[CQ-Contest] The Meaning of Assisted

Ryan Jairam rjairam at gmail.com
Fri Sep 17 12:19:34 PDT 2010

What is skimmer? It is a radio receiver hooked to a computer that
decodes transmissions across an entire swath of frequencies at once.
It is not an extra person and the data is not received from an
external source such as the internet or packet cluster.

It is also not assistance because no one is assisting you.

But because it is an advantage, I do think that it could be placed in
a separate category but to call it assistance is a stretch.

The problem is that until skimmer came along, pretty much all bases
were covered.  Now with pandora's box open, contest organizers had
debated what to do about it.

Renaming "assisted" to "unlimited" I guess is appropriate.  I guess
"assistance" really equates to "advantage."

I have to wonder though, what are we really testing in contests? Are
we testing stations or operators?  Or both?  Skimmer is not an
operator. It is part of your station and the data comes from your

Ryan, N2RJ

On Fri, Sep 17, 2010 at 1:49 PM,  <richnn3w at verizon.net> wrote:
> I've used Skimmer in contests - in WAE CW which is allowed for any category single op and in IARU as part of a multi op.
> I cannot, for the life of me, imagine how ANYONE could consider Skimmer to NOT be an assistance aid.  You have the entire bandmap laid out for you without your mind doing anything.  It is a complete game changer and should NOT be ever placed into the same category as an unassisted operator doing all the operating and listening by himself.
> 73 Rich NN3W
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Ryan A. Jairam,

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