE7NR/P JM19MP<EME>DM54AH -13 dB 1557 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 NG9Y JM19MP<EME>EM78JT -20 dB 1551 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 VA3TO JM19MP<EME>FN03CQ -16 dB 1453 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 OH7PI JM19MP<EME>KP42HF -14 dB 1431 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 K5QE JM19MP<EME>EM31CJ -7 dB 1406 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 ES6DO JM19MP<EME>KO27WX -22 dB 1356 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 W1IPL JM19MP<EME>FN54FC -20 dB 1322 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 KA8HOK JM19MP<EME>EM89 -23 dB 1312 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 NZ3M JM19MP<EME>FN10PD -25 dB 1224 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 K4SV JM19MP<EME>EM85WF -17 dB 1216 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 EA3BB JM19MP<EME>JN01VS -18 dB 1033 31 Aug
AO6VQ 144139.0 DK5SO JM19MP<EME>JN58AV -22 dB 1004 31 Aug

Not one of these spots is intended to help others to work the station spotted, because they are all on AO6VQ’s frequency. So he is kindly providing his log to the world, for everyone connected to the cluster..

But as always, there are also other reasons for this behaviour. AO6VQ is working JT65, and as no one is ever tuning the band to look for signals, selfspotting is mandatory. So, the above is of course also selfspotting, all in the interest of letting other JT65 users know what frequency to dial up to hear AO6VQ.

Why else would he spot OH7PI and DL9MS, who he has probably worked at least 25 times over the years..

Let’s take a look at what is happening on the internet chatboards at the same time.

First the ON4KST VHF chatboard:

16:40:03 EA6VQ Gabriel ((( AO6VQ CQ EME on 144.139, JT65B, 1st )))

aha… selfspotting there too… yes, to operate JT65 one needs to be everywhere..

Ok, let’s take a look at the N0UK EME chatboard:

08/31 16:50 ((( AO6VQ CQ on 144.139, JT65B, 1st )))

aaah yes… another selfspot, in yet another place.. making effective use of JT65..

Why am I showing you this?

Well, it has to do with the topic below, that deals with the ARRL EME Competition and the Assisted category.

This is how JT65 operators operate. They constantly selfspot to work stations, even operators like EA6VQ/AO6VQ, using very large EME arrays and high power.

And to enter the ARRL EME Competition, they want to be able to use the same behaviour to put contest “QSO’s” in the log.

Amazingly the ARRL accepted this, after pressure from the WSJT inventor K1JT and digital EME operators like W5UN and others. In fact, the ARRL now encourage this behaviour as it is (again!!) allowed in the 2008 ARRL EME Competition coming up this fall.

This is surely not bringing our hobby and the operating practices forward. And I see no skills being developed when operating like this.

CW operators don’t have time to sit on loggers and chat, they are instead focusing on digging out signals from the noise, coming from the radio..

CW operators are pro’s!

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



The ARRL has done it.. again..

CW is King! Posted on %PM, August 30 2008 20:56:24

The ARRL EME Competition last year (2007) was a disaster.

The rules were re-written for the upteenth time, accomodating 144 categories, and the full use of internet loggers and chatboards was encouraged. Not even the ARRL Contest Committee could get the results right, and reports of clear violations of contest rules were left unnoticed.

The ARRL Web report following the contest contained these words from Ward Silver N0AX at ARRL:

[A note from the editor, Ward Silver NØAX] The EME competition covers a large number of bands and in several different modes of operation.

This means a lot of categories! 144 categories, to be exact. Only 28 categories had entries from a total of 184 entries, so perhaps this pie is being sliced a bit too narrowly?

As a counter-example, the DUBUS EME competition (http://www.dubus.org) has six basic categories: QRP/QRO/PRO, SSB-CW/Digital, and Multi-Op.

You might offer your thoughts on the appropriate number of entry categories for this event to contest@arrl.org.“

I can assure you, plenty of people sent suggestions to the ARRL, hoping for a change.
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Well, did the ARRL take noice??

In short… NO! Of course not. The rules for the 2008 contest are identical to the stupid rules from 2007!

“Assisted” is still a category that allows parallel liason via the internet, and selfspotting is allowed.

I must say, this puts the ARRL EME Competition in a class of it’s own, and we are NOT to be proud to be there.

Take a look at what other organizations say about parallel internet communications, and selfspotting.

*************************************************************
CQ Contest Committee
“ANY use by an entrant of any non-amateur means including, but not limited to, telephones, telegrams, internet, Instant Messenger, chat rooms, VoIP, or the use of packet to SOLICIT, ARRANGE, or CONFIRM any contacts during the contest is unsportsmanlike and the entry is subject to disqualification. Action and decisions of the CQ WW Contest Committee are official and final.”

*************************************************************

IARU Region 1

“The active use (posting messages, arranging skeds, self spotting etc) of the DX Cluster and other spotting networks (including internet facilities like VHF and Microwave chats) to assist an entry to a contest is banned in all IARU R1, or in IARU R1 national contests.

You may spot a DX station as long as your operating frequency is not given.
For a complet and valid QSO, all information must be copied off air at the time of the QSO and on the band in use. Databases must not be used to fill in missing information.

The DX Cluster, talkback channels etc. must not be used for passing or confirming any contest related information.

In the event of use of a talk back frequency (144 MHz if permitted, or lower UHF/microwave band), any return to this talk frequency in the course of session cancels information previously exchanged, and thus the QSO in progress.

Use of self-spotting techniques on packet or other mediums are inconsistent with the spirit and intent of these rules. Skeds taken outside contest timeframe are not allowed.”

************************************************************

And now compare the above with the ARRL EME Competition 2008 rules..

“3.5 Assisted operation (Assisted). Any active or passive use of amateur or non-amateur communication tools used during the contest period to solicit and/or coordinate a contact prior to the start of that contact. Once the process of making a contact started further coordination is prohibited until after the contact is completed in its entirety via the EME path. If, for some reason, the contact is not completed in its entirety via the EME path and another attempt is coordinated or arranged, the process of making the contact must be restarted from the beginning. Self spotting is allowed.”

************************************************************

Absolutely amazing…..!!

What the other big contest organizers consider as subject to disqualification, and inconsistent with the spritit and intent of the rules, is encouraged in the ARRL’s prestigious EME Competition!

Let me make it very clear, the demand for Assisted in this form is to 100% coming from the digital crowd using WSJT. They rarely, if ever, make a QSO without being connected to an internet chatboard at the same time, talking to the other party.

With this type of “Assisted”, how can one ever miss a contact, full confirmation is always achieved via the internet chat. There are no surprises, everyone who is following the chatboard is aware of where the new stations and multipliers are, and can notify them that they are now being “accessed” via the radio channel.

