This is a free weekly news & information update from Courage Center Handiham System <http://handiham.org> . Please do not reply to this message. Use the contact information at the end, or simply email handiham@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx You can also listen to the content online: Listen to an MP3 audio stream: <http://www.handiham.org/audio/handiham.m3u> http://www.handiham.org/audio/handiham.m3u Download the 40 kbs MP3 audio to your portable player: http://www.handiham.org/audio/handiham.mp3 New! Download a higher quality audio at 64 kbs to your portable player: <http://handiham.org/audio/handiham64.mp3> http://handiham.org/audio/handiham64.mp3 Get this issue as an audio podcast: http://feeds.feedburner.com/handiham _____ Welcome to Handiham World! Pat with headset & microphone I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. We certainly had a wonderful time sharing the holiday with extended family. With the new technology, I didn't have to leave my ham radio friends behind, either. At my XYL's sister's house my first job was to repair the broken cable internet, an easy fix that simply required rebooting the cable modem and the wireless router. Now that the internet was back in business, it was easy to check in to the Handiham Echolink net using a tiny netbook computer and a USB microphone. I also managed a couple of check-ins on the 75 meter PICONET during the visit. No one minded, because there always seems to be some "down time" during these multi-day visits, and sometimes I think the best thing for everyone's mental health is to spend some time doing relaxing activities like reading or getting on the air. One interesting thing I noticed just before we headed out over the river and through the woods for Thanksgiving was the release of an NPRM, or Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, by the FCC. The topic: Amendment of the Amateur Service Rules Governing Vanity and Club Station Call Signs. The notice came to me in an FCC bulletin on the day before Thanksgiving, though the NPRM was actually issued on the day before, which was Tuesday, November 24. I have posted the NPRM on the Handiham website in a format that is more easily read than the original downloads. Because of the timing of the release during a busy, short holiday week, I suspect that many ham radio operators missed the announcement altogether, even though we posted it as soon as it was released, and the ARRL produced a story on ARRLweb that included an excellent explanation of what the NPRM is all about. Here are the main points. At the end of this story, I will provide links to the ARRL story and the NPRM on the Handiham website. · To look up anything on the FCC website or to offer comments on a notice of proposed rulemaking, one needs to know the docket number: WT Docket No. 09-209. · The vanity callsign program began in 1996, but the FCC did not set forth all of the procedures governing vanity calls. This NPRM attempts to do a bit of fine-tuning by specifying some procedures. · Club station licensing is also due to be addressed in this NPRM, stating: "The Commission also decided in the Vanity Report and Order to resume issuing new club station licenses. We believe that certain rule changes to the club station licensing rules may be appropriate." and "...call signs shown on the license of a deceased licensee generally are unavailable to the vanity call sign system for two years after the license expires or is canceled. Below, we propose to amend our rules to clarify the process by which such call signs become available for reassignment." · If the rule changes are made, Novice Class licensees would be able to serve as club station trustees. The conclusion states: "In summary, we believe that the public interest will be served by amending certain rules in order to make the amateur service’s vanity call sign system more equitable and transparent. We also propose changes in the rules governing club station licensing, to promote equitable and administratively efficient processes. We therefore seek comment on these proposed rule changes. In addition, we invite commenters to propose any other amendments to the rules governing the vanity call sign system and club station licensing." I urge you to do some further research on this NPRM, even though it is a busy time of year. You will find the appropriate links after my identification. For Handiham World, I'm... Patrick Tice, wa0tda@xxxxxxxx * The NPRM <http://www.handiham.org/node/625> Amendment of the Amateur Service Rules Governing Vanity and Club Station Call Signs * The ARRL <http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2009/11/25/11220/?nc=1> story, a must-read * WT Docket No. 09-209 <http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/FCC-09-102A1.pdf> (PDF with embedded text and accessibility options) _____ Summer Camp Registration Has Begun at Courage Center Camps Summer Camp Registration Has Begun campers operate the radio from the pontoon boat We are happy to announce that registration for the summer of 2010 is underway. The Camp catalog is at the printer right now and will be landing in mailboxes by the end of January. However, session information is available on our website and the application is available to download. www.couragecenter.org/camps <http://e2ma.net/go/6552522487/208053658/209706036/18299/goto:http:/www.couragecenter.org/camps> . Campers who register by March 6th will receive a limited edition gift. Don't miss