[CQ-Contest] IF SKIMMER INTERESTS YOU - READ THIS ONE
david.kopacz at aspwebhosting.com
Fri Jun 6 16:07:20 EDT 2008
I followed you right up to the point where I didn't understand that you
actually made a point. Please take no offense, perhaps I missed
something and you can clarify.
If your point was to draw the conclusions you stated as facts, then I
think you left off a very important fact...
STATED: The fact is that Skimmer does not work without a receiver.
STATED: The fact is that if the receiver is located on another continent
or even outside the 500M circle it is a REMOTE RECEIVER regardless of
which mode Skimmer may be running.
CONCLUSION: Whether callsigns are copied by listening to the audio or
whether you attach a code reader to it and have a printed list of
callsigns that are copied, it is a remote receiving operation.
NOT STATED: The fact is that if an operator employs a skimmer at his
LOCAL station inside the 500m circle, using a LOCAL receiver with LOCAL
antennas, and DOES NOT use packet, he is not using REMOTE assistance AND
if he is a single operator, he is not receiving assistance from another
Therefore, in my opinion, the only real issue to be resolved (at least
in the context of CQWW) is whether skimmer is considered "use of DX
alerting assistance of any kind" with respect to the SOAB Unassisted
As a group, we can interpret, misinterpret, debate, argue, disparage,
convict and harass one another all day long, but until we collectively,
or the contest sponsors independently decide whether or not to classify
a locally operated and controlled skimmer as "use of DX alerting
assistance of any kind", within the category of SOAB U, we will
accomplish nothing more than learning one another's opinions, some based
on highly charged emotions and deep rooted beliefs.
I can see where folks already competing in this category would both
want, and not want, to permit this into their category. The debate has
provided compelling arguments on both sides, many stated ever so
eloquently with the same conviction and passion that makes our sport so
So, how do we make this determination? It's actually quite simple, as a
group of hopefully, rational, compassionate and fair minded peers, we
can collectively decide how to compete with one another in a manner that
maintains the spirit of amateur radio contesting. To do this, we may
very well have to completely redefine the rules, add one or more new
categories or even decide to ban certain technologies altogether. I tend
to believe that latter is unnecessary, as re-categorization seems to
make the most sense with regards to fairness for all. But again, this is
one man's opinion.
In the end, I am confident we will get it right. Will everyone be happy?
Probably not. We will quit competing, perhaps a few will, but I believe
most will continue to pursue contesting well into the future regardless
of the resolutions to skimmers use in contesting.
I think Randy has the right idea. Submit ideas for rules changes that
are fair to all involved, invite new people AND technologies, but most
importantly, maintain the spirit of competitive amateur radio
contesting. I think it says a lot for his character that he is even
asking us. Let's entertain him with our wisdom! (chuckle)
Personally, I think a sub-category called CLASSIC added to the mix for
all categories, SOSB, SOAB, M/S, M/2 and M/M would be rather neat. This
co-called Classic category could be setup for those wishing to do things
the old fashioned way, with radios, antennas, and yes, computers for
logging (who has time for paperwork these days). No packet, no skimmer,
just find them and work them.
I am working on my suggested rules changes.
David ~ KY1V
From: cq-contest-bounces at contesting.com
[mailto:cq-contest-bounces at contesting.com] On Behalf Of Stan Stockton
Sent: Friday, June 06, 2008 8:58 AM
To: k1ttt at arrl.net; cq-contest at contesting.com
Subject: [CQ-Contest] IF SKIMMER INTERESTS YOU - READ THIS ONE
I am going to spell this out as simply as I can. I am going
to try to answer my own questions. Let me know if I answer
any of my questions incorrectly.
1. Is there anything in the rules that says I have to use
your packet cluster or any other specific ones? NO
2. Is there anything that prevents anyone who wants from
setting up a network that either includes some packet spots
or not but does include Skimmer spots from a SDR (REMOTE
RECEIVER) in Europe? NO
3. Is there a difference in rules, that have been discussed
or are currently in place, between running the Skimmer
software in the mode that only gives callsigns of stations
calling CQ versus the mode that gives all within the
4. Is there any specification as to how wide the passband
has to be for the REMOTE RECEIVER in Europe or what
frequency the "spotter" puts his SDR on? NO
5. Does an operator who is using the assistance of a
"packet" network have control over what spots are fed into
that network? NO
If I answered all the questions correctly, Skimmer will be
used to provide callsigns of stations calling, copied by
that SDR/Skimmer (REMOTE RECEIVER) on run frequencies
without any rules violations taking place.
If there are questions that I got wrong, let me know which
ones. I believe I can easily work around it.
The fact is that Skimmer does not work without a receiver.
The fact is that if the receiver is located on another
continent or even outside the 500M circle it is a REMOTE
RECEIVER regardless of which mode Skimmer may be running.
Whether callsigns are copied by listening to the audio or
whether you attach a code reader to it and have a printed
list of callsigns that are copied, it is a remote receiving
Don't get sidetracked by this. It is just an aside.
Although wrong in either instance, most CW operators would
have more respect for someone who fed the audio from a
remote receiver in Europe and actually did something that
the average guy on the street could not do as opposed to
looking at the information appear on the computer screen
from a code reader Skimmer) attached to that REMOTE RECEIVER
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