This has nothing to do with contesting, and the fact that the ARRL again chose to run the contest under the catastrophical rules compiled by K1JT in 2007 is a mystery.

Or is it.. ??!!

As a proud CW EME Contest operator, I am indeed in favour of the suggested total boycot of the ARRL EME Competition. This boycot should last until the rules are revised and a contest format is restored. This includes separating digital and analogue sections on different dates.

I am sure this would be in the interest of all CW/SSB operators, who have been robbed of the best annual EME contest, and an operating highlight exeeding everything else.

Isn’t it amazing how one person has been allowed to change the ARRL EME Competition because he launched a software that was hopelessly useless for contesting.

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Isn’t it equally amazing that the ARRL gave no thought what so ever to what this would mean to the respect for EME in general, and EME contesting in particular.

I think the words of CQ and IARU above speaks for themselves, and puts the ARRL in the shame corner.

Do we CW operators give up operating because of this?

– Of course NOT! We stay active on the bands, we are up for the challenge of completing EME QSO’s by using our skills and radiostations.

But we don’t send the log to the ARRL Contest Committee..

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



The 13th International EME conference

CW is King! Posted on %PM, August 08 2008 19:25:29

It is time for the 13th International EME Conference, this time in Florence, Italy.
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Over the years the EME conference has always hosted a forum, with discussions on operating practices and other matters of concern, like frequency plans and how to encourage more activity.

This time I could not see that such a forum was planned. But a good friend of mine in Italy made a suggestion to the organizers, and now a discussion regarding operating practices will take place at the conference, as usual.

My Italian friend requested me to send some input to such a discussion, and together with some other moonbouncers we came up with the following.

There are 3 proposals, all in the interest of improving EME.

Topic A – Separation of digital vs analog modes with separate Contests and Awards-Diplomas by mode.

Proposal A to the 2008 EME Conference in Florence:

Since the introduction of digital EME, it is clear that there is an imbalance between achievements making analogue or digital QSO’s. As things have turned out, there is no way of comparing historical award achievements when reading recent lists. Due to the imbalance it is also impossible for moonbouncers to rate their station in comparison to others, unless mode of operation is clearly indicated.

– We propose that the 2008 EME Conference in Florence, on behalf of the moonbounce community, send a proposal to issuers of awards and diplomas to make clear distinctions between analogue and digital in their programs.

Topic B – Online QSO exchange information to be banned

Proposal B to the 2008 EME Conference in Florence:

Over the years, the forum at each international EME conference has been focusing on operation practices for EME traffic. The decisions of these discussions have been well documented, and are always available via the GM3SEK website.

The QSO integrity has always been seen as top priority during these discussions, hence specific guidelines of QSO exchanges and procedures in the GM3SEK document. In recent years, violations of these guidelines and procedures are often up for discussion in different forums. This is due to the fact that new tools are available today, namely internet chatboards that allow real time communication, parallell to the ongoing EME QSO.

– We propose that the 2008 EME Conference in Florence, on behalf of the EME community, clearly state that online and real time QSO information exchanged during the QSO renders the contact incomplete. We also propose that the EME procedure documents on the GM3SEK website are updated accordingly with this statement.

Topic C – How to revert to Random QSOs instead of Logger QSOs.

Proposal C to the 2008 EME Conference in Florence:

In the interest of making the radio link of an EME QSO worth more, focus should more be on random operation rather than chatboard arranged QSO’s. This is mainly a behaviour of the digital community, and this results in the fact that stations trying to make random contacts are seldom acknowledged.

This is especially true when expeditions are active, skedlists are all administered via the real time communication on internet chatboards. Therefore, stations unable or unwilling to use chatboards are to be considered lucky if they manage to break a string of skeds with their random call.

– We propose that the 2008 EME Conference in Florence, on behalf of the EME community, establish and present guidelines intended to improve random operation. This can be through suggestions of frequency windows for random operation, for example 144.120 – 144.125 for digital, and 144.045 – 144.050 for analogue CW, or via suggestions of channelized operations in some form.

– We also propose that the 2008 EME Conference in Florence, on behalf of the EME community, strongly encourage DX-expeditions to do more random operation. This is easily done if the DX-expedition is not logging on to chatboards while operating.

– Last but not least, we propose that the 2008 EME Conference in Florence, on behalf of the EME community, suggests that contest organizers penalize sked QSO’s in a way that leads to more random operation. As a contest is about making QSO’s via the airwaves, contacts without parallell liason should be of considerable higher value.

End of proposals.

In the proposals above there is a reference to “we” in many places. I think I can state, without being overly cautious, that the proposals above are supported by me, SV1BTR, DL5MAE, SV3AAF, LZ2US and many more active moonbouncers.

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



The need for Deep Search

CW is King! Posted on %PM, April 25 2008 19:29:48

I am curious, why do people care so much about getting the calls of expeditions and new stations into the CALL3.TXT file in WSJT?

This file is essential for the Deep Search decoder, and if the call is not in that file, the fractional reception of data will not result in calls printed on the computer screen.

The author of the program, responsible for the con, says this and I quote K1JT:

Anyone who uses JT65 regularly knows that some 95% of all
QSOs using this mode have no need for the DS algorithm and
make no use of it at all.
smiley

This statement, as written, can only mean that the ones who do need DS
actually make QSO’s of less value than non-DS QSO’s? Why is the
functionality available then? smiley

Facts are:

Most all of the recently achieved DXCC’s rely heavily on Deep Search.
– 50 MHz EME rely hevily on Deep Search.
– EME DX-peditions rely heavily on Deep Search.

Some people now take pride in telling us how they use JT65, but never use DS. If
the DS concept would have been discussed before launching, would the EME
community have greeted it with open arms then?

Don’t think so. smiley

A while back many people were emptying their CALL3.TXT file to stop Deep
Search (on K1JT’s suggestion) when they discovered what it was all about.
Only to learn later that they could never switch DS off, when they put a
call in the “To Radio” box they always activated DS.

I appreciate the fact that people using JT65 take pride in not using DS, I
would just like to know why they say that??

But when K1JT says that 95% of the QSO’s made using JT65 have no need for the DS decoder, I am convinced that he is wrong. Why would every new operator, and DX-expedtion, be so eager to be in listed in the file if it had no effect on their EME operations?

No, the truth is that DS is providing QSO’s that aren’t QSO’s, and the impatient digital operator doesn’t mind the cheating this service is providing.

Has there ever been a need for a CW operator to get his call into a text file on a computer to be able to make QSO’s?

