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Recent JARTS RTTY Contest

Paul Tait (NC8T) on December 20, 2010
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I worked the JARTS RTTY contest this past weekend and because part of the contest report was the AGE of the operator I thought the following stats might be of interst to fellow hams...

Keep in mind this was one of most beautiful weekends in Northeast Ohio and the XYL had other plans for me, I managed to work about 75 contacts.

Hers's the breakdown in age:
80's=1,
70's=8,
60's=30,
50's=19,
40's=13,
30's=4,
20's=none,
teens=none.

Most contacts were on 15m and 20m but some were on 40m and a couple on 80m...My dipole antenna favors Southern Europe dx and domestically W5-W6-W7 land...If anyone would like to comment please do so...

Paul*NC8T*

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Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by K0BG on December 20, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
Demographics can be informative, and a lot of fun too. In this case, it is sort of telltale. If you had kept track of this in past years, I'd bet you'd find an ebb, and then a flow which is a result of electronics making RTTY somewhat easier.

I have an Icom 7600 with built in RTTY, but I've never used the mode. I do remember, however, all of the equipment my brother used to use, and even the very unique smell! Should I say odor? Or reek!
 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by KF4HR on December 20, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
Those rtty demographics are probably pretty close to the overall amateur demographics now-a-days.

KF4HR
 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by WD9FUM on December 20, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
Alan, I remember operating a Teletype machine and the noise and odor that went along with the job =) 73 es Happy Holidays to All!
 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by N3DF on December 20, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
Let's face the truth: younger people today just don't know much about computers and aren't comfortable using a keyboard to communicate.
 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by K9MHZ on December 20, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
I think it means the exact opposite....they know plenty about computers, but don't know (or care) about communicating with them on radios.

 
Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by N3YEA on December 20, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
This is interesting - I ran my JARTS log and got results in the same proportions as you. I had a couple more Q's but here is how my log broke down:
00 = 5
16 = 1
20's = 2
30's = 17
40's = 72
50's = 123
60's = 148
70's = 39
80's = 4
99 = 10

Happy Holiday's all,
N3YEA
 
Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by WB4M on December 20, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
Since younger people have no interest in ham radio, I guess we should keep recruiting old people, haha.
 
Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by WA0NDN on December 20, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
Another interesting set of statistics would be how many were using computers versus how many were using real machines. I've got machines and find it difficult to carry on a QSO with those running computers that do not send CR/LF/LTRS after 72 characters. I'd love to get the machines back on the air but right now I'm working on getting my CW speed back up to 35 wpm without the aid of any computing devices.
 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by W5GNB on December 21, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
Well, on the POSITIVE side of these statistics, it looks as if in the area of about Thirty years from now there will be NO CONTESTERS around to Jam the ham bands like a bunch of CBer's shooting Skip.

Too bad I will probably not live long enough to see that wonderful time return to Ham Radio.

73's
Gary - W5GNB
 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by VE3VID on December 21, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
I get plenty of interest from teens in my family about ham radio. They love the tecky look of the gear. They like that it takes a special skill set to run the station. A couple computers running CAT MMTTY DXbase etc, and the attraction of random contacts with someone far away. I tell them its just like the internet, pictures, voice, files, other cool stuff like APRS/GPS and satelites.....and no ISP required.

The message has to come to them and be on their terms, otherwise we're just a bunch of boring old men....hihihi
 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by N4KC on December 21, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
I want to talk with those 10 guys in N3YEA's log who are 99 or older!

You know, it is that age-old problem of inadequate sample: you mention the hobby off-handedly to a couple of teens and get a yawn, so all teens must be totally unimpressed with amateur radio. One guy says, "I can do that with my 4G phone!" so nobody on the planet is going to be interested.

See my thoughts on the subject at:

http://www.eham.net/articles/24826 or at www.n4kc.com.

I really enjoyed RTTY with an old model 15 back in the '70s. I can still smell the oil and hear the clacking and clattering. Somewhere in a drawer, I still have paper tape (my first experience with "chads") that could be fed through a reader to print out over the air a portrait of Elvis Presley and other interesting pix (no, I don't have one of Miss July 1977).

