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Author Topic: Morse code question  (Read 2585 times)
KE6EE
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Posts: 1840




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« Reply #15 on: October 28, 2017, 01:20:45 PM »

There might be some out there who are retired, working part time, had their hours cut back or unemployed who could spend 8 hours a day.  Perhaps even kids having off for summer vacation.  

The problem would be even if someone could find that much time in a day, I could imagine it would be difficult to get that self motivated to train 8 hours a day unless they were in some kind of classroom setting with others.

As I've tried many times to point out in this forum, I do not think that learning Morse Code is at all difficult. It certainly does not take 8 hours a day of work for several weeks. That's fine for the military which often does things in inefficient but reliably effective ways.

The secret is something which is no doubt unobtanium these days: the ability to spend time with a clear head focusing on
a simple task of learning rhythmic patterns. An hour a day for a week or two would be plenty to learn alphabet and numbers.

People these days, young or old, are always surrounded by distracting electronic devices: phones, TVs, stereos, e-readers, etc. There was a time, a generation ago, when the noise of commercial enterprise was not always rudely bursting into everyone's consciousness.

In addition, learning was something one simply did, with the help of a teacher or without. There wasn't a proliferation of "perfect," "fast" methods which actually interfere with the learning process because they make one more self-critical about
learning rather than simply doing the learning.

Deep learning does not go away. I did absolutely nothing with Morse Code for 45 years. When I decided to take it up again, I could do 10 or more wpm and send easily with a straight key.

Deep learning is slow, but slow learning is much faster than repeated attempts at "fast" learning which do not work.



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ZL1BBW
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« Reply #16 on: October 28, 2017, 05:05:03 PM »

I think at Radio College, they were for an hour a day, but that was not all headphones on and away you go, there would be bits of procedure in there.

They generally had about 4 terms to get to 20 wpm s/r with no more than 4 errors in 3 minutes, 16 wpm code for 90 secs? and numbers at about 12 or 14.

A huge emphasis was on the ability to copy and send correctly.

I do not recall any named methods being bandied about, other than this is how I do, and this right.
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ex MN Radio Officer, Portishead Radio GKA, BT Radio Amateur Morse Tester.  Licensed as G3YCP ZL1DAB, now taken over my father (sk) call as ZL1BBW.
VK5EEE
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« Reply #17 on: October 28, 2017, 08:21:07 PM »

The original question was about the military way.  That is totally different from ham radio.  The two should never be compared or connected in any which, way or form.
Why not? What is MARS all about then? And message handling nets? There are some things that connect the two and that is good. Nothing is "totally" different. Let's not talk about absolutes black and white, there are many colours in between.
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Long Live Real Human CW and wishing you many happy CW QSO - 77 - CW Forever

Support CW and join CW clubs. QTT: FIST#1124, HSC#1437, UFT#728, RCWC#982, SKCC#15007, CWOPS#1714, 30CW#1,
VK5EEE
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« Reply #18 on: October 28, 2017, 08:23:47 PM »

KE6EE basically says all that anyone ever needs to know about learning CW - 100% best advice. There are books you can read that are very helpful if you wish, such as "Zen and the Art of Radiotelegraphy" by Carlo, IK0YGJ: http://www.qsl.net/ik0ygj/enu/ it's QSL-ware.
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Long Live Real Human CW and wishing you many happy CW QSO - 77 - CW Forever

Support CW and join CW clubs. QTT: FIST#1124, HSC#1437, UFT#728, RCWC#982, SKCC#15007, CWOPS#1714, 30CW#1,
K8AXW
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« Reply #19 on: October 28, 2017, 09:10:26 PM »

EEE:  Sorry for your poor reading comprehension.  The original question was how  the military taught code.

That sure as hell was DIFFERENT than ANY civilian or hobbyist METHOD of learning code!

For that matter, using your comparisons, code is code.....regardless of how it's used. That, you understand as well as I.

The LEARNING method is/was what is different.  Now do you understand?
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VK5EEE
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« Reply #20 on: October 28, 2017, 09:44:41 PM »

Now do you understand?
Possibly, hopefully, potentially. "Yes, no, maybe, can you repeat the question?" - Malcolm in the Middle
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Long Live Real Human CW and wishing you many happy CW QSO - 77 - CW Forever

Support CW and join CW clubs. QTT: FIST#1124, HSC#1437, UFT#728, RCWC#982, SKCC#15007, CWOPS#1714, 30CW#1,
KE6EE
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« Reply #21 on: October 29, 2017, 10:01:26 AM »

The LEARNING method is/was what is different.  Now do you understand?

As I read it the original question asked about "military method" vs "civilian method."