Of course not! smiley

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW

73 de Peter, SM2CEW



Deep Search vs the Truth

CW is King! Posted on %PM, April 20 2008 16:54:39

No matter what people like DF2ZC says in attempts to justify Deep Search, it is clear that he and others just drift around in circles.

Implying that the decoder is actually fullfilling the requirement of transferring full QSO data is nothing but a lame excuse for wanting everything, without putting in the real effort.

Klaus DJ5HG explains very well the truth behind the decoder, and the full concept.

This DS concept is only there because K1JT decided that a modern operator doesn’t have the patience to wait. Wait for an EME signal to be strong enough, or for the time when his station is REALLY capable of transferring the required information via the EME path.

The decision to releive the operator from the wait was the only way to gain the desired boost in interest for his digital software. JT44 and JT65 in it’s original form was not performing so well compared to traditional modes that it created enough of a crowd, apparently.

So, “extra dB’s” of sensitivity was invented, but as we now this is not the real truth.

I am often accused of talking rubbish (again today.. I quote “That is rubbish!”) when I say that the DS decoder is filling in missing information. Well, in all aspects it is doing just that!

How else can receiving fractions of a message, matching it with a full message, and then printing the full message not be filling in of information?! I don’t care if information technology calls this something else, this is what is going on.

So, something that was never received is presented to the impatient operator in full, as it is (and must be) known in advance. This is done just because someone (K1JT) decided that a modern operator can not wait long enough.

Then we come to the real issue, namely the demand from K1JT, DF2ZC and others that these so called contacts “must” be considered as valid, with full status for all known purposes.

– Do I need to say that I disagree..?!


Let’s move now to the IARU Region 1 meteorscatter procedure. This procedure is essentially identical to the old and well established EME procedure. Not one of the presently active Eu meteorscatter operators accept a QSO as being complete, without full copy of the required information, meaning all characters. This is taken to the extreme many times, and contacts are rejected if any of the information is missing or wrong.

We are still talking about digital transfer (FSK), but the same crowd that happily accepts K1JT’s fractional DS decoder concept for EME contacts, now dismiss such a concept for meteor scatter.

Partly, this is of course because there is an established and well documented IARU Region 1 MS procedure. K1JT even programmed his FSK441 software to comply with this procedure, and it is selectable.

But it is also because when playing meteorscatter the operator doesn’t have to wait for signals to get stronger, or for his radio station to grow to proper proportions to copy signals. Meteorscatter is just easier, so even the impatient accepts a full transfer procedure.

I feel that this is hypocrisy, and it can only be explained by returning to the fact that some want it all, for little or nothing.

And in this regard Deep Search has delivered, big time.

But, as I state in my article (www.sm2cew.com/Minimal_transfer.pdf) the one man decision is also leading us on a trail away from RF transfer of information, to a “let the computer fill in what you need to make this impossible contact” situation that is deteriorating our hobby.

The best outcome would be if for instance the IARU Region 1, being the region with most insight into VHF/UHF/SHF operations, would look at this as they did with the meteorscatter procedure. That is, continue the work that was started in Vienna in 2007, namely defining the criteria for a valid digital QSO.

Meanwhile, sponsors of award programs like DXCC should revise their decision to mix contacts of less value with contacts of historical status. The same goes for events like the ARRL EME contest, where the divison should be made in dates, not in 100+ categories.

And I think a good discussion for the EME meeting in Florence 2008 would be how to highlight and sponsor RF transfer, while minimizing the “assistance” via internet loggers, AND doped computer decoding concepts.

We would all benefit from that, and we would also prove that David G4DHF is right;

RF is King!

When saying so, he defined our mutual goal, in very few words. And I think that you all now know what this means!

And when pumping out RF in the form of dots and dashes, we certainly have the most fun!

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



The ARRL EME Contest

CW is King! Posted on %PM, April 19 2008 13:40:29

This has been published on DF6NA’s moonbounce email reflectors, but as many people are not subscribing to that reflector I also publish it here.

I know that my thoughts are shared by many moonbouncers.

I can remember when the ARRL EME Competition was the highlight of the year for moonbouncers. The rules were clear, and easy to understand. Reading the results and comments in QST was something to look forward to, and achievements were never questioned, insted they encouraged us mere mortals to push on forward, and improve our stations and operating practices.

Not so any more… the way the contest is handled is a total insult to those participating, especially those who praise fair game and contesting.

Why have we seen this transformation from a highly respected event to an embarrassing soap opera?

Well, the reason is clear, it’s because of the constant maneuvering with new rules, and the total lack of enforcement of rules.

A bit of background information:

After the 2006 EME contest I sent a formal protest to the contest committee regarding stations who openly violated the rules. I also forwarded a number of logger and cluster extracts to show the committee what had been going on, and pinpointed the violations in these documents. This was also the sole reason for me entering “Assisted” category that year, as I had been monitoring loggers and clusters (of no use to me as a CW operator).

A while later, I was sent the full contest database, with the request to help identify the stations who were violating the rules. I did so, and sent the information back to the ARRL, hoping for a bit of correspondence regarding this issue. I received an acknowledgement that they had received the information.

When the results were finally published, I discovered that a number of stations had been moved to “Check Log”, instead of being disqualified. As we all know, K1JT has been telling us that HE (and only he) examined the contest results, in search for violations of the rules. This he said, was in the interest of keeping it a fair game, and to enforce the rules.

Well, the only thing he did was to save his friends from the embarrassment of being disqualified, so it is clear that some officials at the ARRL are not at all interested in a fair game.

– Why bring this up at this point then?

Well, only to point at the fact that since 2006 the same person responsible for the above blocking of rule enforcement was involved in yet another revision of the contest rules, namely in 2007.

Too eager to share the thoughts with the community, K1JT presented the new rules even before the ARRL had them on their website.

The analyzis of the rules, presented together with (one) version of the results, is clear, and on the ARRL webpage we can read the following statemend from Ward Silver N0AX:

144 categories, to be exact. Only 28 categories had entries from a total of 184 entries, so perhaps this pie is being sliced a bit too narrowly?

So, is there a reason for creating so many as 144 categories in one contest..??

Of course there is, everything is now so sliced up that a disqualification should not be an issue any more, as no one has the ability to understand the rules any more. Let alone send a formal protest..

– Am I wrong in drawing these conclusisons…?

Don’t think so.. not even the ARRL have been able to present the correct results, despit many attempts. And the results published in QST Magazine still stands as the only printed results, and they will probably never be corrected. Why embarrass even more people by putting it right?

My “verdict” over all of this is, that when we let one man dominate EME, and decide for all others, this is what to expect!

These actions are not possible to sweep under the carpet, because the contest is ruined for all future as it seems now. There will still be people entering the contest, of course, but it is not a contest any more. It is a joke of a contest, serving no purpose other than acting as an activity enhancer.

