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 Comments on this new sampling rate are requested: <mailto:wa0tda@xxxxxxxx> wa0tda@xxxxxxxx <http://handiham.org/audio/handiham64.mp3> Get this issue as an audio podcast: http://feeds.feedburner.com/handiham _____ Welcome to Handiham World! Ralph Andrea, W0FCO, now a silent key Photo: Ralph Andrea, W0FCO, became a silent key in 1993. (Thanks to George, N0SBU & the History Project for this photo of Ralph posing with a handheld radio.) Recently I had a phone call from the elderly mother of a long-time Handiham member. She explained to me that her son needed some help with his radio. Of course we visited on the phone for awhile so that I could learn a bit more about the radio and what it was and wasn't doing, but then we got to talking about how her son had gotten help from a Handiham volunteer in past years. "Ralph Andrea used to come over to the house and help us with the station", she said. Ralph had passed away long ago, and now her son needed help again. I remember when I first started with the Handiham program myself. It was 1991, and one of the first people Sister Alverna, WA0SGJ, told me about was Ralph, W0FCO. "Ralph", she explained, "will never miss an opportunity to tell someone about the Handiham System - even complete strangers." It was true. If Ralph saw someone who used a wheelchair or a white cane, he would introduce himself and start his sales pitch about how much fun ham radio was and how the Handiham System could help them get started. He was an awesome volunteer, and I was privileged to meet him and work with him in the Handiham System for two years, until his death in 1993. There was almost no volunteer job that Ralph wouldn't handle. He would pay calls to members who needed antenna work or station setup help. He kept a massive collection of electronics parts in his basement, which was jammed with floor to ceiling shelves like a commercial repair shop. If someone needed a left-handed resistively-coupled doofrazzle, Ralph was going to find one in that collection, because everything was neatly stacked, organized, and labeled. When Ralph got sick and spent his final days in the V.A. Medical Center in Minneapolis, I got the feeling that he was still very much the Handiham volunteer. During one of my visits to his hospital room shortly before his death, he wanted to make sure that I would take good care of the Handiham System. That was the kind of guy Ralph was. Other people, especially Handiham members, came first. It was a sad day when we had to say goodbye to such a kind and dedicated friend of Courage Center. After Ralph became a silent key, Doris, his XYL, got help from the local ham community to sell the parts collection and radios, donating the proceeds to help us and even setting up a special fund to help Handihams into the future. The parts sale was so big that it filled the garage and the wide driveway. Hams from the 3M Amateur Radio Club and the St. Paul Radio Club as well as others pitched in to help. That gift of support still helps us offer services today, and I know that some of you, our readers and listeners, will step up to the plate and help keep the Handiham System healthy. Maybe you can give your time to help someone else. Perhaps you can teach a ham radio licensing class at your local radio club or school. Some of you will be able to help with gifts of financial support. Ralph did all of that stuff, but I sometimes wonder where he found the time. The thing is, if you truly want something in life, you are more likely to make it happen. He liked ham radio and made the special mission of the Handihams his priority. I want you to think about Ralph Andrea when someone asks you to help set up a rig or teach a class. Or yes, write a check to support us. Working together, we are sure to succeed when we have something as exciting as amateur radio to share. For Handiham World, I'm... Patrick Tice, wa0tda@xxxxxxxx _____ Howard, KE7KNN, will mentor potential net control stations 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. We know that there are operators out there who want to help but who need more practice. Howard and I have discussed this, and he says that he would be willing to teach potential new net control operators some of the basics via telephone. Although we do practice at radio camp sessions, the camp is only one week long, and with so much going on during that week, we really cannot spend the one-on-one time that we really need to make sure our operators are ready to take over a net. For example, here are some common problems I have heard on nets, some of them our nets and other VHF and HF nets as well: * The net control station doesn't use his or her callsign frequently enough. I have heard statements like, "Anyone else for the Handiham net, please call net control now." It is frustrating to hear this and not know who the net control station is. I have heard them go on and on asking stations to "call net control" without identifying their station by using their callsign! It leaves me wondering who to call. "Net control" is not a callsign. Basic lesson to be learned: Use your full callsign often when you are net control. * Failure to properly acknowledge stations that check in. If several stations check in, the net control station needs to acknowledge all of them before talking to each one in turn. If that doesn't happen, some of the operators whose calls have not been acknowledged may give up and move on. Basic lesson to be learned: Acknowledge all check-ins before talking to each of them in turn. * Failure to keep control of the net is a serious deal-breaker! I have heard operators who were admittedly newcomers to the duties of net control lose track of the stations who are checking in, allow stations to start talking among each other instead of getting permission from net control, failing to demand that stations checking in use their complete callsigns, allowing operators who do not know how to operate their equipment to tie up the net instead of sending them off frequency, and so on. Basic lesson to be learned: If you are the net control, you must CONTROL the net. * Not using a system to limit check-ins by geography, callsign prefix, repeater system vs. Echolink, or other means. When the net control does not limit potential check-ins by some means, it can get overwhelming and you can easily miss many stations in a huge pile-up. Here are some examples of ways that I would use to limit the rush of stations: * "Are there any short-time stations? Please call WA0TDA now." * "Mobile stations, please call WA0TDA now." * "Are there any stations with emergency or priority traffic? Please call WA0TDA now." * "Are there any stations holding routine traffic? Please call WA0TDA now." * "Are there any stations outside North America? Please call WA0TDA now." * "Stations on the Twin Cities repeaters, please call WA0TDA now." * "Stations on the IRLP system, please