[aprssig] OT: Yaesu to release digital amateur radio gear

Gregg Wonderly gregg at wonderly.org
Mon Jan 9 14:42:06 CST 2012

On 1/9/2012 2:04 PM, Amateur Radio WB8NUT wrote:
> From my travels around the midwest and the southeast, most of the voice 
> activity is on D-Star. Almost impossible to get a conversation on FM repeaters 
> in many cities. Not sure why people at Dayton are buying so many FM handhelds. 
> What do they do with them if they are not going to talk? Why have a ham 
> license if they are not going to talk? Frankly I don't understand it.
> Then again, with D-Star and the repeater interconnects, I can get a 
> conversation with someone from just about anywhere in the world about any time 
> of day.

This is an important point.  You can talk to anyone, from anywhere that D-Star 
is available by using the call-sign routing features.  ICOM demanded that all of 
the repeaters that they gave away, be internet connected, to get the 
reimbursement.  With the digital data services available, as well, for example, 
a D-Star equipped balloon, with a "GPS based" frequency control, could know what 
frequency to use for a digital data stream, and send pictures, and telemetry 
back to the owners "command station" quite readily.

Yes, we already have technologies that do this, but with D-Star and other 
"digital networking" capable standards, you only need one mode to do that with.  
Building a D-star data receiver, is a pretty low cost business by just using the 
examples visible on the web.  There are lots of things that digital comms 
enable.  But, until we can have "a" standard of sorts, people are going to "not 
get it" in terms of purchase or understanding, because it all looks to be made 
of "unobtanium".

Gregg Wonderly

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