This is good however, we need stations populating our bands. But the so called records set under present circumstances have absolutely NO value, and are not to be compared to the records set when the ARRL EME Competition was a true contest, based on a fair game for everyone.

Let’s not be fooled into thinking something else.

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



Small stuff works..

CW is King! Posted on %PM, March 30 2008 14:16:36

I just need to tell you this story about a meteorscatter QSO I had today on 144 MHz with Toralf DJ8MS at a distance of >1400km.

Meteorscatter is like fishing, you never know what to expect. Toralf and I have made numerous QSO’s reflecting signals via meteor trails before, but this time the antenna at his end was certainly a bit different.

Take a look at this picture… Can you spot the antenna??

Blog Image

Yes, it’s an HB9CV, strung up with ropes in Toralfs apartment window, pointing north.. With a Mickey Mouse lookalike “Twiggle” dangling on the RG-58 feedline..

We completed via meteorscatter in about 10 minutes, and Toralf was running 150w into the HB9CV.

CW QSO of course?!? No, we used DIGITAL mode, WSJT FSK441..!!

Digital mode… SM2CEW…??! Yes, it is for real… occasionally I am using digital modes.

FSK441 transfer is character by character, just like with CW, only at higher speed.

So, what is sent is also being decoded, and there is no Deep Search database to fake a QSO by filling in stuff that was never received.

Well done Toralf, your HB9CV in the window is reaching out very well! I know, because just like in CW, all of the info was passed via the radio.

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



Third party involved.. ?!

CW is King! Posted on %PM, March 17 2008 22:13:16

I am not that involved with the N0UK JT65 EME chat, but it for some reason my desire to highlight some of the goodies going on there can make me the third party of a QSO…

Check this out, it’s a beautiful logger talk through QSO-session between HB9Q, DF2ZC and HL4GHT. Bernd and Dan are carrying on as usual, chatting away so they won’t loose the grip of this rare DX station ..

– HL4HGT…pse ur freq, Kim? (DF2ZC Bernd)
– 144.150. JT6B (HL4GHT Kim)
– HL4GHT Kim, I will call you next period! GL! (HB9Q Dan)
– Dan, thanks (HL4GHT Kim)
– HL4HGT….Kim, is possible after Dan? (DF2ZC Bernd)
– 155900 3 -22 2.5 242 1 * HL4GHT HB9Q JN47 1 10 (HL4GHT Kim)
– HL4GHT Kim, please do not spot details of an ongoing QSO! (HB9Q Dan)smiley
– HL4HGT…..calling you now after Dan, Kim. yes? (DF2ZC Bernd)
– HL4GHT Kim, mni tnx fr fb QSO! 160000 0 -26 2.5 -11 2 * HB9Q HL4GHT PM35 0 6 (HB9Q Dan)
– Bernd, ok (HL4GHT Kim)
– sri…txd wrong callsign HL4HGT…now correct HL4GHT (DF2ZC Bernd)smiley
– Bernd, thanks nice qso. (HL4GHT Kim)
– 160900 2 -25 2.5 223 3 * HL4GHT DF2ZC JO30 1 10 (HL4GHT Kim)
– HL4GHT…Kim, pse continue…with callsigns not complete yet (DF2ZC Bernd)smiley
– Callsigns and if you copy me O (DF2ZC Bernd)smiley
– 161500 3 -25 2.5 223 3 * HL4GHT DF2ZC JO30 1 10 (HL4GHT Kim)
– HL4GHT….nw rx ur 73s, many thanks for nice QSO. only my 2nd HL station 🙂 (DF2ZC Bernd)
– 162400 2 -30 -190 1 73 (DF2ZC Bernd)

– SM2CEW? Did you take all notes Peter or do you want me to send you a transcript? 😉 (DF2ZC Bernd)

There it is…!! The third party traffic.. and I was not even there at the time..smiley

Bernd could sense that this would end up on my blog, I just wonder why…?

Could it be because he knew that the contact would never have taken place without explicit instructions to HL4GHT what to send, and when..?

Of course that’s the reason. And I am being treated as the third party, the book keeper in SM2.. love it..smiley

As Philippe said to Bernd after his “QSO”:

– well done bernd!! (F1DUZ)

I agree!


By the way, this past weekend I took part in the Dubus 432 MHz CW EME contest.
It was pure fun, all random, and all contacts were made via the radio!

– Needless to say, CW is King!
Blog Image

73 de Peter SM2CEW



What is copied at -31dB?

CW is King! Posted on %PM, February 23 2008 16:22:22

W7GJ told us this on the Moon-Net reflector:

It was definitely worth getting up at 4 am this morning! I completed with JD1BMP on 2m at 1141Z, and then completed with BY7PP on 6m at 1216Z. Both were new DXCC for me, and the BY7PP contact was the first EME contact from BY, and a first for North America on 6m.

BY7PP was running a single Create 6 element yagi, horizontally polarized, aimed at the horizon on their moonrise, with 100w. Their JT65A signal was only -31 dB here – obviously the absolute minimum signal possible for me – I had not really expected to copy anything from them until they get more power, so I was quite pleasantly surprised! Degredation today was 2.9 dB and Kp index was 2.3“

Well.. choosing the word “copy” is highly misleading, to say the least. But it is part of the marketing of JT65, and Deep Search in particular. So it is no surprise that this word is chosen, check out my “History of a con artist” below for more reference regarding this.

At the signal level reported, very little is actually copied, the rest is filled in from the information in the “To Radio:” box of the program.

DL8EBW who is an active moonbouncer once told a friend on a chatboard that the way to get a small station in the log is to set the sync negative, and switch on “Agressive decode”. Then you just have to sit back and wait for the right call to pop up. After that he said, you can put the parameters back to default.

So how much information was actually received at W7GJ that morning? smiley
– Not even information equivalent to two characters is the answer… smiley

Thats pretty good DXCC value for those fragments of information received..! smiley

One particular German say, that when I present this information, I also qualify for membership in a group who believe that the earth is a disk..

Well, I can tell you.. the people who say this are part of the group who believe that the Deep Search module in JT65 is capable of decoding full EME messages… smiley

Conclusion:

– QSO’s made using the Deep Search module are worth nothing.
– A DXCC award achieved by using the Deep Search module is worth nothing!

CW is King!
73 de Peter SM2CEW



New country in the log, first XX to YY…!

CW is King! Posted on %PM, February 23 2008 15:56:31

Another “First” was claimed last night.. this time for 432 MHz and it was HB to BY, or BY to HB, which ever way we twist it.

