[aprssig] Re: D-STAR video on YouTube

Mark Fellhauer sparkfel at qwest.net
Mon Sep 24 21:26:10 CDT 2007

First off, I understand the opinion that D-Star violates the "spirit" of 
Amateur Radio in using a licensed technology for its codec.

However, the opinion doesn't have a foundation in fact.    As has been 
pointed out, there's nothing in the history of Ham radio, nothing in 
current practices, nor anything in Amateur Radio regulations or law that 
precludes licensed IP from being used on the airwaves.  It happens in 
hardware all the time.   Modes?  I can think of a few priors:  G-Tor and 
Pactor II.  Not resounding successes, but they have a niche.

So what are we left with here?   It becomes an opinion based on nostalgia 
and mythos.    A nostalgia that most of us have no true grounding in given 
the fact that for the most part homebrewing and experimentation in Ham 
Radio mostly died with the end of WWII.  But the influx of cheap surplus 
transceivers and electronics fueled the growth of Ham Radio as a hobby and 
propelled it for the next 20 years.   And it really died when electronics 
got to the point where even a technically superior Ham could not produce a 
reasonable facsimile of a commercial Amateur Radio transceiver.   And 
that's been in the last 20 years.

I know that comment will upset a few of you, but we all became "appliance 
operators" the minute we stopped making our own vacuum tubes in the garage.

Secondly,  You have to look at the "Professional" side of Amateur 
Radio.   What do we bring to the table now for emergency 
communications?   And what will we bring to the table 5 years from 
now?   We need professional products built to commerical specs using recent 



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