[CQ-Contest] Skimmer for S/O in IARU

DL8MBS prickler.schneider at t-online.de
Tue Jun 3 11:35:00 EDT 2008

Michael Coslo wrote:

>I haven't done paper logging, but I have to imagine that  
>the difference between computer and paper logging has to be much  
>greater than any presumed Skimmer advantage.
Sorry to disagree (and still doing a lot of paper logging, i.e. when 
guest-op at a friend´s house for a few hours).
Computer logging make things much easier and faster (calls need not to 
be written a second time on the dupe sheet and a lot of paddle-time is 
BUT: Computer logging does nothing that is by itself impossible for a 
human. You can run a pile-up by paddle and you can S&P using a paddle 
with the left hand and writing/tuning with the right - but no human is 
or ever will be able to have an instant overwiew over an entire band 
that shows all unworked stations. To scan a band as quick as possible 
for the little fresh meat available during the last hours of a contest 
is a crucial skill - completely obsolete with skimmer (not obsolete with 
packet which will not show "bread&butter"-stations just coming to the 
band and not being rare or multipliers).

Try it and call CQ on a skimmer-watched band and then look at the 
reverse beacon network or enter your call in the search function. You 
will feel the surveillance power of skimmer - which is great 
technological-wise. But  it replaces so much of the already reduced 
human part in contesting that there is not much operating skill left to 
be compared between competitors (who not only want to be compared as 
station builders).

(irony on: like many others I won´t go to this training camp for a 
potential contesting to come: 
http://www.kika.de/fernsehen/a_z/m/macius/spielzimmer/index.shtml - 
click on the firefighter car in the lower left, then on the 
"weiter"-buttons in the lower right - then the appearing signs are to be 
quickly clicked - some help and some not, like in contesting) irony off

Usual disclaimer: please don´t denounce me as someone wanting to have AM 
back etc. - you wouldn´t denounce a marathon runner in this way when he 
objects to introducing wheel chairs with engines as the advanced 
technology to span his 42,5 km - and being told that he should embrace 

Best 73, Chris


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