Amateur Radio Is THE PERFECT Tech and Globally Relevant Hobby

How and Why Amateur Radio Is Amazingly Relevant Across Generations…

Amateur radio is THE only globally-diverse hobby/avocation that allows individuals to as much as they see-fit, explore myriad technologies inter-connected via radio-waves. This can be as basic as chatting with neighbors, around your local communities, throughout a region, state, nation, the globe, the ISS, satellites, the ISS… and even remotely control devices and objects, without many of the constraints of various pre-engineered kits or the Internet.

While amateur radio has been around for over a century and to some appears to be “ancient technology”, that perception is absent the VERY many people and technological advances we have enjoyed for decades that might not have existed, or come about as soon as necessary, if it were not for the literal ‘world’ of radio enthusiasts.

Amateur radio is well beyond a room of racks of large power-hogging equipment, but it can still be that for the sake of fundamental science and relevant history.

Amateur radio is much more than “old guys in their basements” spitting out Morse code transmissions to “work the world” – but how is that much different than younger folks using inexpensive hand-held radios talking to tiny Internet-connected/-dependent appliances to “work the world” from their basements?

Two things and a lot in-between seem very much in-common using different technologies.

In-between there are the daily routine and occassionally extreme very different applications of any/all radio technologies.

Cell phones and Wi-Fi are every bit as much radio and, well, radio. The science and physics are the same regardless. Without the actual science and physics neither would work. Nor would garage door openers, remote controls, battle bots, GPS mapping/driving assistance, etc. Radio is radio. No matter what ‘code’ someone writes to effect a result at a distant point, be it 10 feet or 10,000 miles – radio is radio.

Once we agree on the science, the discussion of who and how and what becomes a matter of applying objectivity to various subjective cases. Again, science, critical thinking and problem solving.

Amateur radio, it’s people or the opportunities and experience it has provided, is a tremendous lead-in to a world of analytical and problem-solving experiences – from the global environment to medical diagnosis and treatment. Data needs to be acquired and conveyed from Point A to Point B. Radio is all about data acquisition across various electro-magnetic spectrum – “DC-to-light”. Radio is all about data transfer from voice to complex images of photographic or other thermal or spectral definition.

For radio to work requires power/energy. Every imaginable power source and conveyance is involved from nuclear reactors making steam to rotate generator turbines to solar and even ‘RF’ coupling of energy from one device to another – contactless device charging. There are amazing challenges in amateur and associated radio technologies to effect the most distant and/or reliable information transfer with the least amount of expended energy.

It’s simply not possible to have or advance many technologies without some core element of what various radio technologies include.

Ah-mazingly engaging in amateur radio provides opportunity to explore and engage in any and all manner of signal-/data-acquisition, signal-/data-transfer, creation and analysis at both, any, all ends… without grants, college programs, commercial investment, complexies or many constraints.

Who among anyone, everyone, who wants to explore anything from batteries to satellite images of bio-mass, won’t find some aspect of radio in the critical path, and have a wholly limitless medium to share and collaborate?

Amateur radio may be the perfectly everything hobby! That’s ‘just’ the big-picture stuff absent exploring how amateur radio can parallel, augment and displace if necessary the various complexities of public safety communications burdens – from local storms, floods, fires, and earthquakes to other disasters globally.

Are you aware that local, regional and state communities/agencies have little or no provision for the community/health-and-welfare situation-awareness built-into their disaster response plans? Of course not – just call 9-1-1 and ask for water, shelter, food… NONE of that is included in your tax dollars – it comes from NGOs and amateur radio.

Little or none of the greater-good community services involve fancy, complex technologies, nor should they. Basic communication at a least-common-denominator level is essential for communities. That still needs resilient power and determined radio-coverage awareness. How does one learn about and effect that? Generally amateur radio – not FEMA, DHS, etc.

I dare say that many innovations, most-anything radio/remote, started and still leverages the basics of amateur radio one-way or the other. If you have global technical aspirations… amateur radio is a great avocation to engage and get a head start. Many college engineering programs encourage amateur radio as a way to be able to implement class/paper/graduation projects that could not otherwise be fulfilled by other more restrictive radio services.

Amateur has been and IS ‘IT’, the ONLY “IT’ for accessible radio/science experimentation.

Oh, and it’s a heck of a lot of fun for making new friends and having an amazing global “cloud-/open-source” wealth of resources…

Want to save the planet AND help your community? Consider how saving and exploring amateur radio is right there to help!

– 73 de Jim, No1PC

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