Wormhole Newsletter February 2017

February 2017

Hello Worms
We are meeting at the Minnreg building this month just to confuse everyone. It is located at 6340 126th Ave N. That is immediately south of the Honeywell complex at Elmerton and US19. 126th runs between US19 access road and 66th St. The bird show is scheduled for Sunday so there should be no crowd to confuse us. Come in through the chain link gate on the southwest side of the building. The forcast is partly cloudy with a high of 73. Sounds like a great day for the meeting. Bring your folding chair is you have one.

I have been spending lots of time in the Tampa EOC lately. Six days for the college football playoff, then a full day for the Gasparilla Children”s parade, then the next day we were called in for the sever weather and then last Saturday for the Gasparilla Invasion and Parade. All was very quiet even boring which is perfect for emergency management.

The Wormhole has decided to put our 220 repeater back on the air. We have the repeater itself along with an amplifier and antenna but do not have a duplexer. If you have or know someone who has a set of 220 cans let us know. You can tell us at a meeting or send me an email. We will be looking for a set at the Orlando hamfest a week after this meeting.

We have a few repeater changes in the area. The Kings Point ARC sent our a letter itemizing the changes in their repeater. I have copied the letter below.
Talk-in is on the Wormhole repeater and we will be monitoring the simplex call frequency, 146.52.

 

*14 THINGS GOOGLE KNOWS ABOUT YOU*

InfoWorld By JR Raphael
Google may know more about me than I know about myself.

I’m not just saying that, either: I recently started poking around in Google’s personal data repositories and realized that, between my wide-reaching use of the company’s services and my own brain’s inability to remember anything for more than seven seconds, Google may actually have the upper hand when it comes to knowledge about my life.

From face-tagged photos of my past adventures (what year did I go to Nashville, again—and who went with me to that Eddie Vedder show?) to the minute-by-minute play-by-play of my not-so-adventuresome days (wait, you mean I really only left the house once last Wednesday—and just to get a freakin’ sandwich?!), Google’s got all sorts of goods on me. Heck, even my hopes and dreams (which may or may not involve sandwiches) are probably catalogued somewhere in its systems.

And the data itself is only half the story: Google also compiles oodles of stats—stats that, for better and for worse, shed light onto the tech-connected habits of our modern lives. How many emails have you actually sent over the years, for instance, and how many thousands of webpages have you pulled up in your browser? It really is enlightening, among other things, to see your actions broken down so precisely.

Before you freak out, though, remember: The only way anyone else could get at any of this info would be if they were to gain access to your Google account—something two-factor authentication and good mobile security hygiene make highly unlikely.

And remember, too, that all this data collection is completely optional—and very much a tradeoff: By agreeing to let Google store and use your data, you’re getting access to an ever-expanding array of futuristic features at no monetary cost. But the decision is ultimately in your hands. To learn more about how Google uses specific types of data and how you can opt out of any or all areas of collection, see the ”Opting out and taking control” section at the end of this story.

All of that being said, here are some of the more amusing—and maybe slightly surprising—things you might find about yourself by prodding the right parts of Google’s noggin. How many of these items actually apply to you depends on which Google services you use and how exactly you use them. To wit: Android users who take advantage of built-in features such as voice commands, location history and photo backups will almost certainly have more data tracked by Google than non-Android users. But anyone who regularly uses Gmail, Google search, Google Maps, YouTube, Chrome and/or other Google services from any mobile device or computer will likely find at least some interesting nuggets from the following list:

1. A full history of your voice commands with any Google product—including actual audio recordings
2. An objective breakdown of your real BFFs (according to Google)
3. How much stuff Chrome has saved about you
4. How many Gmail conversations you’ve had
5. A full history of everywhere you’ve ever been
6. A full list of everything you’ve done from any Android device
7. A comprehensive collection of every site you’ve visited in Chrome—on any device
8. Exactly how many Google searches you’ve made this month
9. A running count of how many Android devices you’ve had connected to your account over the years
10. A running count of how many Android apps you’ve ever installed
11. Some stats on your invite-accepting habits
12. How many images you’ve stored with Google Photos
13. A full list of all your activity in the Google Play Store
14. How many YouTube videos you’ve watched this month

For the complete explanation of the above items go to the original article at http://www.infoworld.com/article/3150925/privacy/14-eyebrow-raising-things-google-knows-about-you.html

 

Opting out and taking control

Want to turn off specific types of data collection or delete existing info from your Google account history? The Google privacy site is the best place to start; there, Google provides detailed information about how each type of data is used along with links to opt out of any specific areas. You can also visit Google’s Activity controls page for a simple single-page list of on-off toggles.

