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RE: All our eggs in one basket...

> Well guys,
> I know this is going to sound narrow minded, but hey why not!
> This latest problem with nobody knowing how to make a good 
> linear transponder is a 
> perfect example actually...
> Let's think about what happens if a person does something, 
> then decides to keep it 
> to himself, or a company keeps it to themselves... Well 
> obviously you'll never get 
> anybody to have a look and say "well this could be improved, 
> and so could that" 
> and thus the design gets bigger and better, all at the cost 
> of open-hardware 
> schematics and design.

I can imagine that there are some perfectly good reasons to limit the amount
of changes in each new satellite... It's called risk, satellites are
expensive and launch opportunities aren't as common as we'd like.  Going
with something proves and preventing too many cooks from spoiling the broth
does have a lot of merit when you look at a major project like P3D, but we
do need to move on at the same time...

However, who says we need to put the transponder up in space to try it out?
Why not setup more terrestrial translators, or hang a few from balloons?
That way, the ideas can be tested on the ground with a lot lower risk, and
the good ideas can then fly, and the whole process is documented for future
generations of AMSAT people to build on.  Hopefully we'll wind up with a lot
more valid designs that are at a stage of development where it's not too
risky to fly them on a live satellite.  That can only enhance our satellite
capabilities over time.

> This is probably not a good example, but at the moment there 
> are a heap of Open-
> Hardware type computers like the LART, hell, even COMPAQ has 
> decided to build 
> and open-hardware a StrongARM based computer...

As I said, why not encourage more terrestrial experimentation.  At least
here in VK, we have band segments which are set aside in the band plan as
"Linear translator/Experimental" (which are rather quiet, or maybe have the
odd FM operator occupying them until someone makes use of them)  I presume
there's similar band segments set aside in other countries.  Why not make
use of these band segments to test new satellite ideas on the ground, and
get them space ready?  

> If you're scared about your designs being taken, distribute 
> with a licensing 
> agreement.

Which would then offer some legal protection.
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