Amateur Radio

Amateur radio (also called ham radio) is the use of designated radio frequency spectrum for purposes of private recreation, non-commercial exchange of messages, wireless experimentation, self-training, and emergency communication. The term “amateur” is used to specify persons interested in radio technique solely with a personal aim and without pecuniary interest, and to differentiate it from commercial broadcasting, public safety (such as police and fire) or professional two-way radio services (such as taxis, etc).

Stolen from Wikipedia.

Member Erik N8MJK working the radios during Wasteland Weekend 2012. Photo by Mary De Longis.

Member Erik N8MJK working the radios during Wasteland Weekend 2012.
Photo by Mary De Longis.

To most young people, ham radio is some old guys in basements listening to people talk in Cuba. In reality, it’s a very diverse hobby. There are people who just use little handheld radios to talk to their buddies using local repeater stations. There are people who use modified WiFi-routers to send data back and forth. Some hams specialize in talking to people in other countries, others literally bounce signals off the moon.

For others, amateur radio knowledge is a way of preparing for the unexpected. During major disasters, natural or man made, normal lines of communication frequently fail. Most methods we use in our daily lives are very susceptible to failures in mains power or transmission lines. Amateur radio systems powered only by batteries, local generators or a car are able to open lines of communication with every corner of the globe, without any third party help.

If you are interested in learning more about amateur radio, please feel free to contact us via this website or visit us in person at Wasteland Weekend 2013. Just look for the giant antenna!

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