[CQ-Contest] WSJT-X and contesting.

DXer hfdxmonitor at gmail.com
Mon Dec 3 19:50:24 EST 2018

Outside of contests, I'm 100% FT8 these days.

I have been using the mode from day 1, making on-air contacts with the 
developers with a freshly compiled version of WSJT-X when it first went 

I won't go into details about how the mode works, but the 'mainstream' 
idea that FT8 takes the ham out of hamradio, it's fully automated, 
requires no skill, etc. is bovine scatology.

Keep in mind that FT8 is not a conversational mode, and while it can be 
automated, it requires code modifications and/or additional software for 
it to work as a zombie bot. Any automation is a 'deviation of purpose' 
perpetrated by individual users, neither supported nor encouraged by the 

The DXpedition mode is a fantastic development. I expect it'll be 
adopted by lots of dxpeditions.

Now that hopefully I showed my bona fide ignorance about the mode, I'll 
say that FT8 contesting is not a good fit. No synchronized mode is a 
good fit.

The change from 75 to 77 bits will cause a lot of unnecessary problems. 
A new sub-mode would have been a better way for introducing FT8 contesting.

73 de Vince, VA3VF

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