Are we impressed.. not the least. This is another example of a QSO that never would have take place without parallell liason via the internet chatboard N0UK.

Again, another night at the N0UK EME Café:

– BY7PPWong can we try at 2meter after? will have good groundgain in 10 minutes(PE1L)
– sked on 432, we will come back 2m (BY7PP)
– Dan, now lsn u on 432.0764( BY7PP)
– BY7PP Wong, okay, pse call on my echo! (HB9Q)
– Dan, can u read me?(BY7PP)
– BY7PP Wong, have trace, pse go-on! (HB9Q)
– Dan, u rx freq pes? (BY7PP)
– BY7PP Wong, I have trace, no decode yet, pse go-on! (HB9Q)
– Dan, now Tx on 432077, Rx on 432076.3 (BY7PP)
– BY7PP Wong, 432.077 (HB9Q)
– Dan, my rx tx also set to 432077? (BY7PP)
– BY7PP Wong, pse tx on 076.3, exctly where you rx my signal! (HB9Q)
– i promisse i will never take 70cm on my next expeditions! (PE1L)
– BY7PP Wong, too weak… tnx fr test! let’s try later again! GL! (HB9Q)
– pe1l u can work 3 or 4 stn…hi (DL9MS)
– Dan, call u now (BY7PP)
– HB9Q Dan you take a lot of time from people who like to work a new # !!(PA0ZH) – PA0ZH yes and no, he likes to work the first 432 from BY as well… so it is his call!(HB9Q)
========= CQ 432.065 1st ++++++++++ (BY7PP)
– BY7PP Wong, keep going! (HB9Q)
– HB9Q Dan, u still on 432077? (BY7PP)
– BY7PP Wong , no 065 you 1st! (HB9Q)
– Dan, now 065, 7PP 1st (BY7PP)
– BY7PP Wong getting strong now! (HB9Q)
– BY7PP Wong, congrats! mni tnx fr QSO, best -24! (HB9Q)
– HB9Q Dan, Tnx you new DXCC on 70cm , 73 GL!! (BY7PP)
– BY7PP Wong, mni tnx! what is ur ant and pwr and my report please? (HB9Q)
– Dan, u best -18, my setup 70W and 2×20 (BY7PP)
– BY7PP Wong, many thanks! vy 73! (HB9Q)
– Dan, BY7PP is u new DXCC on 70cm? (BY7PP)
– BY7PP Wong, yes, first ever on 432! (HB9Q)
– Dan, I think, this’s 1st BY-HB 70cm EME QSO (BY7PP)

———————————————————————————————-

Yes, a first ever, what a highlight in EME history.

Compare this to the challenge of working VP6DX expedition active from Ducie Island on the HF bands just now. There the super operators at both ends dig out calls, reports and acknowledgement to complete the contact, without prior knowledge, and without a parallell real time communication link !

The HB – BY “EME-QSO” achievement is lightyears behind the value of a VP6DX expedition QSO, but for DXCC the contacts are equal. Don’t tell me this is OK..

CW is King!
73 de Peter SM2CEW



Dumbing down of EME?

CW is King! Posted on %PM, February 23 2008 15:23:10

You know that I have said it before, but the JT65 Deep Search module is part of the dumbing down of our beloved moonbounce hobby..

But fortunately, with the help of chatboard loggers (!!) people can be put straight.. if only the experienced take time, or have the guts to do it.

Our sincere thanks this time for helping out go to KB8RQ and W7MEM.. else VE6CPP probably would have counted HS2CRU as a new DXCC..

From the N0UK Digital café:

01:51 Ahh.. I messed up again!! HS2CRU ?? (VE6CPP)
01:53 I think i missed a decode when i changed freq.. thats twice
now! Ime learning! lol de (VE6CPP)
01:54 VE6CPP would you like to try a few sequences with
me? (W0PT)
01:54 we can try Bill.. ime running outta Moon here.. .127? (VE6CPP)
01:55 VE6CPP Jer what frequency you on? I copied you a while
ago at -23. (KB8RQ)
01:56 .127.. copied HS2CRU sending me a Rpt.. (VE6CPP)

01:56 qsy to .112.. 1st.. (VE6CPP)
01:56 That is a false decode. I have been on 127 for a long time. (KB8RQ)
01:58 Anything with a ? mark is a false decode. (KB8RQ)

01:58 013700 0 -5 6.6 59 1 # VE6CPP HS2CRU OK03 OOO 0 8 ? (VE6CPP)

02:00 I think it was when i chngd freq.. went to look for another
CQ.. (VE6CPP)
02:00 There is a ? mark at the end. That means it is a bad decode. (KB8RQ)
02:01 No.. the ? was from me !! I think it was a Gud Decode.. just
Inexperienced Op’ that QSY’d too fast!! (VE6CPP)

02:05 HS2CRU OK03 Does not even have a moon for many hours yet. (KB8RQ)
02:07 I belive HS2CRU is also QRT (W7MEM)”

—————————————————————————————————-

So, HS2CRU did not have moon… ouch… and he is known to be QRT… double ouch..

But, isn’t it amazing though, when we think about it..

The false decode “accidentally” contains this newcomers exact call, and the other station IS sending him a report..!!

So, we are back where we started, how can we ever trust people who claim they worked this or that, when the Deep Search module invented by K1JT was doing the work for them..??!

To me it is still unbelievable that so called QSO’s by using the Deep Search module gain the same status as regular old CW/SSB QSO’s for contests, DXCC or other award programs.

For obvious reasons,
CW is King!!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



JT65 operators, what if…??!

CW is King! Posted on %PM, January 26 2008 19:12:59

What if JT65 operators would:

– tune the band and look for signals?
– stop constantly self spot on chatboards?
– stop constantly self spot on clusters?
– then call CQ for a while to see what happens?
– concentrate on the info received via the radio?
– stop demanding that the other station is “connected” to the internet at all times?
– stop passing vital information via the internet before the QSO is complete?
– click “Deep Search off”?

I for one would have an easier time reckognizing their efforts as achievements! And the ham community would start looking at EME again with eyes of admiration, and not point fingers like they do now, and call it an internet computer game.

Why do I bring this up just now?

The answer is, because of the
recent BY7PP EME expedition. Behaviour on the EME chatboard N0UK this
week leaves little doubt as to where we have ended up. I have seen
nothing to admire on that chatboard! All of the above is applicable to the JT65
crowd on N0UK, unfortunately.

But what about us, do we CW operators:

– tune the band and look for signals? YES!!
– self spot on chatboards? NO!!
– self spot on clusters? NO!!
– call CQ for a while to see what happens? YES!!
– concentrate on the info received via the radio? YES!!
– demand that the other station is “connected” to the internet at all times ? NO!!
– pass vital information via the internet before the QSO is complete ? NO!!
– click “Deep Search off”? NOT APPLICABLE!!

