Saturday, January 4, 2014

Getting old and ham radio..........

Keeping it simple
I'm only 54 years old but over the past few years it's either my age or the growing of the hobby both technically and gadget wise that has given me some senior moments!! I really can't blame just the hobby as I have had times when heading to the car to only stop and wondering where is was I was heading too and for what! I'm comforted from online reading that says this is from having lots on the go and nothing to do with loosing your memory.  How does this relate to ham radio you say...........The rigs I have are the Elecraft K3 and KX3 both are menu driven as are many other rigs on the market are. I find myself going to the user manual or as I call it sometimes the "useless manual" to relearn a function that was just used the week before. I have had my ego get the best of me at times and refused to hit the books as I "knew" how to do this silly function command!! After going through several unknown menu's and not knowing how I got there, what I have done to the rig and better yet how to get the hell out! Oh and don't get me started on passwords that a whole other blog post!
3x5 life savers
For those of you who have the same memory melt downs at times as I do here are some helps that I use. In high school and University the good old 3x5 cards helped me learn (notice I said learn and not memorize very big difference) and pass many a test. The 3x5 helped me in the past and is doing so today, I write down step by step instructions for anything ham related items so I can refer to the card and not the Advil bottle. I cover over the card with clear tape so it will last for some time and the only thing I have to do is keep the cards in a place I can remember.....but maybe there is a card for that...:)). Just today I wanted to charge an external battery for my KX3 as I was going to do some hamming this weekend. I pulled out the battery and for the life of me I could not remember the setup to charge this darn battery. Thanks to a fellow blogger Larry W2LJ who has the same battery set me on the right path with an email. Now the instructions (simple as they may be) are taped on the side of the battery. 

10 comments:

  1. Hi Mike, we all have our senior moment, I'm afraid. Hi. How is the weather at your place. It seems to be very cold in Canada and USA. Here we mild weather, tomorrow 14C which is very warm for the time of year. 73 Paul

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  2. Good morning Paul, well it's good to know I'm not alone with the senior moments but it seems they are happening more often than not….:)) Those temps you are having sound just great here we are looking as you said a cold snap. The other day it was -35C with the wind chill and those temps are on their way back for Monday. Today the forecast is for milder temp's and 15-20cm of snow. Welcome to winter.

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  3. Another thing to consider is that when you encounter something new, be very sure that you completely understand it. If not, do research or ask questions. If you understand a new concept, you shouldn't need notes, unless they are for things that are hard to commit to memory, such as band plans or country prefixes. From my teaching experience, I have seen many people make notes or use index cards, and when they look at their notes later, they have no idea what they wrote because it doesn't make sense. So the first goal should be understanding - once that is achieved, then write it down as a note!

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    1. Good evening Tom, good to hear from you and thanks for taking the time to read the blog and commenting. I'm just speaking for myself when I say that if I had the time to really understand all that I'm supposed would mean there is a 30 hour day and no sleep needed. As it is now I am hoping my notes and 3x5's will do the trick.
      Mike

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  4. Hello Mike,

    Just wait till you're 65 .... I have a HT that's nearly impossible to program without a computer. I never leave home without the manual. I can tell you what was going on two years ago but can't recall what I had for the morning breakfast. The best you can do is keep a good sense of humor about it. It's gets worse..... (just kidding)

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    1. HI John and very nice to hear from you good to hear that it's not all that bad right now and I should rejoice with what memory I have!
      Thanks for stopping by John and have a great week.
      Mike

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  5. Hi Mike,

    great idea! I don't experience much other senior moments yet, but with radio menu's, logging programs and other stuff with too many buttons I recognize your problems. Make a card tray myself with these handy cards is the tip of 2014. Thanks!

    73, Jim

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    1. Good evening Jim, thanks for stopping by the blog and taking the time to comment. It's very true even with a great memory with all the software and PC stuff that goes along with radio now it is hard to keep it all straight.
      Mike

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  6. Hello Mike, this morning I changed the pitch of the side tone of the Morse Machine by pushing the wrong buttons. So I will have to use the manual to change it back. hi 73, Bert

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    1. Yes it can get frustrating when you do something and not sure how to get back to the way it worked.
      Mike

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