If you’re looking to clean up your history for anything that Google has been tracking, head to the My Activity site. You can delete any individual item right then and there by clicking the three-dot icon in its upper-right corner and choosing Delete, or click the “Delete activity by” link in the left column for an easy way to erase info based on date and/or product.

Data collection controls can be also found on an Android device by opening the main system settings and selecting Google (or, if you’re on an older device, looking for the standalone Google Settings app) and then tapping “Personal info & privacy.”

 

* NOISE FLOOR REPORT DOES NOT INSPIRE CONFIDENCE*

By Dan Romanchik, KB6NU

Last June, the FCC’s Technical Advisory Committee asked licensed and unlicensed users of the electromagnetic spectrum to answer some questions about the noise they were experiencing and whether or not it was affecting their services. Specifically, they asked:

  * Is there a noise floor problem?
  * Where does the problem exist? Spectrally? Spatially? Temporally?
  * Is there quantitative evidence of the overall increase in the total integrated noise floor across various segments of the radio frequency spectrum?
  * How should a noise study be performed?

Well, the results are in, and Radio World recently published a summary of the responses that the FCC received (http://www.radioworld.com/business-and-law/0009/noise-floor-where-do-we-go-from-here/338242). The FCC received 93 replies from 73 (great number, eh?) different people or organizations, including:

  * 23 companies/industry organizations
  * 39 RF professionals (broadcast and wireless)
  * 31 licensed radio amateurs
  * 9 responders did not reply to the questions asked

Respondents included the ARRL, the Society of Broadcast Engineers, the National Association of Broadcasters, the National Public Safety Telecommunications Council, ATT, and the National Electrical Manufacturers Association. I found especially interesting comments from the Society of Broadcast Engineers. They include:

  * Increased cooperation is needed between manufacturers of Part 15 devices and users of radio spectrum to identify noise sources and take appropriate remedial action.
  * Radiated emission limits below 30 MHz in the FCC Part 15 rules for unintentional emitters should be enacted. There are presently no radiated emission limits below 30 MHz for most unintentional emitters.
  * Reduced Part 15 limits for LED lights should be enacted to be harmonized with the Part 18 lower limits for fluorescent bulbs.
  * Better labeling on packaging for Part 18 fluorescent bulbs and ballasts to better inform consumers of potential interference to radio, TV and cellphone reception in the residential environment.
  * Specific radiated and/or conducted emission limits for incidental emitters, such as motors or power lines, should be enacted.
  * Conducted emission limits on pulse-width motor controllers used in appliances should be enacted.
  * Substantially increase the visibility of enforcement in power line interference cases.
Other organizations made similar comments.

While the report is encouraging, it won’t mean a thing if no action is taken on these issues. Given that the FCC is cutting back on its field offices, and our president-elect has said that he plans to reduce the number of governmental regulations, I’m not optimistic that we’ll see the noise situation get better before it gets worse. What do you all think?

——————————–

When he’s not battling the noise floor at his QTH, Dan blogs about amateur radio at KB6NU.Com, writes the “No Nonsense” amateur radio study guides and teaches ham classes. You can contact him by e-mailing cwgeek@kb6nu.com.

 

*OHM’S LAW*

By Ralph WD0EJA

This law is a binding thread to understanding all electrical circuits. How is it used and how are the values related?  There are 3 values to this law. Voltage (E), current (I) and resistance (R).  In a circuit these three values will vary in respect to each other according to law. Ohm’s law. It is simply:

E = I X R

Notice, if I increases and R stays the same, then E has to increase. If R increase and I stays the same, then E has to increase. It’s the law.  One value can not change without the other two compensating per the formula. It’s the law.  If you know two of the values, you can determine the third value.  If you measure voltage and measure current, what will the resistance be?
  R = E
        I
You can see if I increases and E stays the same, then it would be due to R decreasing.  If E increases and I stays the same, it is due to R increasing.  If you measure voltage and measure the resistance, how much current will be going through the circuit?

I = E
     R

The same balance holds true here also. This part of the formula helps to prevent barbecuing your work. If you are working on a circuit, you normally know how much voltage you will apply. Before it is applied you may be able in most cases measure the resistance. This will tell you how much current will be going through the circuit. If the components or wires are for no more than .5 amp and the measurements calculate to be 10 amps, your going to send smoke signals. It’s the law.

This law will apply to basic house wiring to complex circuits. Incorporating another law will make Ohm’s law even more valuable. This is Watt’s law. For another time.

