[CQ-Contest] Fwd: Proposal for an ongoing FT event #FT8 #FT4

ktfrog007 at aol.com ktfrog007 at aol.com
Tue Jun 8 19:22:11 EDT 2021

Many have remarked that FT activity is like an ongoing 24/7 contest.  That's true, except there's no real contest.  This email is a suggestion for one that some organization might want to establish.
Since grid locs are a normal part of the FT exchange (most of the time), HF as well as VHF/UHF grid chasing has become an interest in the FT community.  Grids could also be used for another interesting activity: distance scoring.  Right now grid locs are used for distance scoring in the Makrothen RTTY and the Stew Perry contests and perhaps others that I don't know about.
It might be fun to hold annual events, competitions, if you like, that are based on the total distances worked by participating stations.  Score listings could be based on something fun like astronomical distances (How many trips to the moon and back? Can anyone make it to the Sun?).
I don't know an easy way to compute such a score at the moment, but I did an experiment today.  I combined my own AB1J and W1W  logs (wsjtx-log.adi) for this year, doctored it appropriately in the ADIFMaster editor to make it look like a Makrothen log and then uploaded it into an empty N1MM+ Makrothen contest data base (however, see Addendum note 2).  It loaded into N1MM+ fine and then I did a rescore and found my distance total is 7,364,460 km.  
This isn't exactly correct since the Makrothen scoring gives more points for 40m and 80m, but it gives me an idea of what to expect from distance scoring.  Of course, there's no problem using the Makrothen scoring rules for our purposes if we wanted to  What we need in any case is a distance calculation app that would be easier to use than my test method above.  That app, like the truth, may be out there somewhere, but I couldn't find it today.  If anyone knows where to get a grid loc distance scoring program, please let me know.
Does this idea have any resonance?  Even if not, it might be fun at the end of the year for interested people to calculate a yearly distance total.  I could send out a similar email at year's end to collect scores to post if anyone is interested.  If done only once a year, my test method might be bearable but maybe I can come up with a better way in the meantime.
73,Ken, AB1J

Addendum 1:  Here are a few lines from my FT ADIF file to show how I changed it to fake the Makrothen.  
- WARC band QSOs were switched to the nearest legacy band so they would be included in the scoring.    60m went to 40m, 30m to 20m and 17m & 12m to 15m.    I kept  the FREQ column for reference, but changed it to X-FREQ so it would be ignored.- FT8, FT4 (MFSK) and a few JT65 were converted to RTTY.    - I didn't bother to look up missing grid locs for this test.  - N1MM+ didn't seem to mind the non-RST signal report data.

<CALL:5>VA3WU <MODE:4>RTTY <RST_SENT:3>+04 <RST_RCVD:3>+05 <QSO_DATE:8>20210102 <TIME_ON:6>135345 <QSO_DATE_OFF:8>20210102 <TIME_OFF:6>135445 <BAND:3>40m <X-FREQ:8>5.358006 <STATION_CALLSIGN:4>AB1J <MY_GRIDSQUARE:6>FN42JJ <CONTEST_ID:14>MAKROTHEN-RTTY <TX_PWR:2>90 <EOR>
<CALL:4>W0GJ <MODE:4>RTTY <RST_SENT:3>-10 <RST_RCVD:3>-07 <QSO_DATE:8>20210102 <TIME_ON:6>135500 <QSO_DATE_OFF:8>20210102 <TIME_OFF:6>135600 <BAND:3>40m <X-FREQ:8>5.358006 <STATION_CALLSIGN:4>AB1J <MY_GRIDSQUARE:6>FN42JJ <CONTEST_ID:14>MAKROTHEN-RTTY <TX_PWR:2>90 <GRIDSQUARE:4>EN43 <EOR>

Addendum 2:  This is ONLY for those who double log FT QSOs in both N1MM+ and WSJT-X.  I log all my QSOs into N1MM+, any mode, so all FT QSOs go there as well as into the WSJT-X logs.  All FT is double logged.  When I tried to upload my fake Makrothen log, N1MM+ thought I was loading duplicate QSOs.  If I had gone ahead, it would have loaded them in and also deleted them from my normal N1MM+ date base. I think that's what would have happened, so to be safe I did the whole operation on another computer where I also have N1MM+ installed.

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