out! Send in your application today. If someone you know would like to be added to our mailing list, please give us a call at (866) 520-0504. Be sure to mention Radio Camp if you want to attend the Handiham camp this summer. The catalog will have a list of all of our camp sessions. _____ Handiham Radio Camp 2010 Camp Courage – Woodland Campus - May 21-28, 2010 - Ages 16 and older Enjoy a week of Ham radio fun and learning. Make new friends while building an on-air community that continues after you leave Radio Camp. Get a first Ham radio license or upgrade a current one, or learn new operating skills. Keep abreast of the latest technology, including assistive technology. Wireless internet access is available. Instructors are experienced amateur radio operators from throughout the nation. Trained staff members provide personal care assistance. And, we leave plenty of time to take a break from studying and enjoy traditional camp activities. Full Cost: $875 (Discounts available based on ability to pay.) <http://www.couragecenter.org/images/Camp/2010%20Camp%20application.pdf> Download a camper application Contact us by email to ask a question: hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx · Printer-friendly <http://www.handiham.org/print/631> version · Send <http://www.handiham.org/printmail/631> to friend _____ Donate online to support Handihams <http://www.handiham.org/node/628> Website donation pull-down menu showing Handi-Hams selected Now you can support the Handiham program by donating on line using Courage Center's secure website. It is easy, but one thing to remember is that you need to use the pull-down menu to designate your gift to the Handiham program. See the image to learn how the website' "Designation" pull-down menu should look. Step one: Follow <https://couragecenter.us/SSLPage.aspx?pid=294&srcid=344> this link to the secure Courage Center Website. Step two: Fill out the form, being careful to use the pull-down Designation menu to select "Handi-Hams". Step three: Submit the form to complete your donation. If the gift is a tribute to someone, don't forget to fill out the tribute information. This would be a gift in memory of a silent key, for example. We really appreciate your help. As you know, we have cut expenses this year due to the difficult economic conditions. We are working hard to make sure that we are delivering the most services to our members for the money - and we plan to continue doing just that in 2010. Thank you from the Members, Volunteers, and Staff of the Handiham System Patrick Tice, WA0TDA Handiham Manager patt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx · By wa0tda at 11/30/2009 - 20:49 · Login <http://www.handiham.org/user/login?destination=comment/reply/629%2523comment-form> to post comments · Printer-friendly <http://www.handiham.org/print/629> version · Send <http://www.handiham.org/printmail/629> to friend _____ Photos from Zola Center Antenna Party, November 7, 2009 Submitted by k9hi on Tue, 12/01/2009 - 16:26 <http://www.temples.com/mod/gallery/album118/aas> <http://www.temples.com/mod/gallery/album118/aas> Zola Center Antenna Party, November 7, 2009 <http://www.temples.com/mod/gallery/album118/aas> I've posted photos from the recent antenna party at the Zola Center for Persons With Disabilities at Brigham House in Newton Highlands, MA. A number of Zola folk as well as Boston ARC members spent the morning and afternoon constructing and erecting an HF and a 2m/440 antenna for future club station use. It was a great learning experience for some of the newer Zola Center hams, and it was a lot of fun for us old-timers, too. Thanks to Phil, K9HI, for sharing these photos. Antenna parties are like old-fashioned barn raisings. Everyone pitches in to get the job done so that another station can get on the air. <http://www.temples.com/mod/gallery/album118?page=1> See Phil's photos here. _____ So how do those zeros show up in Jaws and Window-Eyes? It's been quite awhile since I asked this question of our blind readers and listeners, so I think it's about time to ask again. Here is my callsign with the zero typed in using the number key on the keyboard: WA0TDA. Got that okay? All right, now here is my callsign with the slash-zero, typed using the <alt>0216 string to get the slash through the zero: WAØTDA. Was your screenreader smart enough to know that the slash-zero is supposed to be read as a zero? Sighted readers sometimes are confused by the "0", the only numerical character in callsigns here in the zero district, mistaking it for the letter "O". My preference would be to follow the lead of other ham radio website and use the slash-zero, but I don't really want to confuse our blind readers, either. On the other hand, maybe by now screenreaders routinely read the slash-zero correctly. Let me know what you think: wa0tda@xxxxxxxx _____ You can't beat this kind of service ARRL diamond logoLast month I participated in my local club's VE session. The session capped a 10-week run of classes that the club had offered leading to the General license. Thinking back to the days when exams were given at FCC Field offices, I have to admit that those were not the "good old days". When you passed your exam under the steely eye of the Engineer-in-Charge or one of his minions, the results were sent to Gettysburg, PA (no doubt by Pony Express), where they spent more than a few nights on the town before clanking out of the bureaucracy and finally arriving by surface mail many