call WA0TDA now." I think you get the idea. Lesson to be learned: There are plenty of ways to make the flow of stations checking in easier to manage. Those are some common problems, but there are certainly others that I have not listed here. The point is that we need to strike a balance between having a net environment where our members can learn and one where the net is efficiently conducted. That is why Howard is willing to give our members who struggle with some of these basics a little bit of extra help by phone. We should also teach an on line lecture series on proper net protocols, but for now I must put my time in teaching the Extra Class, which is really time-consuming. One thing we can all do is listen to other nets and see if we can tell which of them are being properly run and which other one are falling short. You always learn by listening! You may email Howard, KE7KNN, for a schedule and get some help by email or phone: <mailto:hjones451@xxxxxxx> hjones451@xxxxxxx _____ Handiham Radio Camp 2010 http://handiham.org/images/camptour/DSCN1093.jpg Photo: Will, KC0LJL, tries a sailboat ride at radio camp. 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 are available based on ability to pay. Believe me, you can afford camp!) <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 _____ Year-End edition of the Courage Center Handiham World Year-End edition of the Courage Center Handiham World Get the four-page year-end Handiham World print edition in PDF, available right now as a download. <http://www.handiham.org/files/hhw_winter_2010_final.pdf> Click here for the Handiham World PDF download. An audio version is coming soon. If you are on our mailing list, you will get the print edition in your regular mail very soon. Please consider supporting the non-profit Handiham System. A postage-paid giving envelope is included in the print edition that will be arriving in your mailbox soon. We are grateful for any help you can give us! _____ We attend a Resource Fair We attend a Resource Fair - Pat poses at the display table. Photo: Pat, WA0TDA, and Susan (behind the camera) Tice staffed the Courage Center Camps table at the Washington County Schools Special Services Resource Fair on Tuesday evening. The blizzard was swirling around Woodbury High School with full force, which prompted the organizers to give us a "thank you" card for showing up! It reads: Yea, Courage Center - You braved the storm! So glad you did! Many youth with benefit from it. I guess I should've expected "Courage Center" to show up no matter how bad the weather gets! Thanks so much. Grateful parents and education professionals collected information from us about Camps, the Driving Program, Courage St. Croix, Golden Valley, Aquatics, and the Handiham program. It also turned out to be an opportunity to thank a couple of our kind donors. The Courage Center name is well-respected, and that makes representing us easy - and fun! · By wa0tda at 12/09/2009 - 15:33 · Login <http://www.handiham.org/user/login?destination=comment/reply/639%2523comment-form> to post comments · Printer-friendly <http://www.handiham.org/print/639> version · Send <http://www.handiham.org/printmail/639> to friend _____ So how do those zeros show up in Jaws and Window-Eyes? We asked that question of our readers and listeners, and the consensus of the many replies we got is that the slash-zero is not read correctly unless the screenreader user takes special pains to set it up to read as a "zero". For that reason, we will continue our practice of using "0" in callsigns like WA0TDA instead of "Ø", which does not read correctly. The slash-zero is commonly used to distinguish the numeral in a callsign from the letters. The exception will be in our print publications, including PDF versions, since the lack of the slash-zero can create confusion, especially in callsigns that contain both a zero and a letter "O". _____ Fraudulent emails referencing CDC-sponsored State Vaccination Program Fraudulent emails referencing CDC-sponsored State Vaccination Program CDC has received reports of fraudulent emails (phishing) referencing a CDC sponsored State Vaccination Program. The messages request that users must create a personal H1N1 (swine flu) Vaccination Profile on the cdc.gov website. The message then states that anyone that has reached the age of 18 has to have his/her personal Vaccination Profile on the cdc.gov site. The CDC has NOT implemented a state vaccination program requiring registration on www.cdc.gov. Users that click on the email are at risk of having malicious code installed on their system. CDC reminds users to take the following steps to reduce the risk of being a victim of a phishing attack: * Do not follow unsolicited links and do not open or respond to unsolicited email messages. * Use caution when visiting un-trusted websites. * Use caution when entering personal information online. An example of the Phishing email follows: Sample H1N1 phishing e-mail More on the CDC website: <http://www.cdc.gov/hoaxes_rumors.html> http://www.cdc.gov/hoaxes_rumors.html · By wa0tda at 12/04/2009 - 16:09 · Login <http://www.handiham.org/user/login?destination=comment/reply/636%2523comment-form> to post comments · Printer-friendly <http://www.handiham.org/print/636> version · Send <http://www.handiham.org/printmail/636> to friend _____ <http://www.handiham.org/node/635> December Events by N1YXU <http://www.handiham.org/node/635> Snowman with handheld radio I hope that each of you enjoyed a very Happy Thanksgiving. We had a wonderful day with family and, yes, there was food involved! We have tried a new recipe – turkey shepherd’s pie. It was very good. If you are interested in the recipe, please send me an email. I’ll be happy to share. You could probably find use for the leftovers from the turkey that you will cook in the next few weeks! Regardless of the holidays that you celebrate during the month of December, be sure to reflect on the blessings that each of us enjoys. One of those is the ability to communicate via amateur radio. I hope that you find at least one amateur radio event in this month’s information that will attract your interest. Until next month…. Regards, - Laurie Meier, N1YXU n1yxu@xxxxxxxx · Read more on the Handiham <http://www.handiham.org/node/635> website. Look for the December Events story or simply follow this link. _____ 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 regular Friday audio lectures will be released as usual 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. _____ 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 _____ 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 12/09/2009 - 20:20 · Login <http://www.handiham.org/user/login?destination=comment/reply/643%2523comment-form> to post comments · Printer-friendly <http://www.handiham.org/print/643> version · Send <http://www.handiham.org/printmail/643> 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.