My subscription to Life expired, but I still have a subscription to Mad.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Surfin’: Excellence in Websiting

This week, Surfin’ visits a personal ham radio website that can be a model for other personal websites.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas

It figures that a ham would have an aluminum Christmas tree! (That's our Squeaky posing next to our 50-year-old "antique" tree.)

Anyway, Merry Christmas and 73 from all the WA1LOU family on Compounce Mountain, Wolcott, Connecticut!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Friday, December 16, 2011

Surfin’: Where’s Sebastian?

This week, Surfin’ asks “Where’s DO8SEM?” and finds him -- along with some cool Mac OS X SDR applications.


Friday, December 9, 2011

Surfin’: Ultralight -- An Appetizing Radio Diet

This week, Surfin’ discovers ultralight radios, which are most definitely not your fathers’ transistor radio.


Friday, December 2, 2011

Surfin’: Developing New Digital Voice Software, Continued

This week, Surfin’ checks back in and discovers VK5DGR’s amazing progress in the digital voice software field.


Friday, November 25, 2011

Surfin’: Tracking the Dead Zone

This week, Surfin' describes how hams can participate in an International Space Station experiment to test a spacecraft propulsion technology’s effects on RF.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Surfin’: Smörgåsbording

This week, revisit two recent installments of Surfin’ and learn all about ham radio in the 21st century.


Friday, November 11, 2011

Surfin: Going Galena

This week, your Surfin’ Contributing Editor did not have the remotest idea that he'd be building a do-it-yourself radio next week.


Friday, November 4, 2011

Surfin’: When One Thing (Music) Leads to Another (Radio)

This week, Surfin’ considers different way of assembling a software defined radio (SDR).


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Lucky 13

generator For the past two years, I have kept a running total here of the amount of snow that falls at my home on Compounce Mountain. I start the count on December 1 and end it whenever the last snow falls in the spring.

So what do I do with the 13 inches that fell here October 29-30?

Although most of the leaves had fallen from the trees in my neck of the woods, that was not the case in the surrounding area. The heavy wet snow that landed on the trees still full of leaves caused tree branches, as well as whole trees to fall and damage the power infrastructure.

As a result, my house has had no power, no telephone, no Internet access, no weather station, and no ham radio since Sunday morning. My electricity pimp has not dared to estimate when it expects to restore power, so the prospects for a quick fix look bleak.

The little woman says that we should buy a generator. I wonder how well that will go over as her Christmas gift?

Probably not very well.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Friday, October 21, 2011

Friday, October 14, 2011

Surfin’: Got Updates?

This week, your old -- but young at heart – Surfin’ conductor provides updates to past episodes the column.


Friday, October 7, 2011

Friday, September 30, 2011

Surfin: Negotiating the HPSDR Highway

This week, Surfin’ considers resources on the Internet to sort out HPSDR hardware, software and firmware.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Friday, September 23, 2011

Surfin’: Find Your Opening on the Map


This week, Surfin’ visits a website where a map reveals the real-time status of the VHF band.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Friday, September 9, 2011

Monday, September 5, 2011

Summer 2011 TAPR PSR is available now

Spring 2011 of TAPR PSR is now available here.

Table of Contents of the Summer 2011, #116 issue of TAPR PSR:

* President's Corner

* Board of Directors Elections

* DCC Schedules

* Bible’s Blog

* Digital ATV Yahoo Group

* What’s With the ### ?

* Hermes on YouTube

* Time for More Time

* TAPR at Dayton Hamvention

* TAPR Board of Directors Meeting Minutes

* Join TAPR on Twitter & Facebook

* VK6APH Receives Award

* APRS Supports Bicycle Riders Public Service Event

* APRS Tactical Call Signs

* Write Here!

* Fixing A Little TAPR History

* The Fine Print

* Our Membership App

By the way, the TAPR editorial staff is now accepting contributions for the next issue of PSR. October 15, 2011 is the deadline for submissions; send your submissions to the author of this blog.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Surfin’: Got Heathkits?

This week, Surfin’ celebrates Heathkit’s reentry into the kit business.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Remembering Irene

irene_ryan There were no visits from Murphy this weekend despite a visit from hurricane Irene, which was downgraded to "tropical storm" status by the time it got here.

The rain was heavy and we totaled 3.76 inches over the weekend, not much when compared to other areas of the state which were pushing two digit totals.

The wind was constant with speeds reaching as high as 43 MPH Sunday morning and it was still blowing steadily when I went to bed Sunday night, but it did not do much damage. The yard was full of leaves, twigs, and branches, including one huge 20-foot branch that I had to subdivide before I could haul it away.

The guyed 55-foot tower was steady as a rock throughout the storm. I was a little concerned that the ground was so saturated that one of the guy anchors might come loose, but it never happened.