I am not on RTTY or other digital modes now because in my day job or following my secondary passion of writing books, I am at a keyboard ten hours a day already. Last thing I want to do when I get a few minutes on the air is type on a keyboard! Give me a mic or key!

Oh, and for the "survey," I am 63 and started when I was 14.

73,

Don Keith N4KC
www.n4kc.com
www.donkeith.com
http://n4kc.blogspot.com

 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by VE3FMC on December 21, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
by N3DF
Let's face the truth: younger people today just don't know much about computers and aren't comfortable using a keyboard to communicate.




Wow that is an incorrect statement right there.

My daughters use computers every day to communicate with friends. They have been doing so for the past 12 years.

Chat programs, Facebook etc etc all from a computer.

What's to know? Buy a digital interface, hook it up, download free software and operate RTTY.

The main issue is this. A lot of newer hams have never operated RTTY. They have done PSK31 etc but not RTTY.

Tune around the HF bands and you do not hear much RTTY these days. Unlike years ago, when it was one of the original digital modes.

Lots of PSK though and some other digital modes, so that is what they operate.
 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by K9MHZ on December 21, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
>>>>VE3VID...The message has to come to them and be on their terms, otherwise we're just a bunch of boring old men....hihihi<<<<


Absolutely true. Kids are very image conscious, and the mere thought of being ridiculed for doing something geeky or hanging out with some old, weird guys, is terrifying. The only way to grow our ranks with youth is to make it interesting and fun for them on their terms.

When I was a kid, the local club was very effective in doing just that, and we had lots of kids in our entire school system get their licenses because those "old guys" were cool and made it fun and interesting.



 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by VE3LXL on December 22, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
by N3DF
Let's face the truth: younger people today just don't know much about computers and aren't comfortable using a keyboard to communicate.

by VE3FMC:
Wow that is an incorrect statement right there....
------

I believe that N3DF was making a joke. Don't let the absence of a smiley :-) mislead you, it was still a joke. I laughed at it, anyway.
 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by VE3LXL on December 22, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
While I don't think 75 hams is a large enough sample size to use to draw reliable conclusions, I think your result is probably pretty close to the mark. But I don't think this should necessarily be interpreted as "ham radio is dying". It may be that younger people, because they have careers and families to raise, don't show up on the air as much as older, retired folks do. Which means the 40 year casual ham of today may be much more active on the air in 20 years, and the 25 year old who today has no interest in radio might be an avid ham in 30 years.

It's like going to a retirement home and concluding that, since everyone living there is elderly, the place will be devoid of residents in 20 years, forgetting that new residents will move in as they age.
 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by K9MHZ on December 22, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
Your logic and example are sound, but they don't match the demographic stats that the ARRL routinely publishes.

Simply put....the average age of operators keeps getting older.

No, the sky isn't falling, but it is an issue worth dealing.

 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by AD6KA on December 25, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
VE3LXL:
"I believe that N3DF was making a joke. Don't let the absence of a smiley :-) mislead you, it was still a joke. I laughed at it, anyway."

I laughed too, for the same reason,
the poster was being facetious.

 
Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by K6XR on December 25, 2010 Mail this to a friend!
With Android and Iphone, social networks, that require no work, studying, putting antennas up in the air, most young folks are not turned on by ham radio. Most of the young folks tell me that I am using "old technology". They say " I can do the same thing without all that stuff". Times and technology are changing.
 
RE: Recent JARTS RTTY Contest  
by K9MHZ on January 1, 2011 Mail this to a friend!
That's part of the challenge.....differentiating between ham radio as being just another communications option versus learning and using radio technologies. After all....why go to the trouble and expense of getting a D-STAR radio, when you can just use Skype for free, or why use PSK-31 when you can send an email much more quickly and efficiently?

We really do have to show the uniqueness of radio and everything that goes along with it. If we try to compete head-to-head with cell phones or the internet as just another communications medium, we'll lose that one big time.

 
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