News

WSJT-X 2.4.0 will introduce Q65, a digital protocol designed for minimal two-way QSOs over especially difficult propagation paths. On paths with Doppler spread more than a few Hz, the weak-signal performance of Q65 is the best among all WSJT-X modes. Q65 is particularly effective for tropospheric scatter, ionospheric scatter, and EME on VHF and higher bands, as well as other types of fast-fading signals.

Q65 uses 65-tone frequency-shift keying and builds on the demonstrated weak-signal strengths of QRA64, a mode introduced to WSJT-X in 2016. Q65 differs from QRA64 in the following important ways:

• A new low-rate Q-ary Repeat Accumulate code for forward error correction
• User messages and sequencing identical to those in FT4, FT8, FST4, and MSK144
• A unique tone for time and frequency synchronization. As with JT65, this “sync tone” is readily visible on the waterfall spectral display. Unlike JT65, synchronization and decoding are effective even when meteor pings or other short signal enhancements are present.
• Optional submodes with T/R sequence lengths 15, 30, 60, 120, and 300 s.
• A new, highly reliable list-decoding technique for messages that contain previously copied message fragments.

Read the new Q65 Quick Start Guide at:

https://physics.princeton.edu/pulsar/k1jt/Q65_Quick_Start.pdf

The latest RSGB 'Tonight @ 8' webinar (11th Jan 2021) was very good. Some of them have been quite clunky and awkward, but this one compresses an awful lot of interesting stuff in. The topic is 'Amateur Radio Construction' and was dual-presented by Steve Hartley G0FUW and Pete Juliano N6QW. I follow both of these guys and their knowledge spans most of 'modern' radio from the crystal receivers some of us made back in the day to the very latest SDR homebrew projects that are still in development. Pretty fast-paced in the second half (Pete doesn't like to leave any whitespace!) but you've got a pause button right there in front of you, so make use of it if needed - I know I did.

RSGB Tonight @ 8 - Amateur Radio Construction

Dave LaPierre - WB1EAD 

QSL Card WB1EAD

Here is a photo and a QSL card for David, WB1EAD a very regular participant in my lunchtime net. I'm his (unpaid!) QSL manager and have some of his cards. If any member works him and wants a card they can ask me for one.

73. Ken

Winterfest 2021

This weekend is a “Virtual Hamfest" - the lecture schedule looks interesting.

When looking at the lecture schedule the times are CST - that’s 6 hours behind the UK.

Well, here it is - a reworked website.

So what's so great about it? Well, truth be told, it's not a jaw-droppingly beautiful state-of-the-art vision of the future. I don't think the club wanted or needed that. I've tried to keep the layout fairly similar to the previous site, because I know a lot of people, myself included, very much liked the old website.

It doesn't yet have loads of new content either. No, but it will have all the old content, and it will have new material as well as additional functionality going forward.

So we know what it isn't... what DOES it do for the club?

It's all about sustainability. Tony was wanting to step back, and nobody else was frantically waving their arms in the air. I've been there before. I'm sure Tony had a lot of fun over the years, but I think he said he's been doing it for 8 or 9 years, and that's long enough for anyone. He was obviously doing the newsletter last year as well. Too much.

This website sits on a platform called Joomla. It's like a fancy dynamic website hosting environment. It's known as a Content Management System, or CMS and it does what it says on the tin. It's free and open source. It's well supported and has been for many years - and it works. Almost too good to be true. Best of all, I've used it before and I know the basics. I'm not an expert, and I don't code in any of these languages, but I can get by.

As the Joomla development team so eloquently put it: "A content management system is software that allows you to create and manage webpages easily by separating the creation of your content from the mechanics required to present it on the web".

That'll do for us.

If you've visited the website before, hopefully it'll look fairly familiar in layout for all it's differences in style.

It won't contain a newsletter though. Those individual articles will be integrated into one of the menu items - such as News or Feature Articles.

Joomla allows relatively straightforward global changes to the look and feel using 'templates', but I'm going for functional first. It's like many things in life these days - the more you customise them, the more trouble it is when it comes time to upgrade.

And upgrading is an absolute must when it comes to websites; particularly with respect to security.

Well, that's enough for now. I'll be transferring more and more of the old content over in the coming weeks and then I'll have a rest before breaking new ground. That ground will hopfully involve showing some of you folks how to add content to the website yourselves!

73's

Berni M0XYF