Thursday, April 09, 2009

General and Extra Irritation

So as part of my efforts towards better preparedness and "getting to where we want to be" I'm upgrading my amateur radio operators license from Technician Class, to Amateur Extra within the next month or so (basically whenever I can find an exam session I can make it to).

I'm going to write a much bigger post about amateur radio communications in general, it's usefulness as a communications service especially in emergency situations, and it's practical applications and usage. That's one of the really big posts that I haven't had time to finish yet in fact.

Right now though, I'm just a little irritated, because theres a TON of this stuff that I SHOULD remember, that I don't. I have TWO frikken engineering degrees, and have been working with electronics since I built my first crystal set at age 6; but I've forgotten about 1/2 of the basic circuit diagrams, symbols, practices, and general electronic principles and rules, that I KNOW... they just aren't coming to me.

Stupid stuff like that. It bugs me. 'Course we all know, it is true, if you don't use it you lose it.

Anyway, I've been running the General class practice tests for about an hour now, and I'm up to getting consistently between 30 and 35 out of 35 (you need 25 out of 35 to pass); I just keep missing the silly stuff.

Oh and I need to work on remembering my operating privileges and bands better; and the weird and obscure regulations better. At least I tend to remember those after the first time I see them.

My other amateur friends have been bugging me a while (like since 2007 when they dropped the code requirements) when I was going to do the extra upgrade. Well, you've got your answer. Now I need to get JohnOC to upgrade with me.

Oh and Mel is going to get at least her tech as well.

Anybody know a good, free, CW tutorial available online? I'm horrible with code and I really should practice.