 73,
Ralph WD0EJA
isotronantennas.com

 

*LOST ITEM, USE DEVICE TRACKER?*

Tom’s guide by Don Reisinger Jan 2, 2017,

TrackR, a company best known for offering products that help you keep track of your gadgets, has unveiled two new devices in time for CES 2017.
First up is the new TrackR Pixel, a tiny item tracker measuring just 1.02 inches in diameter and about 0.2 inches thick. The Pixel is offered in nine colors and can be attached to everything from your keys to your gadgetry.

The TrackR Pixel and TrackR Wallet 2.0 are both available for preoder. The TrackR Pixel can be preordered now for $25 and will start shipping in the spring. The TrackR Wallet 2.0 is available on preorder for $30 and will ship in late Spring.

The TrackR Pixel is essentially the cheaper version of its TrackR Bravo, a similarly small device that can be attached to any number of products to let you know where they are. It also comes with an LED light so it can illuminate in the dark when you’re searching for your product.

In addition TrackR said that it’s offering a new version of its TrackR Wallet. The device, called the TrackR Wallet 2.0, is shared like a credit card and is just 2mm thick. It’s ideal for slipping into your wallet so you can find out where it might be if you misplaced it, or worse, someone came along and swiped it without your knowledge.

An important TrackR Wallet 2.0 feature is its removable battery, which means you could get some extras and pop them in to ensure your tracker doesn’t run out of juice when you need it most.

Both the TrackR Wallet 2.0 and the TrackR Pixel work with the company’s TrackR Atlas. The Atlas plugs into a wall outlet, works over Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, and runs over the cloud to help you create a floorplan of your home and determine where a product is hiding in rooms throughout the house. TrackR Atlas can also be used to set alerts for when an item leaves a room. It also works with Amazon’s Alexa and other Bluetooth devices, including other trackers.

The TrackR Atlas is available now for preorder. A single Atlas goes for $40 and will be available in March.

 

*KINGS POINT ARC OPEN LETTER ABOUT REPEATERS*

To All;
AS many of you know there have been several of us that have been putting some extra effort into the repeaters lately. So I want to let you know what is going on and what is the plans. There is a large amount of information here and will be happy to answer questions for anyone just send me an email or catch me at the club room.

Dstar:
1. The UHF Dstar has been repaired and is being shipped back to us. It will go back on the air as soon as it gets back.

2. We have a VHF repeater (147.2625 +600), that will go on the air this week. Just need to finish tuning the cavities for it.

Analog Repeaters:
1. Both repeaters have been replaced with commercial grade Motorola Quantar repeaters. Both repeaters have the ability of transmitting 110 watts each but we have turned them down and sending about 60 watts to the Antennas. We are not finished with the installations on these as there are some feedline and antenna issues we are working on. We have had confirmed handheld contacts from Big Bend Road, Gibsonton Road, and I have checked in from in my house in Ruskin. This should improve further as we finish the antenna systems.

2. P25 The UHF repeater is running in dual mode (Analog and P-25 digital), this means it will respond to either of these. I will finish the VHF upgrade this week, I had to get a replacement ship to complete it.

3. Relocation – We have obtained to 6-foot-tall racks to house our repeaters in. One is up at the towers and one is in the repeater room at the club house. These will make a much safer storage for the repeaters and they are a metal mesh so it will improve the resistance to EMI. The intent is to finish the antenna work at the towers and move the Analog VHF repeater up there.  This will provide better handheld coverage for the VHF as well as the UHF. This will provide more flexibility for Kings Point Residents as well as the Sun City residents and with the South County Cert expanding this will provide better coverage for them.

Plans
1. When the moves are complete we will have the analog repeaters up on the Towers apartments and will have preamplifier and additional filtering as required. The D-Star repeaters will be at the Club House as before, although we have upgraded the router for better protection and throughput.

2. Once these moves are stable, I will start the process of upgrading the D-Star gateway from G2 to G3. I must do some checking as this will require a 64-bit computer and I am not sure if the one we have will meet the requirements.

3. Cross-band linking on the analog computers (it is already available in Dstar). We will look into cross-banding the repeaters with the ability to manage the link remotely (using the touch tone pad on a hand held). In addition, we have been invited to join the P25 network in the area. Not sure if we want to do it or how hard it will be, but if we do, this could give worldwide connectivity.

4. We have been asked to change our Analog VHF repeater frequency (currently 147.09). We periodically interfere with TARC on 147.105, we changed PLs to make that better and it really did not. We hear and get interference from N1FL from Orlando periodically and I am sure we do the same to him. We have been given 145.45 -600 as the new VHF analog frequency. The intent is to make the frequency shift on 25 February 2016. This will give time if anyone needs to help to come in and we will help them put the new frequency in their radio for them.

