Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Are you kidding me?

Spore Creepy Parts Pack

Are they serious. 20 bucks for a few dozen parts, most of which I'd never use in day to day play anyway? When the original game only costs $50. When they dumbed down the original game for the casual player. This game was supposed to be SimEarth on crack and while it's fun for what it is now it is not the game they hyped for so many years. And now they want to charge 20 bucks for something they aught to throw in for free for me buying the game. I'd pay 5 bucks for a parts pack.

If we do eventually get a real expansion that adds real features, like simearth type features, will they charge more than the original 50 bucks for that? I get the impression that they are testing the waters since WoWs new expansion is debuting at $40, a mere $10 less than the original cost of the game and with a fraction of the content. Is this inflation at work? Is this just plan McBush style greed? I don't understand when xpacks started costing 40 bucks and some simple additional content started costing 20?

This Goat's for you Dan

I was playing a quick round of Fallout 3 last night (late late late) after barely finishing up my homework and one of the first achievements I got was the GOAT whisperer, complete with goat picture. It stands for General Operational Aptitude Test or some BS but out of the 5 readers of this blog 3 will get a chuckle out of this.

Friday, October 24, 2008

This sh it is TiTZ

Chrono Trigger DS at IGN

I'm droolinating at the prospect of portable Chrono Trigger. This shit is gunna drop right when I'm gunna be balls deep in homework too. Kats, get on the doing my homework.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Getting on MAX air

Well I've been milling about getting a DC to daylight transceiver but the radio coffers are only around 400 bucks. I've been wanting an IC-706 or IC-746 but there's just not the funds. I managed to snag a FT-767GX with 2/6m and 70cm modules. Exactly the bands I need SSB on. It should be arriving in a few days. This will set back finishing the APRS station for a few weeks but generally this was a deal I didn't want to pass up. I can even get on 10 meters with my current licence so I might poke around on that, try some PSK31 on it or something. I'll post more when it arrives. I've sold the VX-170 to help fund 2 and 6 meter antennas for this rig. I'll probably pick up a cheap 2/440 mobile at some time to keep up with the local repeaters and to monitor 146.520 after the APRS station is finished. Then should have the shack set for some time, at least until a house is bought and basement modified for shacking and gaming activities.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


Seems like I might have enough games around here that I don't play that I could sell a few and easily get 2 and 6 meter rigs.

SSB 6 and 2

I may have a bead on a Mac Mini that needs some slight repair to go in the radio shack so may have a computer up there shortly.

I don't remember if I mentioned but I'll be connecting my Icom IC-28H to a Byonics TinyTrak4. I'll probably use an SMA adapter to hook the IC-28H the MR77 on the cookie sheet and I'll adapt the J-pole for use with my VX-170 which is functioning as my main 2 meter radio right now. I usually keep the 170 scanning a few local repeaters and 146.52 and 146.58 simplex.

While talking to the old men in Newton on the repeater is fine I'm looking for a little more excitement out of my radio experience. Though I did strike up a nice QSO for a few with a fella on I-80 heading to Wyoming from New Jersey.

Anyway after the APRS project I'm looking to get into 2 and 6 meter SSB and that will probably be the extent of my radio projects until I buy a house.

For 6 Meters I'm saving my pennies for the Ranger 5054 DX. I will probably couple this with a KU4AB horizontal loop. This is probably the best for my limited space in the attic area for antennas. For 2 meter at some point if I can't find an old 2 meter all mode or Ranger doesn't come out with one I'll probably get the MFJ-9402. Again I'll either tie this probably to a KU4AB loop, maybe dual loops with a phasing harness for extra gain. I'm probably going to get the 6 meter radio first though because there are more options for cross country and international DX opportunities.

Monday, October 13, 2008


I'm investigating logging options as I will be setting up a Mac in my Shack when I get one up there. Here is a shot of the medocre shack as it is right now. There is a copper jpole and a Diamond MR77 on a cookie sheet in the attic room connected to these two radios.

I'm probably going to go with Aether as it's the most modern Mac logging app. MacLoggerDx is of course the standard but I'll try the new cocoa guy see how it goes.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

6 Meters

I'm considering getting into 6 meters with a Ringo 6 Meter All Mode Rig. And throw up a wire antenna in the attic. Talk the world on a good night with that rig and a decent antenna. Wut you all think?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Close to APRS station completion

I've been working on setting up an APRS station. Other than non-infrastructure communication, one of my main interests in Ham Radio is digital modes, PSK31, packet, etc... I'd like to utilize APRS to let other APRS users know that I'm normally monitoring 146.520 and just generally see how many APRS users are traveling up and down the interstate, and to pass on APRS information to the APRS-IS network. This can allow for text messages to be sent across the country via the decentralized APRS network. This information is also used to calculate VHF DX paths, normally caused by various weather conditions.

My setup is going to consist of the following items, some which I have, some which I dont have yet. I'll be connecting them to some sort of computer, and I'll probably run Xastir. If I can find a cheap enough mini I might get one of those just to have a mac in my shack running Aether. Plus Xastir has a ubuntu VM already made for VMware which would require minimum setup on my part.

Items I have
Icom IC-28H - This unit will transmit 5/45W, I'll just be running on 5w given the antenna proximity to my shack. I picked this up from a guy on QRZ for a song. It's a damn solid and fun rig.
Aston RS-20M - Picked this up again from a guy on QRZ for a mere $70 bucks. At it's cheapest new it's a 130 dollar American made power supply. Right now it's clipped direct to the 28H but in the near future I'll be connecting all my stuff to a RigRunner.
Copper Jpole - The KB9VBR Jpole was about as cheap as I could make it myself, and I didn't have to make it myself. Great omnidirectional performance as well. I can peg repeaters in Marshalltown and Pella on 5W and still come in moderatly perceptable.

Items I need yet
Terminal Node Controller: This has been a point of contention for me. For a while I was considering a RigBlaster which offers lots of options for various modes but I'm not sure about the software TNC setup for APRS. I was considering a Kantronics KPC3+ but 200 bucks plus min 20 bucks for a cable was too much for a project I'm trying to do on the cheap. After talking with Byon at Byonics I've settled on the TinyTrak4. This should allow me to do what I need to do with it in KISS TNC mode. And it won't cost me my left nut to do it. With 8 pin cable for my radio it should only run me 90 bucks tops.

After this project I'm going to try and get into some 2 meter SSB action. Frankly I like the VHF bands, I dont need 60 foot antennas to get my signal out there. The question is what SSB radio. All mode 2 meter radios are expensive and hard to comeby anymore sans the MFJ-9402X. While this radio is neat, and simple, and has a nice old school charm to it I may put the SSB project on the back burner for a year or two to save up for an Icom 706. We'll see I got time.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

This is not a spam blog

This blog is not a spam blog, I am slowly getting to migrating my current blog I have manually at to this blogger blog. PLLLLlease unlock this blog.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Test test ham ham r adio

Badabababa I'm testin it.