So, it stands pretty clear where we constantly find good achievers, operators that we can admire for their skills and patience. smiley

We find them where the CW crowd hangs out!

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



What’s wrong with digital communications tools ??

CW is King! Posted on %PM, January 11 2008 18:31:37

The answer to the question is, of course;

– There is (almost) nothing wrong with digital communications tools !!

It’s when yo put these digital communication tools like JT65 in the hands of impatient people, who want to “score” without an effort, that problems arise…

We have just seen another ARRL EME Contest go by, and the soapbox comments are full of statements:

I managed to work 122 QSO’s on JT65 this year, using my 4 yagi system” or

Wow, I worked 54 different stations via EME thanks to the fantastic JT65, and I only use 2 yagis!

What made them so successful then, what is the reason??

First, let’s take a look at what W5UN said a while back:

I have made a decision here about how I will operate in the second weekend
of the ARRL EME contest.

W5UN will use the EME Logger, the JT Logger, and any other available means
available that will lead to more QSO’s.

The strategy here is based on my desire to work as many stations as possible in the given time, and to help the smaller stations make their QSO’s. My experience during the first weekend with the JT mode (3 QSO’s in 6 hours) has convinced me that Logger assistance in spotting and schedule making during the contest is essential to making QSO’s using the JT mode.“

All readers should know, that W5UN has one of the worlds largest moonbounce arrays on 144 MHz, and is running full legal power.
Blog Image

With this station, W5UN was able to work 3 QSO’s in 6 hours during an EME contest, just by calling CQ.

His good buddy Lance W7GJ, who also has very large arrays for 50 and 144 MHz told us the following:

HERE HERE!!! That is one of the prime reasons why I have not bothered to submit logs for the EME contest over the last 10 years. I enjoy the activity that the contest generates, and try to get on as time permits, but my primary interest is to work new stations; I have absolutely no interest in foregoing tools that will help me accomplish that goal, just because the contest rules do not provide for information gained from the internet. I may have to submit logs again, and if I do, I will follow your lead 😉

GL and VY 73, Lance“

Of course, when two prominent American moonbouncers determine that by using JT65 and not selfspottning and lining up stations via chatboards they will not make any QSO’s, the ARRL came to rescue and changed the rules.

During the revision of the contest rules, major influence was seen from the inventor of JT65, namely K1JT. Who else..?!smiley

During the 2007 ARRL EME Contest self spotting and using chatboards was fully allowed. This is in contrast to the rules of ANY other ARRL contest!

There is no surprise that the rules were revised by K1JT to reflect the interest of digital operators, who are using a tool that without constant selfspotting is next to useless for making contest QSO’s.

But the interesting thing is, that when the ARRL allowed self spotting and using live chatboards, they described of the category as:

5.3.4 Single Operator, Mixed Mode, Assisted. This category is intended to
encourage smaller stations and operators who may be new to EME
. It applies only
to single-band operation on 144, 432, or 1296 MHz.

Oops…

So when the likes of W5UN and W7GJ demanded a change of rules and allow self spotting, the ARRL in the form of K1JT said they could have it, if they are small stations and newcomers to EME..!!

I love it!

So what will happen to the contest now, are the results of the Single Op/Mixed Mode/ Assisted category full of entries from newcomers in EME?

Will W5UN or W7GJ try to win the newcomers category?smiley

I doubt it!

And I can assure you, the chatboards and clusters were not packed with newcomers.. instead they were full or spots and messages from big guns, constantly lining up stations to work.

How in heavens name can we call this a contest?

Why isn’t there more patience among the digital crowd, why aren’t they constantly trying to improve their stations, and why aren’t they using smart strategies to build up their score instead?

Simple.. it’s because someone has invented a software that is hopeless for contest use and hopeless for random operation. smileysmiley

And if you run a modest station there is a 100% demand to know all the information about the other station in advance, prior to making the so called QSO.

Else they won’t score like their “successful” buddie, or the guy with a smaller station than they have..

Where is the pleasure in working 54 contest QSO’s, that we know not even W5UN would have worked, unless he was also using the internet to provide them..??!

The ARRL has ruined a fine contest that used to be about good operating practicies, and turned it into an internet fest.

And while doing so, they are now telling the big guns that they are using a behaviour appropriate and accepted only for newcomers to EME..!

Again, the problems with this contest is not due to the fact that a digital communication tool is available out there, it’s due to the fact that people are not able to use enough patience to make it work.

Plus, they don’t accept not knowing everything in advance so they can use the Deep Search module to provide QSO’s that aren’t QSO’s.

Hence, they all use the internet as a resource for making contest QSO’s.

To put it in perspective, take a look at the score of my good friend G3LTF. He worked 130 QSO’s or more on 5 bands, all on random and using no clusters or chatboards!

How did he do it????

He worked them on CW!!smileysmileysmileysmileysmiley

Well done Peter!

CW is King!!!

73 and ZUT de Peter SM2CEW



I want to work you!

CW is King! Posted on %PM, January 08 2008 22:10:10

This is the story about how bad it hurts to know that a new and interesting station is active on the radio, but the computer CPU can’t detect or decode him..

Or to put it another way;

– I wish I we had the big boys here who could tell us what is going on!

This is what happened on the JT65 chat one day.. I’ll lead you through the story, my interpretations are in bold text.

****************************************************************

16:39 === CQ 1st 085 ===== (VR2KW Wong)

16:40 WONG. WHERE ARE YOU LISTENING? I WILL CALL YOU BUT ABOVE 144.100 OK? (K6MYC Mike)
16:43 VR2KW CAN YOU RUN SPLIT AND LISTEN ON .125 (K6MYC Mike)

Right, let’s get this guy to pay attention to ME! smiley

16:43 K6MYC Mike, OK QSY 100 CQ 1st (VR2KW Wong)
16:45 RR WONG (K6MYC Mike)

That’s it.. now we’re in business.. let Deep Search rock and roll.. smiley

16:49 VR2KW, WONG WHAT IS UR STATION? (K6MYC Mike)

What… I’m not getting any decodes.. what is going on??!! smiley

16:50 ANYONE SEE A TRACE ON VR2KW? (K6MYC Mike)

Get with it guys, help me out here!! smiley

16:51 Mike, 200W and 2x9ele (VR2KW Wong)
16:51 I SHOULD SEE YOU WONG? (K6MYC Mike)

Aha.. I’ve worked soooo many smaller stations, but it ain’t happening… ??!!?? smiley

