28 February 2012

I can't stand "HAM"

I saw the below image today on FB, It's an add for a "Ham radio social network!" You know what really bothers me, the phrase "ham radio".

Historically this phrase was first used as a pejorative by professional radiotelegraph operators to describe unskilled and incompetent amateur operators but today "Ham" radio is more commonly used then "Amateur" radio. For a lot of operators the phrase is embraced, and usually fits because many times good intentioned "Hams" are unskilled and incompetent operators, and the title "Ham" even matches their physical appearance.

20 February 2012

Forbes calles LA-RICS "Next Solyndra"

Here is a story that the mainstream media has largely ignored; a tale of cronyism, special interests, law-breaking, bureaucratic delays, union complaints, last-minute changes in the law solely designed so that Los Angeles could keep federal grant money, panicked spending of federal money, and ultimately more than $800 million of your tax dollars.

Like all tragedies, it holds a powerful lesson: massive Keynesian spending programs often fail to create jobs or grow the economy, but insider “experts” rarely fail to get their piece of the action.

Our story begins with a lofty and laudable goal. In bureaucratic argot, it is known as “interoperability.”

read more here...

17 February 2012

John and Ken suspended from KFI

So I have been wondering whether to post something on the suspension of John and Ken, and since KFI is a primary source for distributing emergency info I thought it may be apt. Oh yeah and this is also MY BLOG and I can post about whatever I want.

So J&K got suspended from their top rated evening drive show for making "insensitive and inappropriate" comments about the late Whitney Houston, referring to her as "The crack ho". Now I agree that that comment is insensitive and inappropriate, but isn't that John and Ken's shtick?

The reason I listen to John and Ken is the fact that they discuss current events in a non politically correct manner. They are blunt and many times offensive, I don't always agree with what they say but I am always entertained and informed, even when I think they are wrong.

I like many other regular KFI listeners are changing the dial until John and Ken are back on February 27th. KFI didn't stand by their men, so I'm not standing by them.

In the mean time I am listening to indie rock on KSPC 88.7 FM, old school hip hop on KDAY 93.5 FM, and getting my news and entertainment from the .450 repeater.

Redondo Beach Fire kill Rihanna for new kitchen

Ikea is looking to donate a new kitchen to a deserving fire station. Click here to vote so hopefully Station 1 can get back to saving lives instead of killing songs.

10 February 2012

Pasadena continues to deny access to police radio traffic

PASADENA - Nearly a month after the police department switched to a digitally encrypted radio signal, city leaders still have no plans to allow local media live access to police chatter, officials said.

Pasadena began employing the system on Jan. 7, switching from an analog radio signal to an encrypted signal that prevents journalists and hobbyists from monitoring the police signal.
On Friday, Pasadena police Lt. Phlunte Riddle said the department was unsure whether it could accommodate the media with digital scanners.

Riddle said the greatest concern remains officer safety.

"People who do bank robberies use scanners, and Radio Shack sells these things cheap," Riddle said.      

Read more from the Pasadena Start News

Join the discussion at SoCalScan

09 February 2012

Climb a tower > get naked > eat McDonalds

McDonald's hamburgers lure naked man off downtown tower

Police were able to lure a naked man who spent hours atop a downtown radio tower with McDonald's hamburgers.
The man climbed to the top of the tower Wednesday night. At one point, police sources said, he asked for hamburgers from McDonald's. Officials complied, and he agreed to come down after eating his meal.

08 February 2012

Radio Sound FX

Want an old school MODAT notification on your iPhone? Want to confuse or annoy people with spurious MDC bursts? Check out W2SJW's radio sounds page.


07 February 2012

How to scan a trunking network on Astro 25 radios

Cool technique to monitor frequencies of a trunking system, without affiliating, on a Motorola FPP Astro 25 radio. 

01 February 2012

Mighty Fine Junk hack

So I went by H.R.O. today and picked up an inexpensive MFJ duplexer  diplexer. It is designed to split 2M and 70cm, but will work to split any high band VHF from UHF 430 to 520.

The first thing I did was pull it apart. At $24 it's the cheapest diplexer I have found, so I figure it can't be too hard to DIY.

Inside you have what you would expect to find, a series of inductor coils and caps. The VHF side uses a 100nF cap the UHF side 47nF. Unfortunately my Fluke doesn't do mH so I'll have to measure the inductors some other time.