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Author Topic: REAL CW DXer gives up on FT8  (Read 8991 times)
VA3VF
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Posts: 1094




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« Reply #60 on: December 15, 2017, 07:03:38 AM »

Well, FT8 is just the digimode version of CW's 5NN TU 73
 Grin Grin

What? Are you saying there is no skill in sending 5NN TU 73? Roll Eyes

Oh, I see. The skill is in sending it to the right station, rather then simply clicking on a DX spot. Wink
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OZ8AGB
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Posts: 353




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« Reply #61 on: December 15, 2017, 07:04:32 AM »

Not if I use a macro key on my PC.
 Grin Grin
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VA3VF
Member

Posts: 1094




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« Reply #62 on: December 15, 2017, 07:07:25 AM »

Not if I use a macro key on my PC.
 Grin Grin

Macros and DX clusters...'real' ham tools. Grin

To the Honor Roll and beyond! Lips sealed
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SV5DKL
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Posts: 25




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« Reply #63 on: December 21, 2017, 04:13:46 AM »

As promised, I will try to finish the instructional "How-To" video, on how to set up a fully unattended, fully automatic FT8 Robot, using WSJT-X Software,
within the following days, hopefully before Xmas!

It will be publicly available through YouTube platform. I will post here the link, after it goes Live.

73 & best of Season's Greetings!

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SV5DKL
Member

Posts: 25




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« Reply #64 on: December 24, 2017, 05:41:09 AM »

Merry Christmas everybody!

Best wishes for you and your families.

https://youtu.be/wdeISi7Z7bY

Vy 73 from the island of Rhodes in Dodecanese, Greece.

Stathis, SV5DKL

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VA3VF
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Posts: 1094




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« Reply #65 on: December 24, 2017, 08:49:19 AM »

Merry Christmas everybody!

Best wishes for you and your families.

https://youtu.be/wdeISi7Z7bY

Vy 73 from the island of Rhodes in Dodecanese, Greece.

Stathis, SV5DKL

Great video!

Automated FT8 is very boring indeed, totally unworthy of being called a hobby.

I prefer human controlled FT8 operations.
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SV5DKL
Member

Posts: 25




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« Reply #66 on: December 25, 2017, 12:09:23 AM »

VA3VF: Season's Greetings!

Totally agree with you.
I prefer ANY mode where the operator is a necessary accessory.

In FT8, how would you know it's not a machine answering you from the other side?
Would you be happy to be the only human in a QSO?

73 es HNY

Stathis, SV5DKL
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HB9FXW
Member

Posts: 58




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« Reply #67 on: December 25, 2017, 03:06:15 AM »

Automating CW qsos isn't difficult at all and I'm sure there already are "bots" on the air. I can't find it anymore, but there used to be a website about an italian robot on 10m IIRC.
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Seiuchy, free morse QSO quiz and simulator
VA3VF
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Posts: 1094




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« Reply #68 on: December 25, 2017, 08:04:58 AM »

VA3VF: Season's Greetings!

Totally agree with you.
I prefer ANY mode where the operator is a necessary accessory.

In FT8, how would you know it's not a machine answering you from the other side?
Would you be happy to be the only human in a QSO?

73 es HNY

Stathis, SV5DKL

Hi Stathis,

I would not know whether I'm 'talking' to a machine or not. It's out of my control. All I know is that *I* was controlling my station.

I won't automate my station!

There are already so many other factors out of my control regarding the other station. Some fair, others not so much. Things such as: transceiver quality, antenna, location, and power. Illegal power is bad too. Location, as in remote receiver, is even worse.

Should I abandon the hobby because of them? No, not yet.

The know-how to automate a ham radio station has been available for some time. It may already have been in use, in other modes, for a long time, quietly.

If, and when, automated operations become widespread and obvious, I may reconsider.

For now, I'm just happy that the JT modes allow my very modest station to work entities that, while not necessarily rare, were near impossible for me.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your Family.

73 de Vince, VA3VF

P.S. I knowingly play chess against a computer from time to time. Playing against the computer still forces me to improve my game. Grin
« Last Edit: December 25, 2017, 08:10:27 AM by VA3VF » Logged
K0UA
Member

Posts: 1583




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« Reply #69 on: December 25, 2017, 09:06:24 AM »

VA3VF: Season's Greetings!

Totally agree with you.
I prefer ANY mode where the operator is a necessary accessory.

In FT8, how would you know it's not a machine answering you from the other side?
Would you be happy to be the only human in a QSO?

73 es HNY

Stathis, SV5DKL

Hi Stathis,

I would not know whether I'm 'talking' to a machine or not. It's out of my control. All I know is that *I* was controlling my station.

I won't automate my station!

