Dave, any time a trend gets a name, like Luddite, that name substitutes for
thinking (like a name for a racial type of person). Further, it is typical
of rigid personalities to reject reasoned criticism of something they have
a powerful and even vested interest in, extending to the point of
identifying the subject (ham radio) or object (a beloved radio brand) with
the inner human self.
Often that rejection of reasoned criticism goes on to try to throw out the
person delivering the critique and the creation of a "protected zone" of
isolation from critiques. That latter step guarantees the "inside crowd"
of insulation from any contrary thinking and thus ossification of that
crowd (similar to Romney's advisers thinking that he will win even to
election day due to listening only to the "inside crowd").
The use of pejorative language, like "childish and shrill," further is a
symptom of the reduction of a reasoned line of comment to a simplistic
kneejerk reaction devoid of reason.
The care of elephants is a noble occupation and one which I wish I could
do, but it is very expensive, beyond my means.
My overall point remains, and that is that not every new invention is
automatically good (like the atomic bomb, but I guess you would like that)
and, further, the careful use of new inventions means evaluating their real
usefulness and long term benefits and drawbacks of the item or idea. That
evaluation can not occur in the vacuum of blind acceptance of "the new."
The result of the innovation of the CW Skimmer is, I argue, the reduction
of a time-honored practice of the art of radio communication and the joy of
learning and doing something that is difficult, beneficial to the person,
and elegant. Just as there is no art to making a telephone call, today,
there is no art in the mechanical delivery of CW messages via an easy
What I affirm is that ham radio exists for what I call "a higher fun" which
eschews the easy and simplistic by seeking the complex and activities that
yield deep satisfaction that comes from taking on a task and goal and
accomplishing that after due effort. In any other context, ham radio is a
firmly obsolete mode of communication, so I see the hobby as similar to
collecting, restoring, and using antique cars... which occurs for the joy
of the activity rather than looking for the easiest transportation. Why
one would seek to put a 12 cylinder turbo charged 2012 motor into a Model T
is beyond me, and seems to be simply arcane. Thus, I advocate the practice
of ham radio as close to its origins in order to preserve the values
inherent there and the "higher fun" of this path.
Of course, the Skimmer type stuff also forever makes ham radio contesting a
rather pointless activity, devoid of those pleasures I describe. I mourn
the loss of this fun for you and future generations.
On Sat, Dec 1, 2012 at 5:56 AM, Dave Zeph <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> ** **
> Charlie you dislike every development in Amateur Radio so vehemently that
> I wonder instead of your childish and shrill posts you take up another
> hobby instead. You accomplish nothing except to paint yourself as the Post
> Child Luddite.l****
> ** **
> Based on where you live might I suggest Elephant Husbandry?****
> ** **
> ** **
> Dave, W9PA****
> ** **
> *From:* Charles Harpole [mailto:email@example.com]
> *Sent:* Friday, 30 November, 2012 11:04
> *To:* firstname.lastname@example.org
> *Subject:* Re: [CQ-Contest] How isthe Skimmer different?****
> ** **
> Dave, thanks for your message because it gives me practice at holding my
> temper with a purposeful blockhead.****
> My point was that RTTY and PSK are the real computer digital modes and if
> an op wanted more automated work, he should go to these modes and stop
> messing up a classic skill that would do any operator well and proud to
> operate with skill and grace.****
> Geeze, some just cant get it. 73, Charly****
> On Fri, Nov 30, 2012 at 9:16 AM, Dave Zeph <email@example.com> wrote:****
> Hate to break it to you, but there is a RTTY Skimmer.
> And DAMN - PSK is a Digital Mode requiring a computer to decode.
> Guess you are just out of luck.
> Dave, W9PA****
> -----Original Message-----
> From: CQ-Contest [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On Behalf Of
> Charles Harpole
> Sent: Thursday, 29 November, 2012 20:03
> To: David Gilbert; CQ-Contest Reflector
> Subject: [CQ-Contest] How isthe Skimmer different?
> Dave, et al.....
> Very few automated CW methods allow a person to win a CW contest WITHOUT
> KNOWING ANY CODE except the CW Skimmer, partly due to the accuracy of this
> cursed system. True, spots can give you call signs, too, but their
> accuracy is less.
> For the record, I do not use CW decoders, spotting networks, nor band maps
> and I do send every contact with a squeeze key. I do this for two
> reasons... one is I enjoy using a superior skill (compared to reading a
> computer screen) and two is I am using copying CW with only ears and brain
> and sending CW by hand as a way to keep my aging brain/hand system
> working. My mom kept sharp in her advancing years with crossword puzzles,
> I am using CW.
> My point still stands....the joy of using CW as it was invented to be used
> is greater and more deeply satisfying than milking the preprepared pap from
> CW Skimmer or other automatic devices. I compared this situation to
> natural vs. artificial s*x, and was banned for saying that by the ****
> Contest Group's reflector, so here goes here.
> Natural and joyful is really better, try it some time. 73, Charly
> PS, if the Skimmer is actually really keeping CW alive on the bands, I say
> go to RTTY or PSK for full automation and forget the mode that started
> On Thu, Nov 29, 2012 at 11:03 PM, David Gilbert
> > That's really pretty funny considering that you cannot in the least tell
> > on the air whether the person you are working is using CW Skimmer or not.
> > Your English may be fine but your logic definitely is not. You can think
> > of CW Skimmer as simply the combination of a few other things that have
> > been in existence (and legal for contesting) for many years:
> > a. CW decoders
> > b. spotting networks (when claiming an assisted category)
> > c. bandmaps
> > Your rant is sadly misplaced. I can think of other things like Super
> > Check Partial and "History" Files generated by others that have
> > far more to the lessening of skill in radiosport than does CW Skimmer,
> > I can almost guarantee that you use your logger or a memory keyer to
> > actually send CW instead of using a hand key dit-by-dah as did those
> > "founding users" (whatever that means). And you do know that hams,
> > including those who use CW Skimmer, are pretty much the only ones keeping
> > this elegant communication mode alive, right?? All those other users
> > simply abandoned it long ago in favor of modes requiring even less
> > skill.
> > For the record, I have never used CW Skimmer in text decode mode during a
> > contest ... but I see absolutely no difference between it and other forms
> > of assistance when following the rules of the contest. Please explain to
> > me how I am wrong ... but try using logic this time.
> > Dave AB7E
> > On 11/29/2012 2:05 AM, Charles Harpole wrote:
> >> I enjoy trying to use the English language to be specific and
> >> Here is my latest effort..............
> >> The CW Skimmer is an obscene perversity of ham radio. All the art and
> >> skill of this elegant communication mode, CW, is destroyed. The
> >> users of Morse Code, who saved ships and passed millions of messages
> >> and mundane, are dishonored. The joy of doing a difficult activity well
> >> is
> >> lost. Ham radio in general and contesting specifically is changed
> >> for the worse by this abomination.
> > ______________________________**_________________
> > CQ-Contest mailing list
> > CQ-Contest@contesting.com
> Charly, HS0ZCW****
> CQ-Contest mailing list
> Charly, HS0ZCW****
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