Q: What is that noise? –  I have had some people asking me about the interference on the UHF repeater, or let me know that it sounds like the power supply is going bad as there is a hum on the repeater when it transmits.
A: When you are listening to the UHF and VHF KPARC repeaters with an Analog only radio, you could hear a Hiss (like white noise), a buzz or a hum. This is the P25 going over the air.  What you can do so you do not have to listen to it is to set your radio’s receive PL to 162.2 like you do for transmit.  Then your radio will only open the squelch when the analog side is transmitting. If you have a problem, please contact Dick or I to get you some assistance to set your memory for this.

Q: Where can I get the P25 Radios?
A: I have been buying them from eBay. If that is what you desire to do, please spend a few minutes with myself or Frank when he is in the radio room as there are many different versions and they may not work on ham frequencies.

Respectfully
Bill
N1CDO
Ph.  757-635-2195
Email n1cdobill@verizon.net

 


*CLUB MEETING*
This meeting at 11:00 Saturday morning at the Minnreg Building located at 6340 126th Ave N, Largo. Talk-in is on the Wormhole repeater system.  For those coming to the meeting who cannot hit the repeater we will be monitoring 146.520 simplex, the national calling frequency. We will keep an eye peeled for you. We will take advantage of the cooking facilities with an after-the-meeting Social and wormdog picnic.


*CLUB NETS*

Check in on the club net Thursdays at 1930.  442.625 + with a 146.2 tone or the 2M side at 146.850 – also with a tone of 146.2.  We are always looking for volunteers to be the net control operator.  Anyone interested, talk to one your club officers.


*LOCAL NETS*
MONDAY
1730 147.030 + Receiver sites and tone info http://www.qsl.net/wd4scd/
St Pete Yacht Club ARC St Petersburg
1830 147.060+ no tone St Pete ARC daily net St Petersburg
1900 144.210 USB CARS, vertical polarization Clearwater
1900 147.135 +146.2 Zephyrhills ARC Zephyrhills
2000 147.165+ 136.5 Brandon ARS from Brandon
2000 50.135 Pinellas ARK Pinellas County
2030 NI4CE system EAGLE Net, NTS traffic net, NI4CE system
2030 145.450 Pinellas ARK Pinellas County
TUESDAY
1830 147.060 no tone St Pete ARC daily net from St Petersburg
1900 50.200 USB 6M net Brandon ARS
1900 28.450 WCF section net Clearwater
1900 NI4CE system WCF Section VHF ARES NI4CE system
1930 145.170 & 442.4 both pl 156.7 Pinellas ACS net Clearwater
1930 444.900 +141.3 Sheriff’s Tactical ARC Tampa
2000 NI4CE system WCF Skywarn net NI4CE system
2000 147.105+ 146.2 Tampa ARC net from Tampa
2000 28.365 USB simplex Brandon ARS
2030 NI4CE system EAGLE Net, NTS traffic net NI4CE system
2100 28.465 USB 10/10 net from Orlando
WEDNESDAY
1830 147.060 no tone St Pete ARC daily net from St Petersburg
1930 52.020 simplex Suncoast 6’ers from St Petersburg
1930 NI4CE system WCF Section Digital Info Ne NI4CE system
2000 147.105 146.2 Greater Tampa CERT net from Tampa
2000 146.97- 146.2 Clearwater ARS from Clearwater
2030 NI4CE system EAGLE Net, NTS traffic net NI4CE system
2100 NI4CE system Tampa Bay Traders Net non-affiliated
THURSDAY
1800 146.52 simplex Hillsborough ARES/RACES North Tampa
1830 147.060 no tone St Pete ARC daily net from St Petersburg
1900 444.750 +146.2 Fusion net from Tampa
1930 146.850- & 442.625+ both pl 146.2 Wormhole from St Petersburg
1930 146.6385 -127.3 Lakeland ARC from Lakeland
1915 224.660- no tone St Pete ARC from St Petersburg
2030 NI4CE system EAGLE Net, NTS traffic net NI4CE system
FRIDAY
1830 147.060 no tone St Pete ARC daily net from St Petersburg
2000 147.360+ pl 127.3 METRO ARC Friday Net from St Petersburg
2030 NI4CE system EAGLE Net, NTS traffic net NI4CE system
SATURDAY
0830 3.911 (7.281 Alt.)+/- QRM WCF Section HF Net from Pinellas County
1830 147.060 no tone St Pete ARC daily net from St Petersburg
2030 NI4CE system EAGLE Net, NTS traffic net NI4CE system
SUNDAY
1830 147.060 no tone St Pete ARC daily net from St Petersburg
1930 NI4CE system WCF Section Net NI4CE system
2000 147.550 simplex 550 Simplex Net Pinellas County
2030 NI4CE system EAGLE Net, NTS traffic net NI4CE system
2100 144.210 USB Clearwater ARS vertical orientation


