WSPR, what the ….?

wsprI read more and more lately about WSPR. For instance, this morning I did see this article from VK2PTM. I getting more curious what this WSPR is and how it’s working. And you radio amateurs out there know what we guys and gals do about curiosity…. we will disappear into our Research & Development department and find out what the fuzz is all about!
So that’s my plan for the coming weeks: let’s find out. I’ll report my findings here on this blog.

No sunspots!

The Sun is now in the quietest phase of its 11-year activity cycle, the solar minimum – in fact, it has been unusually quiet this year – with over 200 days so far with no observed sunspots. The solar wind has also dropped to its lowest levels in 50 years. Scientists are unsure of the significance of this unusual calm, but are continually monitoring our closest star with with an array of telescopes and satellites. Seen below are some recent images of the Sun in more active times.

See all pictures at Boston.com

Logging

Earlier on I wrote about logging software. I still use MacLoggerDX from Dog Park software. It’s a fine program and all my logs up to now have been made with MacLoggerDX.
However, I don’t like logging in a local application. For a couple of reasons:

– local logging makes the logbook unavailable from another location;
– it’s hard to show your logs online somehow;
– it’s hard to match your logs with someone else’s logs.

That’s why I was looking for an online log application. At first I thought such an application wasn’t yet available until I stumbled upon HamLog.eu, which was exactly like what I wanted! I’m going to upload my logs to this site and see if I like it. If I only had a local widget which collects my radio data from my rig and adds it to the logging information, then I will be in logging heaven 😉

Update:

Last night I tried to import my log from MacLoggerDX to HamLog. It wasn’t working very well, HamLog only recognized 5 entries of my log. I didn’t put more time in it because I was very tired. This morning I opened my mail and there was a mail from Csobádi Zoltán (the webmaster of HamLog.eu, HA9RQ).
He wrote very nicely that he had noticed that I was trying to upload my log and that things didn’t work out. So he looked into it and detected that I was using a Mac and HamLog didn’t interpret the Mac ENTER right. So he converted my log by hand! Now that’s what I call: good service!

Thank you Zoli, keep up the good work!

Antenna’s are up!

Last fridaynight after a good Italian meal and a few glasses of nice wine it happend: I’ve temporarely overwon my fear of heights and climbed on our roof to put up the antenna!
First I’ve mounted my Diamond V2000A for 6m, 2m and 70 cm.
After a few local QSO’s I heard there were extremely good conditions on HF. Hmmm, still no antenna for HF….

One more glass of wine and there I went up again to put up my open dipole in an inverted L-shape. A few hours later I was on the air on 20m, 40m etc.
Still need to do a lot of work to the shack, but with the antenna’s up I think we can say: PA1JIM is on the air again!

Hope to hear you on the bands soon!

New callsign

Agentschap TelecomToday when I arrived at home, there it was: the letter with the confirmation of my F-license. I immediately logon the site of Agentschap Telecom (the Dutch Authority who hands out the licenses) and requested my new callsign: PA1JIM !

From now on this website will be also available under the domain: http://www.pa8e.nl

Passed!

examsLadies and gentlemen, we’ve got him! I’ve passed for my F-license exam!! Still need to wait for the official answers. Thirteen wrong answers when I was allowed to make 15 wrong. So I think I’m in the save zone. Whow, very big big big relief!
Now I have to choose my callsign. I think it’s gonna be PA1JIM.