[FOSDEM] contacts for organisational issues

Daniel Pocock daniel at pocock.pro
Thu Dec 24 23:44:55 CET 2015

On 09/08/15 21:08, Kristoff wrote:
> Daniel,
> (inline comments)
> On 09-08-15 20:06, Daniel Pocock wrote:
>> On 09/08/15 19:47, Kristoff wrote:
>>> Daniel,
>>> The ham-radio info booth of 2015 was the result of the devroom
>>> gnuradio/software defined radio of 2014 where we had a number of people
>>> saying "concidering the audience for this devroom, why not try to
>>> promote ham-radio a little bit while we are there".
>>> So that is why we where in the building where that devroom was held.
>> If I understand correctly, the FOSDEM team want to put an emphasis on
>> development (the D is FOSDEM) and it is good for any stand or devroom
>> proposal to relate to this.
> Actually, the FOSDEM team are not realy involved in this. They are just
> the nice people who provide us with a space for our booth and allow us
> to promote ham-radio :-)
> The infobooth of FOSDEM 2015 came from a discussion in the mailing-list
> of gnuradio where we noticed that there where a number of hams on the list.
> In FOSDEM 2014, we had a small get-together and one of the things that
> emerged to many hams nowdays are just "operator" and to few people
> actually developing things. For FOSDEM 2015, there was somebody who had
> a spot for a infobooth in the building where the SDR devroom was held
> who proposed to use part of his space to promote ham-radio. With
> agreement of the FOSDEM staff, we used that place.
> But, actually, when one of the speakers of a 2015 talk in the SDR
> devroom asked the audience how many had already heared about ham-radio,
> it turned out that almost half of the audience where licensed hams! So
> it looks like there may be more people involved in software development
> that are also ham-radio operators then we think. :-)

Many more would probably qualify too - many people with certain degrees
in physics or engineering can bypass the technical exam, e.g. in Australia:


>> Personally, I feel that amateur radio is a development activity because
>> you basically have to pass an engineering exam in order to become
>> licensed.  As you correctly point out, in modern radio, development
>> spans hardware and software.  You will want to emphasize the software
>> development aspects in your proposal.
> My point has always been to show that ham-radio is not just some old
> guys talking on the radio of a old HF set or doing morse-code. Nowdays,
> it is now a hobby that is connections to a lot of other hobbies.

In my personal opinion, it is one of the best ways for developers to
gain practical insight into hardware and electronics and this makes all
of us better at understanding entire systems end-to-end rather than
being confined to one little silo on a project.

> In fact, I have already given a talk on "digital voice over radio"
> (dealing with how voice is encoded, with how to deal with errors in
> real-time communications, ....) during the software-freedom day in HSB
> (hackerspace Brussels); so to an audience of techical savy (but not
> necessairy radio-minded) people.
> Our local radio-club in Ostend Belgium has had a cooperation with the
> local astronomy club on meteor-detection via reflection of radio-signals
> and n two weeks, we will be giving a small info-session on ham-radio
> during a "star-party" (astronomy observation events) near Iepers.
> On the other side, I also give a small course on programming and arduino
> in our radio-club.
> One of the things I show is that techniques used in one hobby are also
> used in other fields.
> One example: it turns out that the techniques used in digital
> key-board-to-keyboard communication (like olivia, JT65, ...) and WSPR
> ("weak signal propogation") to extracte a radio-signal up to 20 db BELOW
> the noice-floor are actually the same as used by the people doing
> astrophotograhy to take pictured of very weak objects.
> As explained, you can probably match it to quite a number of different
> fields covered by FOSDEM.
> The fact is has been located near to the SDR devroom is simply historical.

Has it been approved again in some form for FOSDEM 2016?




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