Integrating Digital Voice Protocols

Let me begin with words from ARRL’s past President Rick Roderick, K5UR.  *In the ARRL 2017 Annual Report that Focuses on Hurricane Response, his message to ARRL members, suggests that a paradigm shift is under way within Amateur Radio.

“The wants and needs of the new-generation hams are very different from those of ‘traditional’ hams — of which I consider myself one,” Roderick wrote. “[W]e’ve got to embrace and meet the challenges of new technological developments and the operating trends of the next generation. It’s a different landscape than when I started. ARRL is there to support and promote these new things as outlined in our mission statement — to advance the art, science, and enjoyment of Amateur Radio — and to fight for our spectrum allocations, but the organization does not ‘own’ Amateur Radio. That ownership rests with hams.” Roderick said seeds for change planted in 2017 are starting to sprout, as ARRL also adapts to a changing Amateur Radio environment.

*The ARRL Letter, August 2, 2018

COSWN danced around technological development several years ago with surveys on D-Star use and the promotion of APRS for weather spotter location.  Further improvements have happened with the deployment of APCO P25, DMR and Fusion repeater systems.  Price points are reasonable and several protocols include in-band transmission of GPS data and radio identification.

The COSWN Board has supported and promoted secured microwave networks to remove dependence on internet service providers and cybersecurity threats as a way to make sure that our systems remain available when everything else is impaired.

We intend to move into the integration of digital voice protocols in a deliberate and measured way.  Our first step will be to conduct an additional net on Tuesday evening after the analog net on 146.760 MHz.

We believe it is important for all of us to understand the parameters that can influence digital communication.  Digital communication does not relieve us from having the proper mobile installation in our vehicles.  Neither does it mean that a 50 dollar handie talkie is the radio of choice in a car.  Digital communication does not increase the range of your signal.

We will bring further details about all of this to you in the weeks ahead.  Thank you for your attention.

John Montgomery – President
Central Ohio Severe Weather Network
August 11, 2018