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Re: Internet/Satelite link?

On Mon, 22 Jun 1998, Steve Dimse K4HG wrote:

> >You bet!  The Internet is NOT ham radio!!!
> >
> No, the internet is not ham radio. The internet grows every minute, while 
> ham radio continues to shrink. The internet is a shining star of 
> innovation, ham radio wallows in 20 year old technology. The internet is 
> full of bright teenagers, and ham radio is crammed with overweight 
> 50-somethings.

Well, Ham radio has a few bright teenagers, and the internet is also
crowded with 50 somethings. The original purpose of the internet was
to provide routing in case of emergency, and to preserve data, and
protect it from disaster, both natural and man made. The Inet exists
as basically a backup system for computer networking in case of 
emergency, and being such, was routed with multiple routing options
so it could route to/from and around disaster sites. The Inet routing
is basically a mess, and was never supposed to do the job it's doing.

The ISP is supposed to be functioning as a caching agent for the network.
In other words, your ISP should be running in a manner much like the old
style bbs boards did. Of course, for you, that's ancient technology. But,
it is intrinsic to the design. 

As it stands right now, the Inet is basically acting as a leech,
asking for services and providing zero in return. The only people who 
are paying are the customer, and the advertisers. Someone should tell
these ISPS that there isn't any such thing as a free lunch. By the time
Inet II rolls around they'll believe it. 

> Continued communications technology is fast making ham radio irrelevant. 
> This applies to space comms as well. By the time ISS is occupied, Iridium 
> will be active. Any time an astronaut wants to talk to their family, they 
> won't fight the QRM on 2 meters, they'll just pick up the phone and dial. 
> Whether they pick up a two meter radio to talk to a school, or set up a 
> conference call, is up to us. If ham radio is to survive, we need to 
> embrace outside technology where it is a better answer, rather than 
> trying to cram our square peg into every round hole we find. 

The great thing about radio, it operates as a stand alone function for
each station. Gee, never seen a sat go down, like not recently, when
all the pagers and cell phones went out. Wouldn't it be great if every
PD, FD, EMT were trunked ? That way, when their repeater goes down, noone
will be able to talk. You put way too much faith into someone elses RF
equipment. Would you be absolutely willing to stake your life on someone
elses satellite ? I sure wouldn't. So, all I want you to do is give me one
instance where a radio wouldn't work as well as a cell phone, and
sometimes better. Not that radios have any more range. Not like repeaters
are a dime a dozen. Not like you can choose the repeater, freq, etc. 
Not like you can fix it if something goes wrong. 

> We must concentrate on that which we can do best, and use it to generate 
> excitment among the youth. SAREX is one of the best examples of this, and 
> an internet system would be a great addition. 

Am I in the right group ? Anyone here ever hear of a nos gateway ? We are
on internet. Over 100 nodes worldwide. Accesible by radio, or telnet. What
I cannot fathom is why adults need pictures of Mickey Mouse doing the
nasty when all that's really needed is text. Anything else is a waste of
radio spectrum. And it's not just antiquated technology. Bandwidth and
regulations have alot to do with this. As a matter of fact, most of the
problem stems from manufacturers not being able to manufacture radios that
work well with 9600 baud and up packet. Not the fault of the TNC, or HAM. 
You can access up to 56Kb, but the equipment for alot of this is still on
the drawing board. Of course, cutting edge spread spectrum digital
technology is well beneath you. For more info on this, and if you can
stoop that low, try www.tapr.org.  

Any ham system that make 
> astronauts and space more accessible to young people (who are on the 
> internet) will be a benefit to ham radio. Activities like this may be our 
> only chance.

OK, lets go. Firstly, have you any idea what radio sounds like in space ? 
How many freqs are available for cell phones, and what about horizon to
horizon ? For an orbiting platform, this could pose a unique problem, even
with cell phones. A duplex radio on a reserved commercial frequency would
be a better option, kind of like ship to shore, where the bulk of the
maintenance could be performed on the ground. Of course, satellites in
geosynchronous orbit wouldn't be visible 100% of the time, unless they
were at an elevation that would allow for LOS at all times. Most
satellites work as mixers, and would therefore downlink to a ground
station somewhere to complete a circuit. The only really feasible radio
transmissions into space are shortwave, and they are dubious at best, due
to the nature of an orbital platform. Also, when working with satellites, 
you have to consider squint angle. And this poses another problem,
especially for data transmissions. Also, consider the work schedule of a
crew in space. Are they going to have alot of time to play Inet ? 

I could go on, but am beginning to get pedantic. 

> Please think about this before you start shouting "It isn't ham radio"...
> Steve K4HG

Please think before you shout, it should be Inet. 

Curtis - kd4zkw