We Robots

K2MM at MasPar.COM K2MM at MasPar.COM
Mon Aug 9 12:55:17 EDT 1993

Rick/N6XI:  Thanks for the kind words.

> . . . my own premature comments.  I promise to read at least a full
> day's mail before replying . . .

I thought your previous posting made sense.  Replying to messages as you
read them is a blessing/curse of e-mail.  No reason to feel embarrassed.

Other postings had suggested all-robot contests.  I thought that sounded
good.  But that won't happen until robots get popular enough.  So, as a
practical matter, mixing it up with human ops in existing contests seems
natural.  Besides, copying hand-sent code is a more challenging problem.

So, what about listings?  Separate seems OK.  If you want to protect
human ops from "unfair robot competition", then it might suffice to list
robot-assisted entries with other Single-Op Assisted scores.  This would
accommodate semi-robot operation, which seems to be along robot-op's
natural evolutionary path.  (Jumping on packet spots seems equivalent to
having a robot tune a second rig for you looking for multipliers.  Even
if you had to manually QSY to work the mult, wouldn't that be nice?)

>From the other side, fully-automated robot-only operation seems worthy
of special recognition.  A separate listing could serve to protect
full-robot ops from "unfair human competition".  At least, that is,
until the day when robot ops' scores exceed those of human ops.  At that
time, the separate listing may serve to provide robot operation with
"political cover".

> It would be unfortunate if contest bandwidth were gobbled up by dozens
> of identical robots, especially if they were CQing.

I don't think CQ'ing will be a problem.  I'm assuming that unattended
robot operation will not be allowed.  So, who's gonna baby-sit these CQ
machines?  Contesters, I presume.  How long will a lousy (sub-manual)
rate be tolerated?  Not long, I'd guess, except perhaps by a few
die-hard robot-code developers.

(The real answer may turn out to be, "until the op wakes up from his
nap".  This abuse can be prevented by wiring the amplifier's B+ through
a computer-controlled relay to the mike or keyer.  At long last there's
some prospect of actually implementing the mythological "execute
programmer" instruction!  Bug?  What bug?  FFFFZZZZZZZZAAAAPPP!  EOF!)

73.  --John/K2MM

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