There are already so many other factors out of my control regarding the other station. Some fair, others not so much. Things such as: transceiver quality, antenna, location, and power. Illegal power is bad too. Location, as in remote receiver, is even worse.

Should I abandon the hobby because of them? No, not yet.

The know-how to automate a ham radio station has been available for some time. It may already have been in use, in other modes, for a long time, quietly.

If, and when, automated operations become widespread and obvious, I may reconsider.

For now, I'm just happy that the JT modes allow my very modest station to work entities that, while not necessarily rare, were near impossible for me.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your Family.

73 de Vince, VA3VF

P.S. I knowingly play chess against a computer from time to time. Playing against the computer still forces me to improve my game. Grin

VERY well stated Vince.
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YT9TP
Member

Posts: 23




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« Reply #70 on: December 25, 2017, 12:09:02 PM »

For now, I'm just happy that the JT modes allow my very modest station to work entities that, while not necessarily rare, were near impossible for me.

Once it was needed personal skill, knowledge, patience, dedication and quite hard work to achieve some contacts. Now all you have to do is turn on computer and press a button and wait it to do all the work.

It's almost as counting EchoLink contacts as real QSO's.
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VA3VF
Member

Posts: 1094




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« Reply #71 on: December 25, 2017, 12:43:55 PM »

For now, I'm just happy that the JT modes allow my very modest station to work entities that, while not necessarily rare, were near impossible for me.

Once it was needed personal skill, knowledge, patience, dedication and quite hard work to achieve some contacts. Now all you have to do is turn on computer and press a button and wait it to do all the work.


Remember...only 2-2.5 kHz per band is used for FT8. Can't you go somewhere else for your hamming? Huh

Live and let live! Roll Eyes
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SV5DKL
Member

Posts: 25




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« Reply #72 on: December 25, 2017, 01:03:17 PM »

Vince, best wishes for the New Year to you, too!

I understand that FT8 is the joy of "small pistol" stations, I really can feel that as I have also been one in the beginning.
But, that's another thing than what I'm pointing out with this tutorial.

Everyone has the right to enjoy DX, with whatever means, but when it comes to number counts, awards, DXCC totals, etc.,
there just has to be a distinction between semi- and/or full-auto PC2PC digital modes, and those that require even the least human intervention and skill.
What we are facing now is a bucket where every digital mode QSO goes in and counts the same as all.

Let's try not to fool ourselves. FT8, in particular, has been designed to be a full-auto PC2PC QSO production machine. Its error correction is just fine (kudos mr. Taylor!). Maybe lack of specific QSO protocol, as well as conformance to legislation, has forced the author to insert this double interlocking, so as not to lead to havoc in the bands (or maybe, he was just asked to set it!).
It's simple. You run FT8, you are automatically automated :-)
In the introduction of my video, is pointed out exactly what bothers me about FT8. After all, since you've seen how easy it was to overcome the interlocking and set it up as an unattended QSO robot, you may understand that the hard part authoring the software was to implement the interlock, not to perform the full-auto function.

In any case, it is a matter of personal taste. I am OK with anyone that will set up the same system, and work stations 24/7, if that satisfies him.
I am also OK with those feeling great chasing new bandslots with it (and not CQing), as yes, it is much easier.
As I have stated in a QRZ.com forum, I find no real satisfaction in this and I consider it as no big achievement and purposeless. But, that's just MHO.

I read somewhere today about potential CW AI robotic operations ... not gonna happen, except you just want a typical "5NN TU" for your log. Even in that case, semi-automatic keyers and bugs remaining in action will make this AI useless. Also, operators that like to zero-gap between characters, will do the same. And on top, CW is music, another joyful means to communicate and discuss with someone at the other side of the world, for hours, about almost anything. Modern digital modes will never have the chance to give this joy and satisfaction to any operator. Any kind of station automation won't.

Happy Holidays for you and yours.

73
Stathis, SV5DKL

P.S.: a) Computers don't know (and never will) when and how to bluff in chess!
       b) EchoLink is so much harder ...
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VA3VF
Member

Posts: 1094




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« Reply #73 on: December 25, 2017, 01:51:42 PM »

Vince, best wishes for the New Year to you, too!

I understand that FT8 is the joy of "small pistol" stations, I really can feel that as I have also been one in the beginning.
But, that's another thing than what I'm pointing out with this tutorial.

Everyone has the right to enjoy DX, with whatever means, but when it comes to number counts, awards, DXCC totals, etc.,
there just has to be a distinction between semi- and/or full-auto PC2PC digital modes, and those that require even the least human intervention and skill.
What we are facing now is a bucket where every digital mode QSO goes in and counts the same as all.