weeks later in your mailbox. Then, and only then, could you get on the air with your hard-earned privileges. Ah, yes. That was then and this is now. You know things are really working well when you get a note like this one from our VE team leader, Shel, N0DRX: The new tickets & upgrades from our November 19th VE session were issued by the FCC on Tuesday, and appeared on www.qrz.com today. Processing time by the ARRL & FCC exceeded my expectations! Tuesday would have been November 24, which meant a turnaround time of only 5 days between the VE session and the license or upgrade! Kudos are due to everyone concerned, including the SARA VE Team, the ARRL VEC, and the FCC. Good work, one & all! _____ Elsewhere Dick Garey, WA0CAF, found a useful article by Michael McCarty on the APH "Fred's Head" website that explains the difference between some common computer security risks, such as malware, spyware, adware, and grayware. In a phone call, Dick also pointed out that some of the longer links in your weekly e-letter don't work. The reason is that for users who receive plain text email, the links "word-wrap" in some email clients, and that cuts off the last part of the web address that was printed in the e-letter. The link appears to be incorrect, but what was really happening was that the last part of the link appeared on another line. To fix this, I am going to embed the links in the HTML code. Here is how it will be different, using the link to the APH Fred's Head article: Old way: Here is the link to the Fred's Head article: <http://www.fredshead.info/2009/11/whats-difference-between-spyware.html> http://www.fredshead.info/2009/11/whats-difference-between-spyware.html New way: <http://www.fredshead.info/2009/11/whats-difference-between-spyware.html> Here is the link to the Fred's Head article. We hope this change will work out for our readers. Almost all newsletters and web publications now use the new standard, and most of the email I get from our Handiham members is now in HTML format, so we think this change will help tidy up the Weekly Handiham World as well as provide better functionality. _____ This week at Headquarters: Speaking of social networking, we are on <http://www.handiham.org/node/476> Twitter! <http://www.handiham.org/sites/default/files/images/ham_mobile.jpg> We are on Twitter! Look for us on Twitter by searching for "handiham". We invite you to follow us. Handiham web page posts are now "tweeted" automatically! · Our phone numbers are working again! If you get voice mail, please leave your call back number, the reason for the call, and the best time for us to call you back. · The e-letter is late today since I had meetings to attend. · The regular Friday audio lectures return to the usual Friday release date this week. · In Operating Skills: o Pat, WA0TDA, reads the December 2009 QST audio digest for our blind members. o Volunteer reader Ken Padgitt, W9MJY, reads the December "Doctor is in" column from QST for our blind members. o Volunteer reader Bob Zeida, N1BLF, has completed the December Worldradio & CQ digests. o Login to the member section of the Handiham <http://handiham.org/user> website and find the magazine digests in the Library. o Volunteer George, N0SBU, has completed and mailed the December 4-track cassette audio digest to our blind members. · Our Contact information is the same, but keep watching this space for changes: Email addresses will not change. Courage Center Handiham System 3915 Golden Valley Road Golden Valley, MN 55422 763-520-0512 (Nancy) 763-520-0511 (Pat) · Our email address (for Nancy's office) is <mailto:hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx · Pat can be reached by email any time, including nights and weekends, at <mailto:wa0tda@xxxxxxxx> wa0tda@xxxxxxxx or <mailto:patt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> patt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx · The equipment loan program is on hold right now due to limited staff hours. o The Handiham equipment program still welcomes donations of good ham radio equipment. o We plan to distribute donated equipment to our radio campers at the next Radio Camp session. o Handiham members who already have equipment out on loan may continue to borrow that equipment. · Minnesota Radio Camp dates for 2010, Camp Courage: Arrive Friday, May 21 Class days: Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday VE Exam Day: Thursday Depart Friday, May 28 · Camp Courage is west of Minneapolis. The address is 8046 83rd St NW, Maple Lake, MN. o The phone number of the Camp Courage office is (320) 963-3121. o If you want to receive a Camp Courage summer camp schedule, you may call for one. The camp schedule includes information about Handiham Radio Camp. If you need specific information about the radio camp or want to be on the radio camp mailing list, you may call Nancy in the Handiham office at 1-866-426-3442. o Here is an interactive Google map showing Camp Courage: <http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=embed&hl=en&geocode=&q=camp+courage+maple+lake+mn&sll=37.0625,-95.677068&sspn=41.496446,93.076172&ie=UTF8&hq=camp+courage&hnear=Maple+Lake,+MN&ll=45.271066,-94.056286&spn=0.084565,0.145912&z=12> View Google Map · VOLLI is now in service. It stands for VOLunteer Log In, and is a way for our Handiham volunteers to register and then enter their volunteer hours without having to fool around with paper records. We encourage volunteers to create a username and password, then