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Author Topic: Slowest CW Trainers  (Read 2399 times)
K6OIU
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« on: November 01, 2010, 11:00:37 PM »

I am helping a quadriplegic who, for the last 10 years, has communicated nothing but yes, no, maybe with his thumbs.  I am teaching him Morse code.  I'd like to find a trainer program that can slow down the dit to 1 sec, the dah to 3 seconds, and the character breaks and word breaks similarly.  Do you know of any program that can do that for us?

Thanks a lot for your help.

Pat
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PA2EFR
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« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2010, 04:46:27 AM »

Wonderful idea!
But can't he  try to learn it in a faster speed with an electronic keyer? Straight key seems impossible to me.
My own memory keyer can be adjusted for very slow speeds.
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WX7G
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« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2010, 05:51:12 AM »

Wow that is incredibly slow. The preferred method is to teach code with the letters sent at 20 WPM and the spacing set to 5 WPM. Starting with slow letters is a bad way to start out.

In this case though I think your pupil might only have the ability to send very slowly. Is that right? That will make for painfully slow communication but will be better than the present method. See the book "The Count of Monte Cristo" for a method whereby a paralyzed man was able to communicate amazingly well with a similar disability.

Perhaps a method where the blinking of the eyes will key morse code and a code reader converts this to text would be a good method. The person on the receiving end does not need to know morse code. The pupil needs to know how to send code but needs no skill in copying it. He can view the code reader output.
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KC9HOZ
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« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2010, 10:17:46 AM »

I know there has been discussion in the past (which I didn't really follow  Roll Eyes ) on using a "sip-n-puff" controller with a keyer.  Perhaps that would be an option here?

Scott
kc9hoz
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K6OIU
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« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2010, 12:11:36 PM »

A little more explanation of our situation.  When I met Patrick in August, I heard that the system has essentially given up on him as hopeless.  Although his mom says he was and is a genius, the professionals appear to have found no physical movement sufficient to develop.  My husband and I  have tried all sorts of switches to see what Pat could reliably activate with his thumb.  Push buttons (no matter how big or how soft the push) require too much dexterity and strength.  His eyes blink too much involuntarily.  What we finally have is a reed switch attached to his thumb and a ring with a magnet on his finger.   Even this was too hard until my husband added a relay so his rest position of thumb on finger is silence rather than signal.  He can do his but it takes a while to raise his thumb and it seems impossible to make a really short signal.  So it is what it is.   

Besides giving him code he is able to model, another reason I hesitate to use a faster speed is because, needless to say, he is in a persistent battle with despair and I don’t want him worryng that he has to do 5 wpm orfaster in order to for this to be meaningful.  Already, just to have him doing “Hello” and “Hi” at his pace, at various times I have seen Pat and his mom and friend in tears of joy. It is good just to have us all appreciating what he can do.

His field of vision is small so he can’t really use a cheat sheet to study unless the sheet is moved in front of him.  So what I’d like to do now is to create a training CD to drill all the letters and then words at his pace.

Thanks for the reference to "The Count of Monte Cristo”.  I will look into it.  There are other cases of amazing accomplishment like doing code with eye blinks and the "sip-n-puff" , but these are beyond Pat’s capabilites.

Using Morse code with a computer is coming for us, but for now,  just he needs to be able to learn the code in those long hours when he’s by himself in bed.

Thanks a lot for all your replies.  I’m open to any other ideas you may think of.

Pat
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VA7CPC
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« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2010, 09:14:34 PM »

What a situation to be trapped in!  [His situation, not yours]

There's an extensive list of CW programs here:

http://www.ac6v.com/morseprograms.htm

I've just checked a few that I have on my computer, and they don't permit speeds less than 5 wpm. 

PARIS, send with one-second dits (and one second between dits), runs to

P  . . . 12   seconds
A . . .   6   
R . . .   8
I . . .    4
S . . .   6
[sp] . . 4    [inter-letter spaces]
. .     .________

           50 seconds

so you're talking about 1 wpm.

I have one idea, possibly completely off-the-wall.  Some Morse "practice tapes" have been done with MIDI (musical-instrument digital interface) coding.  It might be possible to find a MIDI player that lets you change the _underlying tempo_ at which it plays.

And Googling "morse code MIDI" came up with some hits, and one of them might do what you want:

http://www.robertecker.com/hp/research/morse-generator.php

That software can go up to _several seconds_ per dit.  It's clumsy to set up, but I just tested it -- it sends _r  e  a  l  l  y     s  l  o  w  _.

                 Charles

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K6OIU
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« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2010, 12:16:35 AM »

I have looked at the programs listed by CW and other sites but so far the only program I've found that allows you to really slow down is Morse Cat - and even then it's just to just to 2 wpm and just for character and character groups, not for words.  Your idea of slowing the tempo of Morse midi's is a fabulous idea.  Now that you mention it, I vaguely recall the notion of midi's being used for Morse code but would have never thought them in this context.  What a wonderful idea.  Thank you so much, Charles.

Pat

P.S.  It is so sad for my friend.  But one day he'll have mastered the letters and we'll have devised a better switch (now my husband's looking into a tilt switch with an unbounce circuit so all he has to do is more his thumb a little) - and then, maybe one day he'll be a Handiham.  &;-)
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LB3KB
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« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2010, 05:39:18 AM »

It is also possible to time-stretch audio files without altering the pitch.  Audio files may be easier to come by and you can easily create your own.

The speed you're after is 1.2 WPM (6 CPM).

73
LB3KB Sigurd
http://justlearnmorsecode.com
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K6OIU
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« Reply #8 on: November 03, 2010, 10:55:41 AM »

Thanks a lot, Sigurd.  I found a whole list of programs to slow down audio files here: http://www.seventhstring.com/resources/transcription.html and, of course, there are a ton of CW audio files available. 

Thank you!

Pat
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K4XZ
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« Reply #9 on: November 03, 2010, 03:27:18 PM »

I don't if this will help but you may get some Information.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UtYswqOEMZE
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K6OIU
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« Reply #10 on: November 03, 2010, 04:55:21 PM »

I really appreciate your input. K4XZ.  I wish!  The Hands Free Air Key looks like it would be a godsend for many disabled people.  But, unfortunately, my friend is on a ventilator and also has no control of his tongue. 

Thank you all the same!

Pat
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AE6ZW
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« Reply #11 on: November 04, 2010, 11:28:26 PM »

I made CW training program runs in DOS long time ago, it is written with quick basic 4.5
you can down load from   http://ae6zw.no-ip.info   look for CW DOS program
it has capability to go slow, runs well in DOS BOX in modern computer 
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KF5AFN
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« Reply #12 on: November 09, 2010, 04:50:35 PM »

It may sound like Sci-fi, but there is a company called PLX Devices that sells a brainwave headband ($99) that reads brainwaves and converts them to digital signals and can interface with an I-Phone.
"The company reports that some apps already in development include games in which objects are controlled by the wearer’s mind and another that allows the wearer to control the lights in their home or select music based on their mood"

 http://thefutureofthings.com/pod/10340/xwave-is-the-first-brainwave-interface.html

« Last Edit: November 09, 2010, 05:26:44 PM by Chris Clardy » Logged
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