16:53 WONG I SEE YOUR MOON ELEV. AT 53 DEG DO YOU HAVE ELEVATION CONTROL? (K6MYC Mike)

– OK, let’s start checking the basics here.. smiley

16:55 Mike, my ant now is manus AZ/EL (VR2KW Wong)

– Phew…. he’s got elevation.. at least so it seems..
smiley

16:56 RR WONG. ARE YOU DECODING ME? (K6MYC Mike)
16:56 I AM TX 144.100.1 (K6MYC Mike)
16:56 Mike, no (VR2KW Wong)

– I sure expected something else… smiley

16:59 WONG ARE YOUR ANTENNAS VERTICAL POLARITY? (K6MYC Mike)
16:59 IF SO I JUST SWITCH TO H POL FOR YOU (K6MYC Mike)

– That’ll do it.. this bloody spatial offset and Faraday is killing EME.. smiley

17:01 Mike,VERTICAL (VR2KW Wong xx OL72dk 58.153.13.161)
17:02 IS ANYONE DECODING OR SEEING WONG VR2KW??? (K6MYC Mike)

– Come on guys, help me out.. who’s computer is actually seeing him????!!? smiley

17:03 TNX WONG (K6MYC Mike)
17:03 WONG I AM STILL CALLING YOU ON 144.100.1 2ND PERIOD (K6MYC Mike)
17:04 WE NEED GARY OR DAVE KB8RQ OR W5UN TO LOOK FOR WONG (K6MYC Mike)

– Where are the BIG boys when we need them..??! smiley

17:05 BACK TO V POL TX AGAIN (K6MYC Mike)

– Long shot, but it might work.. and I feel better doing something.. smiley

17:06 Mike, I need some time repl cable and connect AZ/EL rotator (VR2KW Wong)
17:07 Mike, I’m at 100 CQ 2nd (VR2KW Wong)

17:07 RR WONG ARE YOU STILL TRANSMITTING ON 144.100 1ST? (K6MYC Mike)
17:08 OK WONG I WAS ON THE WRONG PER FOR YOU NOW I TX 1ST (K6MYC Mike)

– Oh My God… we were both transmitting at the same time… ! So, I have found the problem!!! thank God for chatboards..! smiley

**********************************************************

This is every day EME on the N0UK chatboard, go take a look where the Digital Phantoms hang out. I can’t say that I like it. Too me it looks like talking to a Support Service when one has a computer problem!

Which is a good comparison actually, because during all of the above, it is only the computer that’s been listening to the radio noise! The operator was too busy typing and handing out orders!

A CW Phantom does his chatting on the air, using Morse code.

That’s a BIG difference!

And that’s why CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



Working a new country, what can go wrong..?

CW is King! Posted on %PM, January 08 2008 21:24:03

The DXCC award program on 144 MHz is flourishing these days, since the invention of JT65 Deep Search.

But, being on a chatboard also helps, this is an example of a fantastic QSO between FM5CS and OZ1LPR:

23:07 230400 3 -21 2.8 -46 5 # OZ1LPR FM5CS OOO 0 10 (OZ1LPR )

23:08 I still need the final (OZ1LPR)

23:13 231200 10 -25 -142 3 RRR 0 0 (OZ1LPR)

23:17 you copy RRR? (FM5CS )

23:18 yes I do very fine (OZ1LPR)

23:18 231600 10 -22 -177 1 RRR (OZ1LPR )

23:18 yes RRR to me now (FM5CS)

23:19 sending 73 now but pse qrx (OZ1LPR)

23:22 now I se the 73 :O) (OZ1LPR)

23:22 speaker 73 now (OZ1LPR )

23:23 ok RRRRR very good this time! ( FM5CS)

23:24 New DXCC and # fir me :O) QSL goes direct to you (OZ1LPR)

23:24 I se 73 again :O) I stopped TX (OZ1LPR )

As you know, I have been over this before.. but is this really a valid QSO???

If we look at the times inbetween the first messages, we see that 4-5 minutes of silence on the chat makes it impossible for these guys to stay calm..

They can’t stand the uncertainty, so they have to start asking each other what message is now being processed by the CPU of the computer!

God forbid, should they have to decide only by what is received via the radio link..!

But the chatboard makes it a fool proof contact, and the QSL can go out via mail the next day!

No wonder some get their DXCC awards so quickly these days..
Blog Image

– If it is one thing we CW operators are well equipped with, it is patience!!

We use the receive periods to focus on what the other guy is sending, rather than asking him on a chatboard what he is up to..

That’s why CW is King!!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



History of a con artist..

CW is King! Posted on %PM, November 09 2007 22:49:22

The other night I was going through some old email archives, just taking a look at what was being said a few years back when Deep Search was launched.

This interesting statement from K1JT popped out of the archives:

A new decoder for JT65 modes that is about 4 dB more sensitive than any previous version. Some new features also serve to make JT65 more “random friendly” in operation.

With the new JT65 decoder, full decodes of standard EME messages (two callsigns, a grid locator, and an optional “OOO” signal report) are now accomplished more than half of the time at a signal level of -28 dB relative to the noise power in 2500 Hz bandwidth.”


Joe was launching his 4.9 version of WSJT, with the brand new Deep Search decoder.

Take a look at the last paragraph..

With the new JT65 decoder, full decodes of standard EME messages
(two callsigns, a grid locator, and an optional “OOO” signal report)
are now accomplished”
smiley

Anyone reading this will surely get the impression that the decoder is really decoding a full message, with grid locator and report, equivalent to at least 56 bits of data.

Nothing could be more wrong! In fact, when using the sked feature, less than 10 bits is needed to make the “QSO”…

There is nothing like a full decode taking place in Deep Search, not EVER!

So, one starts thinking, why would K1JT say what he said when he launched Deep Search?

– The obvious reason is that if he had told us the truth about his program, very few moonbouncers would have accepted the obvious shortcut!

So, instead he agressively told people who were doubtful that they were WRONG.

Another email from K1JT to the Moon-Net reflector:

Peter Sundberg wrote:

> From what I can understand reading Kens report your own callsign
> is never being decoded properly during a so called “deep search”.

This is not correct. Again, I refer you to the links given above, which
contain reasonably complete summaries of how the v4.9 JT65 decoder works.

By all means, let’s discuss here on Moon-Net anything that may be of
interest to the list at large. If you are interested in further
details, ask away! However, I really do not have the time to repeat in
separate emails things that are already well documented in earlier
messages and/or and posted on my web site.

With best wishes,
— 73, Joe, K1JT”

Oops.. I stepped on someones toes.. just by asking..

And again we are handed a false statement, because at no point did K1JT want to disclose the fact that if you click the “Sked” option, data to the amount of one character is what the Deep Search decoder is using to print a full EME message..

