[CQ-Contest] Reverse Beacon Network - too much success?

Doug Smith [W7KF] doug at w7kf.com
Wed Mar 3 20:30:32 PST 2010

The magic of HF radio communication is that it does NOT require a hundred 
billion dollars worth of infrastructure. It does not require undersea cables, 
satellites in orbit, countless microwave relay sites, cell sites, ISPs, packet 
switched networks, servers, routers, investment bankers or stockholders. NONE 

HF radio communication only requires a couple of guys with some relatively 
simple gear and antennas. Maybe they even built their own gear out of 
scrounged parts. Maybe their antenna is a bit of wire strung up in a tree.
These guys generate RF and launch it into the ether, bound for parts unknown. 
Some other guy picks up a few millionths of a volt of that puny signal and 
carefully nurtures it, amplifies it, converts it to audio and decodes it. And, 
then the process reverses and we have a QSO in the log.

That is *magic* and it makes your heart beat a little faster. Just imagine it!

Sending an email, talking on a cell phone -- yes, amazing technology. I 
suppose the current term would be "awesome". But, it has no soul. It is as 
empty as a politicians promise. It's just a phone call. Or an email. Or a spot 
on the cluster.

It has *no* magic.

-Doug, W7KF

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