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Comment Re:No one with a clue thought it would be illegal (Score 2) 85

The issue is that certain changes - increasing your transmission power - ARE illegal and have long been illegal. The FCC is looking at putting out rules to prevent that from being possible, or at least make it much more difficult.

There are a few cases where increasing your power; as well as operating "out of band" are legal; well..actually....there is one. You can operate a 802.11 wifi device under Part 97 (amatuer radio) if you have an amateur radio license and comply with the other rules of what you can and can't use Part 97 for. There are hams using off-the-shelf WiFi with modified firmware to operate under PArt 97 rules to create wireless networks that can be used by emergency services or for other authorized Part 97 services. One example is streaming video of say...the finish line of a marathon where hams are providing some logistical services. VOIP has also been played around.

Again, you have to have a ham license to operate in this fashion; and you cannot provide a public internet connection over it; or at the very least; it must be extremely limited.

Comment Re:Revenue, revenue, revenue.. (Score 1) 242 revenue is actually on the decline. Both cable and local broadcasters collect fees per subscriber for programming. I'm pretty sure the shift has gone more toward retransmission fees than advertisements. If advertising was making that much of a dent; you wouldn't have skyrocketing fees for channels. Just take a look at The Weather Channel...which priced itself right off Verizon. Why, just last month there was a dispute between Dish Network and the local CBS broadcaster over retranmission fees; resulting in a loss of CBS for this market to Dish subscribers.

Comment Re:What about volume? (Score 1) 242

There are guidelines set by the FCC that broadcast and cable has to follow regarding this. The problem is it states only guidelines for "average" volume. Still, most TV's I've used in the last decade include some kind of dynamic compression system; at least the good ones.

Comment Re:CCTV China (Score 1) 294

I think we have two CCTV channels broadcast over-the-air. I've never seriously watched them becuase they're part of a 5-channel multiplex and look really bad.

That same broadcaster also carries NHK World, Bon, RT, France24 News, TeleSUR, Ukraine Today, and VTC10. It's actually 12 digital channels carried by two broadcasters.

Comment Re:Classical, to country, to pop, to propaganda? (Score 1) 294

The FCC does not license stations for content; they merely license the station. So there is no concept of a station being "set-up" for anything here; the license is literally just that, the license to operate.

It has always been that way though. A radio station can flip it's format/affiliation at any time without having to change license. Sometimes when a station "reinvents" itself; they request new call letters...but that still isn't tied to anything like what they're set-up for.

The FCC licenses broadcast facilities and assigns frequencies; that's it. IF they started to limit the content by a license...there would be a lot of people getting angry. Also, saying it's about money is false. Some broadcast stations do solely broker time; but there's nothing that says a radio station *has* to make money. I know of one station that's currently making no's also looking for a buyer. There are also restrictions on how time can be brokered.

At the same time, most people over here think the BBC is actually the government entity that controls broadcast; and a lot of people feel all your media is actually government-run. I mean, I know it's not...I did take some time to study the broadcasting system over there (the lack of call letters bothers me).

Comment Re:In Virginia.... (Score 1) 151

That's strange. I find it funny you have an unreliable feed; Novec seriously tries to keep everyone up and running for as long as possible. They're probably the only provider around who...if they need to put up more lines, gets little to no opposition from people. But I don't think the feed for AMZ will benefit you, at all. That's all Dominion stuff. I'm not sure how much power Novec buys from Dominion though; they do get a large chunk of energy from the South Anna Nuclear Plant.

Comment Re:In Virginia.... (Score 1) 151

Wait...which county do you live in? Who's your service provider?

In the section of PWC they're talking about, with the exception of the Haymarket area; it's Novec territory. So a Dominion HV line wouldn't benefit them. Haymarket will get some benefit from this project as they're putting in a new substation there and I'm 99% sure that's Dominion territory. But the biggest opposition has been from he residents in Novec territory; who naturally wouldn't get any benefit from this. If the new data-center was located in Novec territory; I doubt anyone would protest Novec putting up a new HV feed...largely because they would benefit from it.

I don't live at that end of the county, so that's their fight; I don't care one way or another. I'm also the kind of guy who, if he had the money; would put up a 75ft radio tower in his back yard. If I could get the special use permit; and had the money; I'd go 200ft.

Comment In Virginia.... (Score 3, Informative) 151

the people largely don't want *another* HV power feed running through thier area/property; at least not one that exists solely for commercial use. This issue is actually somewhat local to me; and the residents of the area have always been at odd with "big power"...simply because of the greed. What starts as a right-of-way for one power line soon becomes a single right of way for multiple lines; the property owners haven't been reimbursed for the now extra stuff on their property. Plus, as much as I'm not a person who says no to towers or utility lines...the situation they've got going on over there is getting pretty bad.

The biggest issue is it's going in to serve *one* customer; it has no overall benefit to the residents of the area; and this is after a power company already abusing exsiting contracts and promises. They've seen zero benefit from the result of this growth.

I can tell you this though; if the local electric co-op wanted to put the line in; there'd be almost no opposition. The co-op would also fairly compensate everyone while engineering the line to serve the demands of the customer; but as well as all the customers running along this new line.

