||I have been a FCC licensed amateur radio operator (sometimes called HAM) since sometime around 1988. Many of the things we take for granted today with wireless communications, were pioneered by HAM radio operators of past and present. Today, there is work being done with Digital Signal Processing to create “software” radios. Amateur Radio isn’t just about tubes, transistors, etc. anymore. Computers are increasingly used for everyday activities, and experimentation. Did you know there is a TCP/IP network that runs over amateur radio frequencies? In addition to experimentation, HAM operators often help out with reporting and coordination of events, assist local authorities during disaster conditions, and watch local weather conditions to assist the National Weather Service with eye witness reports. Whether you just want to rag chew with the locals, or communicate around the world, Amateur Radio can be a very rewarding hobby. If you’d like to support Amateur Radio in North America, you can donate to the following organizations: the American Radio Relay League (ARRL), and the Radio Amateurs of Canada (RAC).Additionally, the FCC has relaxed the Morse code requirement. All license classes now only a written exam (no code). The Technician class license gives you privileges on all amateur frequencies from 50 MHz and up (VHF, UHF, and Microwave). The General class license gives you privileges on all bands (but not all frequencies) in the HF spectrum from 30 MHz and below allocated to amateurs, while the Extra class license gives you all frequencies in the HF spectrum allocated to amateurs. All other license classes (Novice, Tech Plus, and Advance) are no longer being issued. See the Links page for links to amateur radio sites.
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||I enjoy reading when I have, or make, the time for it. I like reading the Cyberpunk genera, Technology oriented Spy and Mystery, and some Sci-Fi and Fantasy. A few of my favorites are: The Neuromancer Trilogy by William Gibson, Good Omens by Neil Gaiman & Terry Pratchett, Tom Clancy’s Net Force (7 book, so far, series), what I call the “Jack Ryan series” by Tom Clancy because Jack is the main character through the books (this includes the four that movies were made out of, and others) , and The Chronicles of Amber (10 book series) by Roger Zelazny. I also recently got into Laurell Hamilton’s Anita Blake Vampire Hunter series, and I’ve started reading the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher based on a friend’s recommendation.
||My hobby and, for the last almost 15 years, my career. Computers have interested me since I was 9 or 10. Most of my free time use to be devoted to “playing” with them and figuring out how to make them do things. Unfortunately, making them a career was possibly not the best choice. After a long hard day at work, I rarely want to “play” anymore. I do still enjoy them as a hobby on weekends when I have free time though.
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||I enjoy going to the movies with friends when I have time. I’m mostly into action and technology (when Hollywood portrays the tech properly) movies. Some of my recent favorites are: The Matrix Trilogy, the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Dreamcatcher, and the Harry Potter series. A few less recent, but always good ones, are: The Reservoir Dogs, The Professional, Titan AE, The Perfect Storm, and Bladerunner.
||I listen to most types of music. I grew up on 80s pop and metal, alternative and industrial in college, and will listen to almost anything else. There is rarely a waking moment when there is not some form of music playing around me.
||I was introduced to role-playing games in college with Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd Edition. While I never fully got into D&D, I do enjoy other table top role-playing games such as Cyberpunk, White Wolf’s World of Darkness, Rifts, and others. It is, however, increasing difficult to get four, or five, people in the same place at once. Because of this, I do not usually “game” on a regular basis anymore. See the Links page for links to role-playing sites.