FT8 – Tipping Point for Ham Radio?

2018-11-29T10:09:16+00:00October 16th, 2018|FT8, News|

This is a view from NASA of the sun today, October 9, 2018, and I am making 10m DX contacts one after another.  Zero sunspots but working DX on FT8!  Is FT8 creating a “tipping point” for amateur radio at the very bottom of the solar cycle? Several years ago I was captivated by a book written by Malcolm Gladwell called, The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference.  Merriam-Webster defines tipping point as, “the critical point in a situation, process, or system beyond which a significant and often unstoppable effect or change takes place.”  In his book, Gladwell describes how, “The tipping point is that magic moment when an idea, trend, or social behavior crosses a threshold, tips, and spreads like wildfire.”  He shows us how the phenomenon applies to everything from flu epidemics to the explosion of new technologies. Does the FT8 mode included in WSJT-X software constitute a tipping point in ham radio for good or for harm?  There are many ham radio opinion blogs on the Internet that strongly or sometimes sarcastically take one or the other stance.  There is even an Internet poll asking, “Is FT8 damaging amateur radio?” At this moment it is 52% yes, 45% no and 3% undecided.[1]  All of the articles and videos I have seen agree on one undeniable fact - FT8 has since its introduction in June of 2017 achieved “killer app” or tipping point status.  Some think it will kill amateur radio and [...]

The Dream Frequency

2018-10-16T14:26:14+00:00August 22nd, 2018|News|

It was before we got all that we have, that it was the hardest to believe our dreams would come true. Now, it seems like it wasn’t meant to be any other way. But still, we can’t forget about what we held close that made us feel so inspired to begin with. For some, it might have been a bike, a ball, or maybe even a game of some sort. For others, dreams came in the form of radio waves that traveled across space and time. Ham Radios have been around for decades, and for decades they’ve been doing everything from saving lives during emergency situations to creating competition in the field of radiosport. But for some, ham radio equipment was a gateway into a mysterious and unknown world that we no longer look at with curiosity. What happened? We’ve surrounded ourselves with possessions that the world around us told us made sense, and along the way, we lost sight of what really intrigued us. We don’t blame you. With all the innovative technology that exists today why would you waste time with such an outdated device? You wouldn’t. That’s why we combined the two. Founded in 2003, FlexRadio Systems has been chasing the ham radio dream for decades and we continue to dedicate ourselves to the advancement of radio technology and the innovation of our unique product. With an 8 inch, high-definition touch screen, the Maestro control console gives operators complete vision without needing a computer, while two real-time [...]