Review of the HamTestOnline (HTO) Ham Radio Exam Courses

HamTestOnline (HTO) helps you learn more than required to earn your licenses in less time than every other method. HTO does it by maximizing your learning. That unique feature defines its super-power differentiating itself from every other approach.

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How To Get A Vanity Ham Radio Call-sign

  • Read this and this for an overview with relevant links
  • Read this to try to come up with a call-sign that sticks to the rules (coffee may be required)
  • Search for the call sign you want. If you find it already taken you can search for variations you might like. When you submit your application you can submit up to twenty-five new call-signs in order of priority for the administrators to use if your first choice is not available.
  • As of 2017-02-12 the application is free (a fee of zero dollars)
  • Go back here to walk through the electronic process of applying and wait for your application to start being processed
  • Check here to see how the application is proceeding
    • Check here for call-signs that are predicted to be approved
  • Find your new call-sign in the license search
  • Wait for your official paperwork confirming your new call sign
  • Enjoy your new vanity call-sign

Review of the The ARRL Ham Radio License Manual

The material follows a “flow of consciousness” writing style that is informal and wordy instead of concise and to the point, at times making the reading tedious. The order of topics covered mirrors the order of topics in the exam itself, instead of following the logical order, at times leaving the reader confused and frustrated. Because my “non-techie” friends don’t have the background they are probably unwilling to deal with it. My “techie” friends might be willing to put up with it but I wasn’t. So for both of them I would cautiously recommend it with the caveat that they need to be open to reading the book more than a few times, put up with its deficits and willing to take the exam as many times as required to pass. Another way to think about it is that you are getting a great deal if your time has no value.

Easily Program Your Amateur Radio

It is more fun to use a handheld ham radio when you can tell it to scan different frequencies and stop there if it hears anyone. Whatever your location there are places to hang out on certain frequencies. For example here are some of them around Milwaukee Wisconsin. The trouble is that wherever you go those places will change and it is hassle to program your handheld to know about them. Fortunately it can be done easily:

CHIRP makes it easy to program your handheld radios.

Setting Up a Line6 POD XT on Windows 7

Whether not you play guitar, or do custom software development, you ought to pay homage and respect to Line6 for supporting their gear for years and years after the release date with excellent software drivers and tools. Surely their excellent long-term gear support and quality eats into their profits a bit, but they create life-own Line6 fans with nearly every purchase.

My reason for posting here is that setting up my old POD XT on Windows 7 required accepting just a couple of oddities, and then everything worked fine, and I can’t be the only one facing this. Here is how I did it in order.

Ran [Line 6 Drivers v4.2.7.1 Installer].exe with PODxt support. This was a battle because the POD wasn’t getting detected. Finally I remembered that I had always used the front USB port, not the back. Plugged it in there and the installer detected it just fine. This was major blocker until I remembered that (my fault).

Ran [Line 6 License Manager v1.07 Installer].exe.

Ran [Line 6 Monkey v1.65 Installer].exe.

Ran [Line 6 Edit v3.06.0 Installer].exe.

At my preference, I reinstalled the firmware and patches, because I forgot what was even on there and why.

Bought the Bass Expansion pack. Downloaded the PDFs for it to make sense of what is on there. Line6 Money will install the plugin and that worked flawlessly. The only oddities were two things. The first was that the new amp models for the bass didn’t show up. Literally amps #79 to #104 were gone. Rebooting the POD fixed this. The second was that in Line6 Edit, when you go to edit the amps, the tool complains that I don’t have support for those amps. Not sure what to do but things seem to work fine.

That is my story.

DEBS 2010

Looks pretty fun!

Via the homepage:

The 4th ACM International Conference on Distributed Event-Based Systems (DEBS) builds on the success of first three editions from 2007. DEBS Conference success is rooted in five editions of the DEBS workshops held from 2002 to 2006 in companion with major conferences such as ICDCS, ICSE, and SIGMOD/PODS. The conference has received full ACM sponsorship since 2009.

The objectives of the DEBS Conference are to provide a forum dedicated to the dissemination of original research, the discussion of practical insights, and the reporting on relevant experience relating to event-based computing that was previously scattered across several scientific and professional communities. The conference also aims at providing a forum for academia and industry to exchange ideas, for example, through industry papers and demo papers.

Via caml-list:


Event-based systems are rapidly gaining importance in many application
domains ranging from real time monitoring systems in production, logistics
and networking to complex event processing in finance and security. The
event based paradigm has gathered momentum as witnessed by current efforts
in areas including event-driven architectures, complex event processing,
business process management and modelling, Grid computing, Web services
notifications, information dissemination, event stream processing, and
message-oriented middleware. The various communities dealing with event
based systems have made progress in different aspects of the problem. The
DEBS conference attempts to bring together researchers and practitioners
active in the various subcommunities to share their views and reach a
common understanding.

The scope of the conference covers all topics relevant to event-based
computing ranging from those discussed in related disciplines (e.g.,
coordination, software engineering, peer-to-peer systems, Grid computing,
and streaming databases), over domain-specific topics of event-based
computing (e.g., workflow management systems, mobile computing, pervasive
and ubiquitous computing, sensor networks, user interfaces, component
integration, Web services, and embedded systems), to enterprise related
topics (e.g., complex event detection, enterprise application integration,
real time enterprises, and Web services notifications).

The topics addressed by the conference include (but are not limited to):

Models, Architectures and Paradigms
- Event-driven architectures
- Basic interaction models
- Event algebras, event schemas and type systems
- Languages for event correlation and patterns, streaming and continuous
  queries, data fusion
- Models for static and dynamic environments
- Complex event processing
- Design and programming methodologies
- Event-based business process management and modeling
- Experimental methodologies
- Performance modeling and prediction based on analytic approaches

Middleware Infrastructures for Event-Based Computing
- Federated event-based systems
- Middleware for actuator and sensor networks
- Algorithms and protocols
- Event dissemination based on p2p systems
- Context and location awareness
- Fault-tolerance, reliability, availability, and recovery
- Security issues
- (Self-)Management
- Mobility and resource constrained device support
- Streaming queries, transformations, or correlation engines

Applications, Experiences, and Requirements
- Use cases and applications of event-based systems
- Real-world application deployments using event-based middleware
- Domain-specific deployments of event-based systems
- Real-world data characterising event-based applications
- Benchmarks, performance evaluations, and testbeds
- Application requirements for next-generation event-based solutions
- Relation to other architectures
- Enterprise application integration
- Event-driven business process management
- Information logistics
- Seamless integration of event-based mechanisms into middleware