submit their hours spent recording audio, doing club presentations for us, and so on. Volunteer hours are important, because United Way funding depends in part on volunteer hours. If you are a volunteer and need a link to VOLLI, please email me at wa0tda@xxxxxxxxx Our special thanks to my son Will, KC0LJL, who wrote the Java code for VOLLI. He is studying in Tokyo this semester and sends a big "hello" to our readers and listeners. · Volunteers, get your November hours in through VOLLI - I'll be checking them soon! You may also submit volunteer hours to Nancy at <mailto:hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx · The Remote Base at Courage North is in service. Please feel free to use this wonderful member resource. · Stay in touch! Be sure to send Nancy your change of address, phone number changes, or email address changes so that we can continue to stay in touch with you. You may either email Nancy at hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx or call her toll-free at 1-866-426-3442. Mornings are the best time to contact us. _____ Wednesday Evening EchoLink Net Wednesday Evening EchoLink Net happy guy with headset Wednesday evenings the Handiham EchoLink net will be on the air. Please join us and check in or simply listen in, as you see fit: When: Wednesday evenings at 19:30 hours Minnesota time (7:30 PM) GMT: Thursday morning at 01:30 Z. Where: 145.450 MHz N0BVE repeater (Minneapolis-St. Paul) Node 89680 (EchoLink worldwide) IRLP node 9008 (Vancouver BC reflector) WIRES system number 1427 Everyone is welcome. You do not need to be a member, and the net is relaxed, friendly, and informal. By the way, our Net Manager Howard, KE7KNN, reminds us that we need net control stations for the Wednesday evening net and for the Monday through Saturday morning net. If you are in the Twin Cities, all you need is a radio that can get on the 145.45 N0BVE repeater, and if you live outside the RF area, you can still be net control via EchoLink, IRLP, or WIRES. _____ Reminder: Handiham renewals are on a monthly schedule - Please renew or join, as we need you to keep our program strong! You will have several choices when you renew: · Join at the usual $10 annual dues level for one year. Your renewal date is the anniversary of your last renewal, so your membership extends for one year. · Join for three years at $30. · Lifetime membership is $100. · If you can't afford the dues, request a sponsored membership for the year. · Donate an extra amount of your choice to help support our activities. · Discontinue your membership. Please return your renewal form as soon as possible. Your support is critical! Please help. The Courage Handiham System depends on the support of people like you, who want to share the fun and friendship of ham radio with others. Please help us provide services to people with disabilities. We would really appreciate it if you would remember us in your estate plans. If you need a planning kit, please call. If you are wondering whether a gift of stock can be given to Handihams, the answer is yes! Please call Nancy at: 1-866-426-3442 or email: <mailto:hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Ask for a free DVD about the Handiham System. It’s perfect for your club program, too! The video tells your club about how we got started, the Radio Camps, and working with hams who have disabilities. Call 1-866-426-3442 toll-free. 1-866-426-3442 toll-free -- Help us get new hams on the air. Free! Get the Handiham E-Letter by email every Wednesday, and stay up-to-date with ham radio news. · You may listen in audio to the E-Letter at www.handiham.org <http://www.handiham.org/> . Email us to subscribe: <mailto:hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Handiham members with disabilities can take an online audio course at www.handiham.org <http://www.handiham.org/> : • Beginner • General • Extra • Operating Skills _____ That's it for this week. 73 from all of us at the Courage Handiham System! Pat, WA0TDA Manager, Courage Handiham System Reach me by email at: <mailto:patt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> patt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx · Nancy, Handiham Secretary: hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx · Pat, WA0TDA, Manager, patt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx · Radio Camp email: radiocamp@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx ARRL </p /> <p>diamond logo ARRL is the premier organization supporting amateur radio worldwide. Please contact Handihams for help joining the ARRL. We will be happy to help you fill out the paperwork! The weekly e-letter is a compilation of software tips, operating information, and Handiham news. It is published on Wednesdays, and is available to everyone free of charge. Please email wa0tda@xxxxxxxx for changes of address, unsubscribes, etc. Include your old email address and your new address. · By wa0tda at 12/02/2009 - 23:52 · Login <http://www.handiham.org/user/login?destination=comment/reply/632%2523comment-form> to post comments · Printer-friendly <http://www.handiham.org/print/632> version · Send <http://www.handiham.org/printmail/632> to friend _____ Courage Center Handiham System 3915 Golden Valley Road Golden Valley, MN 55422 E-Mail: hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Toll-Free telephone: 1-866-HANDIHAM (1-866-426-3442) FAX:(763) 520-0577 Be sure to put "Handihams" in the FAX address! We look forward to hearing from you soon.