Let's try not to fool ourselves. FT8, in particular, has been designed to be a full-auto PC2PC QSO production machine. Its error correction is just fine (kudos mr. Taylor!). Maybe lack of specific QSO protocol, as well as conformance to legislation, has forced the author to insert this double interlocking, so as not to lead to havoc in the bands (or maybe, he was just asked to set it!).
It's simple. You run FT8, you are automatically automated :-)
In the introduction of my video, is pointed out exactly what bothers me about FT8. After all, since you've seen how easy it was to overcome the interlocking and set it up as an unattended QSO robot, you may understand that the hard part authoring the software was to implement the interlock, not to perform the full-auto function.

In any case, it is a matter of personal taste. I am OK with anyone that will set up the same system, and work stations 24/7, if that satisfies him.
I am also OK with those feeling great chasing new bandslots with it (and not CQing), as yes, it is much easier.
As I have stated in a QRZ.com forum, I find no real satisfaction in this and I consider it as no big achievement and purposeless. But, that's just MHO.

I read somewhere today about potential CW AI robotic operations ... not gonna happen, except you just want a typical "5NN TU" for your log. Even in that case, semi-automatic keyers and bugs remaining in action will make this AI useless. Also, operators that like to zero-gap between characters, will do the same. And on top, CW is music, another joyful means to communicate and discuss with someone at the other side of the world, for hours, about almost anything. Modern digital modes will never have the chance to give this joy and satisfaction to any operator. Any kind of station automation won't.

Happy Holidays for you and yours.

73
Stathis, SV5DKL

P.S.: a) Computers don't know (and never will) when and how to bluff in chess!
       b) EchoLink is so much harder ...


Hi again Stathis,

I see where you are coming from, but as I said in my previous message, my station is not automated. I still have to switch it on, look for a band where propagation is conducive to a contact, enable TX, find my way around the competition for the DX, and log it. One still needs to build a functional station, albeit one less complex and/or powerful.

While I'm not looking forward to contacting a bot, knowingly at least, all I care at this point is whether the station is where he/she claims to be.

It's all legal for the moment. If that changes, like ROS for our US friends, then it's a different story. Automation, or lack thereof, as long as allowed by the regulators, is a philosophical not a regulatory issue.

I use CW software decoder as well (FLDIGI). My hearing is not what it once was. My experience shows that a CW decoder only helps those that know code already, but due to other issues need the extra help to stay with the mode. But even in this case, a decoder is only effective on preset contacts, like in a contest. Trying to chew the rag using a CW decoder only is very painful for both parties involved.

Please don't take any of the following personally. As far as the hobby goes, how is 2kHz worth of FT8 worse than SSB 'operators' talking nonsense. Occupying the same bandwidth, if not more, if using Hi-Fi. Let's not even mention the other stupidities we see on the bands every day.

There are modes that I won't touch. I simply spin the dial to the next available segment/frequency, and enjoy my hamradio privileges the best way I can.

As for the awards' value. It's a personal thing. I don't have a problem using FT8 confirmations to complete them. But would sure have a problem if using remote receivers, illegal power, adulterate 17 meters QSL cards that become 160 meters, and the list goes on and on. Hamradio may be the hobby of kings, but it sure is not the hobby of angels.

As for computers not being able to bluff, I see that as a plus.  Grin Grin Grin

As for Echolink, eQSL has an award for it now. I don't know if Echolink is a mode, but I did try it, and that was about it. When it comes to ragchewing, I much prefer an unlimited cell phone plan.  Grin

73 de Vince, VA3VF
    

 

« Last Edit: December 25, 2017, 01:54:41 PM by VA3VF » Logged
SV5DKL
Member

Posts: 25




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« Reply #74 on: December 25, 2017, 10:40:12 PM »

Good day, Vince.

That is a very honest perspective, to which I fully agree.
I wish everyone would share the same views as you and me ...

It was inevitable that at some point, evolution of modes would lead to situations like this.

You know, I was taught the ham spirit from some of the best Greek ops. In what I was taught,
the operator plays the most significant role in our hobby. It's the attitude, the on-air behaviour
and language used, the techniques and skills developed through time, the inquiring mind and
the "value-for-money" accomplishments, that will distinguish and show respect to one.
Personally, I would add "dedication" and "discipline", as well.

We see eye to eye, that it's all a matter of personal flavor. After all, it's only a game.
But a game with rules. Sure there are many that with one way or another, they violate the rules.
As far as I'm concerned, refer to my previous paragraph :-)

Regarding adulterated 17m cards that became 160m ones, I know exactly who you are referring to,
and I'm so sorry this has happened here ...

Enjoy the rest of your Christmas holidays, OM.

73
Stathis, SV5DKL
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