Feeds

back to article Radio hams tell Ofcom: Put that Wi-Fi mob back in their place

The UK's amateur radio operators have banded together to insist that Wi-Fi be properly confined to 2.4GHz, in response to Ofcom's suggestion that LTE be allowed to nestle up real close to other bands. Under the auspices of the Radio Society of Great Britain (RSGB), various ham radio groups have said that the 10MHz immediately …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.
Go

oh dear, you went the 'beard' route. ok, not all of us have facial hair and aged over 80.

Us clean-shaven young-buck radio types use amateur radio for talking, interfacing computers with data-modes, satellite comms, bouncing signals off the moon and back. Recently we're using Arduino and Raspberry Pi in our radio projects.

Still think ham radio is old fashioned?

I think El Reg should produce an article on the current state of Amateur Radio.

44
1
Anonymous Coward

Do hams have permission from GCHQ and NSA to be excluded from their activities?

'Cos that might, y'know like, be useful for some folks.

Allegerdly.

0
0
Silver badge

qrm

>not all of us have facial hair and aged over 80

Well, yes.

I'm bearded and barely over 60

2
0
Silver badge

Unix

Welcome to the beardy ham crew, from the beardy unix community. Watch out through the Windows lads will be here in a minute.

4
0
Bronze badge
Windows

Re: Unix

Its ok, we do old fasioned things to like drinking tea with your favourites biscuits (I won't mention my favourite as that will start a war)

1
0
Bronze badge
Unhappy

Re: Unix

*Fashioned

A bad thing is I am also to used to spell checkers correcting everything for me.

0
0
Silver badge

Re: Unix

Sounds like a job for the SPB. At least when they've finished chasing around trying to find where LOHAN ended up this time...

0
0

Re: Unix

Not sure if it counts, but there are a few of us beardy Windows lads as well.

1
0

Hang on...

Who was it El Reg turned to for its high altitude to ground data system when it sent up that brave little playmonaut? Oh yeah, some not very old and clean shaven hams.

10
0

Re: Hang on...

Was it Lester Haines? I for one would be interested in a "Current Overview of HAM for Dummies"...

1
0
Anonymous Coward

I too hate this stereotype associated with one of my hobbies. I am in my 30's now, I started Amateur Radio when I was 15 years old. Whilst I don't tend to use it much at the moment, I can say that without the examinations I passed to get my license, my knowledge of electronics, components, circuits, fault finding, building/repairing equipment would be significantly less.

Rolling forward to 2013, this knowledge is still used on an almost daily basis in my career in IT.

In fairness, I do have a beard but this is due to sheer laziness on my part and not a constant feature of my face.

3
0

The red bits of that graph ...

...look suspiciously like a pound sign.

Kerching!

5
0
Anonymous Coward

Well, if wifi isn't reliable then we'll just have to switch to HomePlugs instead!

5
6
Happy

Squared beard

Radio hams transmiting unix? The beard will be beyond all imagining.

1
0
Linux

Re: Squared beard

Uh huh

http://www.linuxdoc.org/HOWTO/AX25-HOWTO/index.html

(Yeh, ok I know its linux...)

1
0
Unhappy

Dont know why RSGB bothered

After the last time they responded to an OFCOM consultation exercise and got the right royal 'fuck off'.

0
0
Silver badge
Coat

Re: Dont know why RSGB bothered

Or rather the OFFUCK.

*ahem*

3
0
Silver badge
Devil

Ofcom

Not about managing spectrum or best use of it but purely about making money for Treasury and supporting Mobile operators rather than consumers or anyone else because they have the most money to spend.

A shame.

8
0
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: Ofcom

Perhaps it's media hype and spin pushing new services, but the mobile operators wouldn't exist and have the most money to spend without consumer demand.

And I suspect most rationale people would view 60,000,000 mobile phone users a better use of the spectrum than 600,000 (guess) radio users. Not suggesting its right, there absolutely needs space and protection for all users, but if it's about making best use of the available space, you know which number if users is going to win.

If only there was a worldwide standards body that could meet and agree on the use worldwide which would then benefit manufacturers (only need to make one product to meet world demand, reducing cost) and consumers (cheaper products that work everywhere). I don't know, perhaps it might be called the International Telecommunication Union?

0
1
Silver badge

Bah!

If they fill the spectrum with Cell Jibberjabber how will QUARMBY get out when martial law is declared?