But it's basically someone coming up to you "I'm putting a fence across your property so I can make more money. It doesn't benefit you in any way...and I will essentially have the land on the other side of the fence. I'm not going to pay you for it either." There's no middle ground, there's no working with them; it's "this is what we're putting in, you will have no input in to how it looks and we're not even going to compensate the piece of property we're over..and we'll probably force you to maintain the property around our equipment as well."

Comment Re:GROL+Radar is wrong license (Score 1) 173

He may have been blowing it a bit out of proportion; there is a license that is just under the GROL in terms of moving up the ladder..or he may have just said he was "building up" to the GROL. I wasn't fully fueled with coffee when I started posting this morning and the bands were doing really I was mostly radioing and typing stuff in to the computer.

Comment Re:GROL+Radar is wrong license (Score 1) 173

Getting a professional engineer requires a sponsor, engineering degree and/or equivalent work experience. It also has a large amount of non-electrical and non-RF learning required. It's completely overkill for something like this. Why not just require an extra class HAM license, or a new license based on those requirements? HAMs are already licensed to build their own radio equipment and broadcast up to 1500 watts on a number of bands. I realize those bands aren't right next to weather radars, but malfunctioning equipment could make them so. And unregulated bands are already open to be used by HAMs anyway.

For starters, you don't need an engineering degree to get GROL, I don't think you need one to get the Radar part. It's the same as the amateur service; you pass the exams, pay the fee, and you can get your license. The testing and licensing fees tend to be the killer and part of the reason the people who have these are engineers. A ham license, for example, will cost you about $15 depending where you test..that's paid at exam time and covers up to all three exams in one sitting. A friend of mine just got the license that's a pre-requestite for GROL, it wasn't cheap...but he's working on his GROL.

As far as ham bands next to weather might be surprised. I don't have exact frequencies; but I know this much. L-Band radar operates in a range of 1-2GHZ, there's amateur allocation at 1240mhz - 1300mhz. S-Band operates between 2 and 4 ghz. Amatuer radio has allocations at 2300-2310, 2390-2450, and 3300 - 3500. In fact, our 2.4 assignment is over the first 6 or 7 channels of the unlicensed wifi spectrum. There's a local group here that's using off-the-shelf routers running dd-wrt to build a non-internet connected mesh wifi network for use during emergencies or public events. We're allowed to go a bit lower in frequency and output more power; we're just not allowed to use it for general internet access.X-Band radar operates at 8 - 12 ghz; with an amateur allocation at 10.0 - 10.5ghz. The highest band radar, K-Band, operates 12-18 ghz and 27-40ghz (split due to absorption line in water vapor); amateur actually doens't have any allocations around there. After 10.5ghz, we don't get anything till 24ghz.

So actually, there are ham bands next to weather radar; but amateurs generally make sure they're not interfering. Most ham communities have a relationship with the people that run weather radar; so any interference issues are usually worked out without the need of getting the FCC involved; or don't happen at all if a ham is checking the output of his stuff.

But having a ham license does not give you open access to "unregulated bands"; you may be thinking about the space above 275ghz; which is basically unallocated and the FCC has given it to hams. But we don't get any special privleges outside our bands. If I'm operating in say the FRS band; I have to abide by the same part 15 regulations everyone else does.

But we are allowed to operate up to 1.5kW PEP *output* on everything except the 60 and 30 meter bands...and that means PEP output from your does not count any "gain" your antenna may have. With a good yagi, someone putting out 1.5kW could have an ERP of well over 10kW. In fact, only the 60 meter band is really strict saying your efective radiated output can only be 100W PEP; the 30 meter band sets a 200 watt PEP limit but I don't think that counts antenna gain.

Comment Re:GROL+Radar is wrong license (Score 1) 173

It used to be years ago you needed GROL for a lot of stuff; if you wanted to DJ in a radio station you needed a GROL license. But that's not the case anymore, so the GROL is largely thought of as a license to adjust, maintain, or repair FCC licensed radiotelephone transmitters. A lot of people don't know that, and think if you want to be even a radio DJ; that you have to go to school and get the license. Of course, you don't actually need to attend a class or have an engineering degree to get a GROL; you just have to pass the test and pay the fees. That is of course transmitters in specific bands. Amateur operators are also licensed to adjust, maintain, repair, or build transmitters for Part 97 operation; in fact, we're allowed to modify devices (even part 15) for operation in the amateur service. Amatuer radio has a *long* history of either building it's own stuff; or modifying existing radios. Hell...back in the old days...most VHF FM installations were converted over from decomissioned commercial service radios. It wasn't uncommon in the 70's...or even today; to find someone using a old commercial/public-service radio on the amateur bands.

Comment 2 years? (Score 1) 161

It seems to me if it's been going on for 2 years, Experian hasn't been doing the job to secure our data. They should be facing some criminal charges or fines over this. Better yet; they should shut down. This is very gross incompetence. What's the two years going to do? "Oh, someone is using your data. LOL. Sorry." That's pretty much all they're going to do. They're not going to help solve a problem they are responsible for. They need to be held responsible; by someone. 2 days I could understand; 2 years is just plain incompetence.

"There are things that are so serious that you can only joke about them" - Heisenberg