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Comment Re:That wasn't the question (Score 3, Interesting) 461

Why would the driver have to consent? The drive for "public security" has already diminished our rights to the point that as soon as the officer states he 'smelled weed', he has all the consent he needs. Maybe you need to take a look at reality and hopefully begin to understand the severe slope we're already sliding down. What's next? Paying kids with new uniforms to turn in their parents for cussing?

Comment The question is, "What is Amateur Radio" (Score 2) 371

Are we an Emergency Service? No - we are not. That is what part 90 is for.

We are hobbyist, enthusiasts that practice the radio art and sciences. As such, we develop the skills and methods to make things work, when all else fails.

We fill in, when asked, when established systems fail. We are not a "First Responder" that jumps into any and every situation with our "magic" HTs to save the day.

If you want to be part of an EmComm organization, join one - they have their own radio service under part 90 rules. They use encryption there - and it works well.

Thankfully, the public communications community has noticed when things have gone bad and we've stepped in to help. They've evolved their systems to be more robust and survive events. No, they're not perfect and there will be opportunity to help out in the future. But, we provide that help out of civic duty. Not as an EmComm service.

Allowing encryption on the Amateur Bands will further dilute the separation between our hobbyest, experimental service and established EmComm services. When those EmComm service start asking for more bandwidth to support their growth - where do you think they're going to look? If we're already providing EmComm services - predeployed, dedicated, secure encrypted, agency specific communications - what shouldn't they have our bands?

Submission + - FDA: Software Failure Behind 24% Of Medical Device Recalls (

chicksdaddy writes: "Software failures were behind 24 percent of all the medical device recalls in 2011, according to data from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA's) Office of Science and Engineering Laboratories (OSEL).
The absence of solid architecture and "principled engineering practices" in software development affects a wide range of medical devices, with potentially life-threatening consequences, the FDA warned. In response, FDA told Threatpost that it is developing tools to disassemble and test medical device software and locate security problems and weak design."


Submission + - NASA wants to seel its cool, high-tech stuff, fast (

coondoggie writes: "Looking to address harsh criticism from its own inspector general that has been painfully slow in getting important technologies out of the lab and into commercial applications, NASA today said it has opened a revamped Technology Transfer Portal which aims to streamline the way the space agency handles that business."

Comment APRS (Score 1) 296

One method - and kinda fun too - get your Technician class ham license and setup an APRS tracker. Hams have been doing this since when, 1998 or so. It's pretty much 'ancient' tech. But robust as all get-out. Not only can you track your scooter - but you can do other things too. Better part? Once you've got it up and running - no air charges.

Comment Part 90 vs Part 97 (Score 1) 376

Amateur Radio is a Communications "Hobby". An Avocation. Not a service you can subscribe to.

You have to learn how things work, set up your rig(s), antennas and accessories, learn their strengths and weaknesses, learn what modes and bands do what and why, develop your own skills and equipment, practice then - learn more, explore and understand what and how to accomplish your goals and then, "When all else fails", you can be a real asset to user agencies and even yourself. An trained, experienced RF communicator.

But, to just go get a license and expect to be able to meet emergency needs - and worse, set yourself up as such - that's a huge stretch. Yes, there are anecdotes where a few 'n00bs' have helped - but those are the exceptions and even then, they'd have been able to offer more if their foundation was deeper and broader.

That's possibly an insight into why some (of us) hams are so "anti-emergency" appearing in their perspective. If you want an "emergency" radio - go buy one. If you want to equip your emergency service with a 'back up' system. Don't use Amateur Radio - get a backup system.

It's because hams have learned the radio art, when an emergency presents, they can meet the needs "when all else fails". But you can't be proficient in the art just because you have a license. That's just the beginning. But what a journey it is!!

Comment Re:Smart Meters, not Internet Service was Behind B (Score 1) 97

Jerry, with such an obvious "spin" statement, I have to wonder which one of the FCC's pet BPL investors you represent or work for?

From day one of this fiasco, BPL was touted as the great "last mile" technology for rural America. It was to make easy, fast and reliable Internet connectivity available to Ma and Pa Kettle. Now, that the FCC has been proven to be complicit in foisting this ineffective and flawed technology (that has been similarly abandoned by almost every other country that's tried it) on a gullible America, you have the gall to suggest "They didn't really mean that"???

Fess up - who's signing your checks? Or are you just blind to the facts due to sight-line obstruction?

The one good thing? Rule of Law still prevails in the US - even if it takes smashing it over the heads of those that are tasked to enforce it.

Comment Re:What about the standard way ? (Score 1) 405

Nothing personal stim - but just asking this question shows an abysmal lack of understanding.(Maybe I missed the attendant sarcasm?)

AV software is a panacea, a vaporous comfort blanket that serves to only make the sellers money. Read the earlier comments to gain some insight into why this is so.

Then, find a local PC geek - someone who works this arena for a living, not your cousin's gamer kid - ask them to explain to you how many systems they've seen with current, up to date and active AV software from reputable vendors that have been borked beyond use by ignorant user actions.

Folks that think they're 'clean' just because their AV software dejur says they're clean are a mal-code authors wet dream.

Comment Re:Ham Radio Community is ROFLIAO (Score 1) 330

No Kidding!!

And a "tech news" site gets all wet over this? Talk about being out of step with current technologies. Real shame when a 'tech news' site looses touch with the foundations of technology. This really does make /. look - well, rather quaint.

My son was making contacts via satellite and chatting with the ISS crew years.ago. He was 8 then. Maybe I should've submitted that to /. Who thinks it would've made front page then?

This is "Entry Level" stuff for most any ham that can breathe and talk at the same time.

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