Ooooohhhhh...

0
1

Who's more trust worthy on spectrum allocation issues?

The guy who dedicates his spare time to tinkering with radio kit, a significant fraction of which he may have built from scratch.

Or the other guy, in the £1000 suit, whos profit forecasts are based on the assumption he will get ofcom to give him exactly what he wants.

I fully expect ofcom to bend over for the phone companies as per usual. All in the "national interest" of course.

2
0
Anonymous Coward

Very specialist band

I wonder how many of us Amateurs actually use this band, I know I don't.

I suspect it's only a small handful. One way to find out would be to make it an NOV (Notice of Variation) band, and see how many licensees apply for one :)

If it turns out that fewer than 20 Amateurs in the whole country use the band, that would put things into perspective. Surely they can use other bands for their 'technical experiments' - or is one fewer band for contesting a massive loss for racking up those all-important competitive points?

0
1
Happy

Re: Very specialist band

I do for one

An easy to get equipment for microwave band, don't knock it until you've tried it?

you could have the same argument for 10mhz, 18mhz, 24mhz etc etc

2
1
Bronze badge

Whilst "The amateurs argue ... that LTE can be expected to generate interference" they also politely point out that LTe itself is likely to suffer from interference due to a number of space-to-earth downlinks - which will be very difficult and expensive to change...

2
0
Bronze badge

"the 2.4GHz band is the most utilised in the world"

Probably because so few bands are actually unlicensed and have had useful mass market equipment manufactured to make use of them. I expect in time for the 5GHz band (802.11a/n) to become similarly utilized.

0
0

Whatever

10-4 Rubber Duck, I got my ears on

Breaker breaker

Get a proper hobby

1
9
Anonymous Coward

Grr

Now now, the same "amateur radio guys" will be the only ones with working radios when Carrington part Deux strikes in late 2013.

Assuming that the Homeplug adaptors don't wipe everything out as a half million of them all try and figure out why there is no server 100 times an hour until the power goes out.

I did read somewhere that a sufficiently large solar flare would be useful for amateur radio in the short wave band, as a 1mW signal could bounce around the world via the soon-to-be-enhanced ionosphere.

Amateur radio mights seem like an esoteric hobby but its branching out into optics using Ebay sourced IR and Phlatlight LEDs and also ultra high frequency in the 22 GHz and higher bands.

AC/DC

4
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: Grr

ooh yes I forgot to mention light comms - an interesting project methinks.

0
0

phone?

So a few people have a hobby which could be replaced by using a phone and then allowing the majority to use wifi. Why is the country always run for the benefit of a minority rather than the majority?

0
8
Silver badge
Stop

Re: phone?

I think you missed the point - there's a substantial amount of use of the band other than voice communications. Hobbyists and commercial uses for short range comms.

It just so happens that it's the Hams who've raised this particular objection.

2
0
Anonymous Coward

come the day of the revolution and your mobile smartfone doesn't work anymore, stand by the gate!!

0
0
Anonymous Coward

"radio signals being bell shaped"

Yeah....right. Why do I think this article was written by someone who's never seen a Smith Chart or a spectrum analyser?

Now, perhaps, if it was describing the response of a raised-cosine filter...

1
0
Bronze badge

Hams are useless...

until the military finds out it can't even get it's own comms grid working. As happened recently in a large military exercise in the Netherlands. A load of hams had been invited to "play along" as being the "civilian aspect/backup". They had pretty much been told to sit in the corner, shut up and stay out of the way.

By the time the actual exercise started the army boys found out their network wasn't working and most of their shiny comms equipment was pretty much useless. The hams in the meantime had gotten their cosy little corner all setup, their radios working, a comms network pretty much set up and were happily chatting away with most other stations (the last few getting online soon after). Even managing to make contact with ground units the military had thought were unreachable or out of range. So hurridly the army had to use this mismash ham network to get their forces coordinated.

(Most of the exercise was then run through ham radios as the army system kept suffering mental breakdowns)

1
0
Anonymous Coward

If anyone is interested

The price for green (ie cheap) LEDs in the 20W and above range is getting pretty low now.

Got a few on Greedbay for something like $10 and they are good enough for basic Li-fi use.

The trick is to install a parallel resistor of size to critically damp the internal capacitance of such a large

diode array so the bandwidth increases.

See "RadCom" for more details...

AC/DC No DiSaSsEmBle

0
0
This topic is closed for new posts.