Many of the answering posts have to do with comparing the two "methods."

And they have to do with the critical aspects of the learning, "military" or "civilian," chief aspects being: learning takes time;
learning requires focus; trying to learn fast can mean superficial learning which does not last; going slow in order to go fast; learning is not difficult if the preceding aspects are not ignored.
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K8AXW
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« Reply #22 on: October 29, 2017, 10:27:02 AM »

I never realized something so simple can become so complicated!

The "military way" uses force feed, i.e, long hours of training.  This is because the end result demands accuracy and long hours of use.  It doesn't take long to learn Morse code in itself, but to learn it for a hobby and learning it when lives depend on it are two totally different things!

I'll be the first to say that 8 hours a day, 5 1/2 days a week is a bitch!  Learning Morse code for a hobby is to be somewhat enjoyable and after learning it, if you fluff a contact, both parties go on their way to the next QSO.

This is why I say the "Military way" and the ham radio hobby way of learning code should never be compared.  If it takes you 6 months to get to 13wpm, so what? 

With ham radio the name of the game is to have fun.

With the military, radio operators and intercept operators literally hold many lives in they're hands by the accuracy of their work.  Hellova difference!
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KE6EE
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Posts: 1840




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« Reply #23 on: October 29, 2017, 05:35:23 PM »

With ham radio the name of the game is to have fun.

With the military, radio operators and intercept operators literally hold many lives in they're hands by the accuracy of their work.  Hellova difference!

I couldn't agree more about the importance of fun. Also learning theory fully supports the notion that enjoyment is critical to
learning.

On the other hand, despite the element of enforced seriousness, my guess is that experienced, effective military code teachers used fun and humor as a part of the learning.

I also think that many hobbyists who want to learn code make it into an unnecessary ordeal by overthinking it, setting unreasonable goals and going about it in a self-defeating way.

Back in the day when there were relatively easy levels of code mastery required for licenses, hams simply used the code and
allowed themselves to progress naturally as a part of fiddling with radios.

I think really exploring the possible differences in learning methods exposes the common threads in what only seem to be very different
approaches.
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AA4PB
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« Reply #24 on: October 29, 2017, 06:42:15 PM »

For me there was one big difference between military training and ham radio. In the military it was all 5-letter code groups and it was all typed on a mill (typewriter with only capital letters). The code groups provided a constant rhythm (5 letters and a rest) that was easier to keep pace with and you never got distracted by thinking about what was being said because it meant nothing to the operator. I got a top speed of 25WPM in school. Two weeks later I just barely passed the 13WPM General test at the FCC office. Why? I was copying conversation that had varying lengths of words, I was distracted by reading what I was writing down, and I was having to write it down with pen and paper rather than using a mill.
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Bob  AA4PB
Garrisonville, VA
K8AXW
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Posts: 6306




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« Reply #25 on: October 29, 2017, 06:59:44 PM »

PB:  You're correct.  Entirely.  I had the same problem, only not so bad because i was a ham during my military hitch.  But, the same problem, never-the-less.

However, the original question was how the military taught code.  This is what I have been trying to respond to.  I also pointed out that there had to be a difference between military learning and hobbyist learning.

I also tried to point out that learning code for our hobby should be fun.  The military way sure as hell wasn't fun!

There are many different thing between military and civilian and you've pointed out another. BTW, you mentioned the "mill."  Would you believe the British used a pencil, for both communications as well as intercept? 
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W7ASA
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« Reply #26 on: October 29, 2017, 07:48:21 PM »

Well - Code 8 hours per day and 5 1/2 days per week and extra duty for poor performance had it's ..... shall we call them "effects" on the students.  I saw this on YOUTUBE and it's funny, because it was often true.

https://youtu.be/FlYMXJNE8u0?t=36s
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KE6EE
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« Reply #27 on: October 29, 2017, 10:02:40 PM »

Well - Code 8 hours per day ... had it's ... "effects" on the students.  I saw this on YOUTUBE...

Seems to me it's more like "the floggings will continue until morale improves."
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VK5EEE
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« Reply #28 on: October 29, 2017, 10:09:10 PM »

Ray that video mentions the ASA -- did you produce it  Grin
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Long Live Real Human CW and wishing you many happy CW QSO - 77 - CW Forever

Support CW and join CW clubs. QTT: FIST#1124, HSC#1437, UFT#728, RCWC#982, SKCC#15007, CWOPS#1714, 30CW#1,
W7ASA
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« Reply #29 on: October 30, 2017, 05:58:21 PM »

Hi Lou,

These videos were made by a former Army Security Agency operator , which also happens to be my old outfit, too. There are a few of us on here.

73 де Ray. ...- .-
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