I grew up converting WW2 Command Radios for amateur use, then building transmitters out of TV sweep tubes. It was a great learning experience. Most Hams today are appliance operators or CBers with better bandwidth and power. The experimenters are few and far between. The thought of 300GHz and above is daunting as Si probably doesn't have enough electron mobility. Will be interesting to see what could come from the experimenters in the future.
Look, we all know the ham radio has devolved as a way to attract young people into electronic technology. That path has been killed. It is no more. We should stop lamenting this and just accept that ham radio is a niche hobby that will always be popular with a few souls who enjoy all the varied aspects of the hobby. Besides, I doubt we need a whole bunch of new RF designers banging on the doors of companies not looking to hire.
Most of us "RF" types grew up fascinated with 2-way radio, and electronic circuits. This is our passion and what we are. Today I see younger technical types only interested in showing others how to surf the internet. Even when I meet some of today’s younger hams, they are mostly going to buy something “off the shelf”, rather than build. We find tomorrow’s experienced two-way types will mainly come from the military. Ed.
Everyone involved in some kind of HAM radio knows the enormous spectrum of all technologies involved in our spare time hours. From antenna to RF amplifier design, from mixer input stages to GHz dishes. And even more: Restoring WW-II equipment and even collect and restore clandestine transceivers and crypto equipment as on www.cryptomuseum.com
Have fun !!
Within the last year or so, DHS has quietly forced amateur repeaters off of commercial television towers, on the premise that commercial TV is important for "public emergency" communication, and is therefore a strategic asset with controlled access to the facilities. The result is, of course, that hams (who are the real tactical emergency communications asset) have been forced to relocated their repeaters to less desirable and often less effective locations. Yeah, I feel safer already.
I hope someone soon compares the federal attitude towards hams on a "then and now" basis.
I hope the RSGB is successful in its efforts. As someone coming back to the hobby, I find the equipment, and operating options to be much greater than when I was first licensed in 1956.
The wide range repeater options and capabilities on 144MHz and 440MHz are mind boggling. So I am having to learn yet again.
Ken - W8VMM
The UK's Radio Society of Great Britain is currently carrying out extensive discussions on its future. http://www.rsgb.org/ The aim is to create the sort of RSGB that is not only relevant to current members, but also attractive to new ones.