Again, I wonder why K1JT didn’t tell us this at that point??? smiley

– Could it be that the truth would not have served his purpose at that time?

– Could it be that he wanted people to start making contacts, to complete WAC, to complete WAS, to complete DXCC, and to be totally absorbed by success, before they received word that hardly anything was received via the radio waves?

I think so………. smiley

A CW man would never even imply that he copied both calls, a locator and a report after he received a single letter from the other station..!

A CW man is proud of his achievements, because they are for real.

CW is King!!

73 de Peter SM2CEW




CW – endless fun!

CW is King! Posted on %PM, November 04 2007 18:45:53

I have some interesting soundfiles if you are interested in listening to some weak signal CW.

One is a CW message generated by DJ5HG as a test-file, presenting quite a challenge to your ear and brain. I can assure you, the text message can be decoded by ear, but it is not easy.

The other one is a recording of WY6G, a 432 MHz single yagi EME expedition to Hawaii earlier this year. Al Katz, K2UYH put this station on the air, and I recorded a few sequences when Al was calling me.

http://www.sm2cew.com/wavefiles.html

Listening to the melodious CW signals from WY6G, returning back to earth after having bounced off the moon surface, we need no further explanation as to why we enjoy the CW mode so much!

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



The CONTEST format..

CW is King! Posted on %PM, November 04 2007 18:25:39

As always after the ARRL EME contest there is a discussion regarding the rules. In recent years, the discussion has mainly been about “Assisted” since this category was forced into the contest format a few years back by the digital crowd. At that time W5UN and K1JT was leading the way, as they spoke about the modern way of operating a contest.

This year “Assisted” is basically for newcomers (!!!), that are participating in the EME contest for the first time (K1JT’s own words).

IK1UWL made a comment to this and say’s:

Admitting self spotting entails more activity which benefits also the top guns who can operate unassisted. And self spotting is a great benefit also for small stations. I worked a lot of very small stations thanks to self spotting, which I would probably not have detected with S&P, same for them.

And the number of stations calling CQ was much bigger with respect to contests which do not allow self spotting, this increased very much the number of qsos possible and the number of participants who found satisfaction in operating this weekend.

So I hope that self spotting will return in full in future rules, without separation between assisted and unassisted; amusement and participation will benefit from this.

snip..

73 to all from Gio IK1UWL“

In my radio heart I feel sorry when I read this. smiley

Gio is saying that we should all be continously spotting our presence, i e TX period and frequency, during the entire contest. He is also saying that this will create amusement for all participants.

Let me tell you one thing Gio, NOT FOR ME! I would not be amused, and I will never operate a radio contest that way!

A radio contest is where the most skilled operator, possibly with the best setup, will send in the highest score.

Hunting QSO-partners on internet chatboard loggers and clusters has nothing to with entering a radio contest. Making contacts that way is not about skills, it’s about having access to as many non radio communcation tools as possible to score well.

So we ask ourselves;

– Where did Gio find all of his amusement and fun in this years EME Contest??

You’re right, with the digital crowd, of course..!

CW operators on the other hand, spend their time looking for stations, decoding their messages by ear. Talk about skills!

I made my QSO’s between 144.040 – 144.060 this time, and I found every station by spinning the dial, listening for signals.

Talk about amusement!! smiley

CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



No Deep Search decode? This will get you going..!

CW is King! Posted on %PM, October 28 2007 12:52:09

Some DX-expeditions are eager to help the guy at the other end work them!

When the Deep Search decoder set to “Normal” is not doing it (!!), here’s what the digital professionals suggest:

08/06 03:34 ok Frank but here nil now (HA6NQ)
08/06 03:35 sign will come over..same story each night arround this time sanyi (D44/DL8YHR)
08/06 03:41 going up but not enough (HA6NQ)
08/06 03:42 set sync to -2 freez qrg and mark agressive decoding (D44/DL8YHR)
08/06 03:43 put my call and my grid in the to radio box and add it (D44/DL8YHR)
08/06 03:43 will give you some extra db (D44/DL8YHR)
08/06 03:43 i did it Frank (HA6NQ)
08/06 03:44 ok…fb (D44/DL8YHR)

I my view, this is a ridiculous game, invented by K1JT.

– if you REALLY can’t see calls, then lower the decoder treshold to the point where the software will produce it anyway.. smiley

Is there any other explanation why the advice above is handed out?

It’s like saying to a CW operator:

– forget about what you are not hearing, imagine you heard it, and go for it!
smiley

No, we CW phantoms don’t buy that, we stick to the procedure and try again if we’re not successful.

There is NO SUCH THING as “Agressive decode” in our world!!!!

CW is King!!!! smiley

73 de Peter SM2CEW

Oh, by the way.. D44/DL8YHR’s reference to S/N dB’s.. is.. bollocks… but you all know by now that this is how K1JT marketed the feature.



Please lower your power, you’re too loud for a decode…!

CW is King! Posted on %PM, October 28 2007 12:06:29

Yes, there are times when you see things on chat pages that are unimaginable…

Recently there was a good tropo opening from the UK to the European contintent. Stations were working each other easily on CW and phone, as normal when signals are good.

But of course, some stations need to use the most difficult mode to communicate under such conditions, JT65..

Here is what went down on the ON4KST chatboard when G4IGO wanted to come on the band and works some guys on digital:

G4IGO Ken CQ JT65A tropo on 180 second to EU
G4IGO Ken SRI – jt65B no 65a
DG0OPK Michael nein… G4IGO BIG MS
DD0VF-1 Steffen@VHFQTH G4IGO -22 no decode
DG0OPK Michael KEN MS destroys JT65…
G4IGO Ken Station calling – Steffeen – so strong that jt65 will not decode. Will go down in power – please the same
DD0VF-1 Steffen@VHFQTH now decode Ken
G4IGO Ken RR Michael – i have station that is s9 and plus – but no decode.
OE5MPL Pete G4IGO 194100 7 -22 0.4 -121 3 * QRZ G4IGO IO80
DD0VF-1 Steffen@VHFQTH 194100 8 -12 0.3 -73 3 * QRZ G4IGO IO80
G4IGO Ken Guys – call me 50 and 100 low frequency please – i sort you out.
G4IGO Ken 50 and 100 hz..………
G4IGO Ken Peter – i call you next – you were too strong earlier

I love it!!!

you were too strong earlier ” smiley

Says it all really… why make it easy when it can be complicated the JT65 way..?? smiley

A CW operator spends his time communicating on the radio, digitalists spend their time talking to one another about how to get the program to decode what they want to see..

Yepp, CW is King!

73 de Peter SM2CEW



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