And I saved the best for last: we never lost power.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Surfin’: More TV DX


This week , Surfin’ is still sitting in front of the boob tube waiting for Cuba, Canada or Iowa to come rolling in on Channel 2.

Friday, August 19, 2011

How’s TV DX?


This week, Surfin’ recalls the lazy, hazy, crazy days of summertime TV DX.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Surfin’: Beyond Digital Voice

This week, Surfin’ visits the diverse website of an old friend of the old contributing editor.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Surfin’: Got Good Ground? Not So Much

This week, Surfin’ readers share war stories that are grounded in reality.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Surfin’: Got Good Ground?


This week, Surfin’ considers our ham radio stations’ connection to Planet Earth.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Friday, July 15, 2011

Surfin’: Hill-Topping for the Golden Packet


This week, Surfin’ urges hams to climb every mountain on the East and West Coasts in the quest for the Golden Packet.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Surfin’: Still Fixing Our Writing

This week, Surfin’ assembles the responses to last week’s attempt at fixing our diction.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Surfin’: Fixing Our Writing

This week, Surfin’ visits a website that attempts to correct our bad writing habits.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Friday, June 17, 2011

Surfin’: Hammin’, Hackin’ and GPSin’

This week, Surfin’ considers hacking ham radio projects and one thing leads to another.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Surfin’: Hammin’ North to Alaska


This week, Surfin’ counts backwards and visits our 49th state ham radio-wise.

Friday, June 3, 2011

RadioShack Seeking Suggestions for DIY Parts

(This story appeared on ARRL News earlier this week.)

“RadioShack is now looking for input from us, as members of the larger DIY community, on parts we’d like to see them carry. There’s a video explaining what they’re looking for, and a place to add comments.”

Read the rest of the story here.

Surfin’: Hammin’ in Hawaii


This week, Surfin’ revisits a website all about ham radio in the Aloha State.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Monday, May 16, 2011

Spring 2011 of TAPR PSR is now available


Spring 2011 of TAPR PSR is now available here.

Table of Contents of the Spring 2011, #115 issue of TAPR PSR:

  • President’s Corner
  • TAPR Digital Forum
  • Research Opportunity Related to Packet Switched Communication Networks
  • openHPSDR Update
  • Present at the Creation
  • Write Here!
  • 100W Class-A Amplifier for Penelope
  • 2011 TAPR ARRL DCC
  • A Little TAPR History
  • The Fine Print
  • Our Membership App

By the way, the TAPR editorial staff is now accepting contributions for the next issue of TAPR PSR (August 15, 2011 is the deadline for submissions). Send your submissions to wa1lou at

Friday, May 13, 2011

Friday, May 6, 2011

Monday, May 2, 2011

My Sad Bat Story

Oliver, our "Number One Cat" escaped just before dark yesterday.

He returned about 30 minutes later with a trophy. In the past, he has brought home dead birds, moles, voles, chipmunks, and mice. Last night, he brought home a bat and deposited it in his trophy case, also known as our front porch.

My job is to bury the dead. Actually, I just dump the dead in the storm drain so that our dogs don't find and perhaps eat the carcasses.

I got a small shovel to scoop up the remains. As I began to scoop up the bat, it chirped at me and fluttered its wings. The poor thing was still alive, but one wing was damaged (a big hole) and its body was cut up badly and seeping blood. In that condition, it was evident it would never fly again and would probably die sooner or later, so I decided to put it out of its misery.

I used a sharp chisel to do the job. I hated doing it.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Surfin’: Moving Packets with DDP

surfin537 This week, Surfin’ looks at a new protocol for moving packets through the ether.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Spring Snow IV

The temperature only got down to 36 last night, but it snowed enough to coat everything outside. The rain since then has made that snow coating disappear.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Surfin’: Eyeing Apps for the Apple of My Eye

This week, Surfin’ looks to Woz’s old stomping grounds for ham radio applications.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Surfin’: Tell Your Story

surfin535 This week, Surfin’ relays an invitation to tell how ham radio touched your life and news about some new allies on the GPS QRM front.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

The Big Time

the_big_time My daughter Hayley is pursuing a writing career. She has been blogging for awhile in various places on the Internet, but yesterday, she hit the big time when her blog post appeared on The Huffington Post for the first time.

Needless to say, I am very proud!

Monday, April 11, 2011

70 With Snow

The temperature hit 70 about ten minutes ago, but as I type this, I can still see a pile of snow sitting on the curb across the street. The accompanying photo juxtaposes that snow pile with the daffodils that are ready to bloom in our front yard.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Friday, April 1, 2011

Spring Snow III

It snowed again with a 1- to 2-inch accumulation on the ground and roads. That's 76 inches total snowfall since the first day of winter!

Surfin’: Visiting Your AM Radio Days

Last week’s return to Surfin’s radio roots begat this week’s return to your radio roots.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Surfin’: AM Radio Days


This week, Surfin’ returns to its radio roots: 520-1610, before kc became hertz.