*FOR SALE/WANTED*

Anyone having something for sale or who might be looking for an item let me know.  I will not print phone numbers or email addresses unless specifically told to since this newsletter might end up on the web.  The exception is when I get the information off the web.  If you are a member of the Wormhole then you have all the information you need on a club roster and if you are not a member  .. why not?  OK, if you are not a member you can contact me at the email address at the end of this newsletter, I will give you the information to contact the person involved.

FOR SALE, 13 element, 14.5 ft 220 beam. Wormhole property, $20, contact Bill AG4QX or any other officer. Free to any Wormhole member or other club. Pickup at Bill’s house.


*HAMFESTS*
2017

February 10-12 Orlando Hamcation, Central Florida Fairgrounds, 4603 West Colonial Drive, Tickets $13 in advance, $15 at door. Talkin 146.4760 – no PL or D-Star 146.850 -, all the information at www.hamcation.com or call 407-841-0874

February 18 Brooksville Hamfest, Sand Hill Scout Reservation, 11210 Cortez Blvd., talk-In 146.715 – no tone, contact John Nejedlo WB4NOD, 813-838-5432, website is http://www.hcara.org/.
February 25 West Central Florida Section Technical Conference (3rd Annual TECHCON), Sarasota, Sarasota Red Cross, 2001 Cantu Court. Looking for presentations and displays. For info see http://www.arrlwcf.org/ or contact Darrell Davis KT4WX at kt4wx@arrl.net

May 27 WormFest 2017, Pinellas Park,  FREE,  Freedom Lake Park, 9990 46th St N, southeast corner of US 19 and 49th Street, 33782.  Park opens at sunrise, hamfest from 0800 till…  Talkin on 442.625 + or 146.850 – both with a tone of 146.2.  For a map and directions see http://www.TheWormholeSociety.org .


*OTHER EVENTS*
Mid January Frogman swim in Tampa Bay. http://www.tampabayfrogman.com/
Last full weekend January Winter Field Day, http://www.spar-hams.org/index.php
Late January Gasparilla celebration
March/April MS Walks
March/April Mass Casualty Exercises
Late April Southeastern VHF Society Conference, http://www.svhfs.org
Late April Walk For Babies (was March of Dimes)
Late April Florida QSO Party
Mid-May Annual Armed Forces Crossband Test
Mid May MS 150 bike ride http://bikeflc.nationalmssociety.org/site/TR?fr_id=28207&pg=entry
Mid-May Florida Hurricane Exercise
Late May Wormfest
Early June Museum Ships on the Air
Fourth weekend in June Field Day http://www.arrl.org/contests/announcements/fd/
July 3/4 Midnight Run in Largo http://www.kiwanismidnightrun.com/
August International Lighthouse/Lightship Week https://illw.net/
October, 3rd weekend JOTA, Scout Jamboree-on-the-AIR
Early December ALS bike ride in Walsingham Park
December, first full weekend Ride & Run With The Stars in Fort DeSoto Park
December, Second full weekend Tampa Bay Hamfest http://www.fgcarc.org/


*YOUR WORMHOLE OFFICERS*
Bill AG4QX is President and editor of this newsletter, Vice-President is Mike K4ZPE,  Treasurer is Jim KD4MZL, Paul KA4IOX is the Secretary, Dee N4GD is the Repeater Trustee and Neil W4NHL and Mike K4ZPE are our club webmasters.


*WORMHOLE REPEATERS*

442.625 +  PL 146.2
146.850 –  PL 146.2
The Wormhole repeaters are both now dual mode Yaesu DR-1X. FM analog as always and now Yaesu Fusion, a C4FM/FM digital mode. The repeater crew updated the software on May 3, 2016.
The Wormhole website is at: http://www.w4orm.org.
West Central Florida Section website:  http://www.arrlwcf.org/.
The ARRL website is at: http://www.arrl.org/
This newsletter is written for The Glorious Society of the Wormhole, an ARRL affiliated amateur radio club located around the Seminole section of Pinellas County Florida. Anyone wishing to be added or removed from The Glorious Society of the Wormhole mailings please write to me at the address below and thy will be done.
73,
Bill Williams
AG4QX
ag4qx AT arrl DOT net

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