Radio W4KAZ

Thanks for stopping by the virtual KazShack. Feel free to comment - I often approve them.

A Sheltered Life

While trying to hook up an el-cheapo home theatre sound system, I ran into something new[to me].

Just had never seen anything like it. An unknown connector for the FM antenna. It looks a little like a common RCA plug-but it is not.  WTF!?!

It appears the FM antenna socket is a male “PAL” connector..  O’course, not having even the slightest idea what it was, a strong urge developed as I considered ripping apart the brand-new box and replacing the “funky unknown” connector with either an F, BNC, or RCA connector.

Not so fast soldering-iron-breath!

Sanity soon returned, and a few minutes spent on yahoo searching the information gold mine of the internet turned up a name, i.e., the PAL connector as well as several vendors eager to part with them for a few green-stamps.  So, put away the screwdriver and soldering iron for now.  Cha-ching.  Connector in the mail.

Anyway, its always a jolt when you run across something “new” that has been in such widespread use.  I suppose Europeans would have seen these more commonly than here in North America, but I’m still a bit surprised it took me 50 years to run across one personally.

The whole thing is only noteworthy because the FM antenna provided is a single wire cut the length of a quarter wave somewhere in the FM band.  It works for strong local stations, but is basically a crappy enough antenna I’d like to replace it.  Probably put a loop or folded dipole in the attic, since the house has a 300 ohm twinlead run already handily prewired, dating the abode as being from the pre CATV days.  May as well use it.

The options right now for attic antenna include a folded dipole turnstile, a single loop, a pair of loops offset 90 degrees, or possibly a kludge of those choices.  Maybe an MP3 player in random mode would be a better choice -  local FM leaves much to be desired for personal tastes.  But that would leave one less antenna project to toy with, and the antenna project is the ulterior motive.

May 2010 – Dayton Or Bust

Well, its a bust for 2010.

Kinda wanted to go, since it would be a 10 year anniversary.    A meaningless thing, but ten is such a pleasing number in base 10 arithmetic.  Since I am not going, I’ll just think of it in hex. This is really anniversary number ‘0A’, and there are six more to go before we get to ‘hex10’.  That may be about when I get back anyway.

A  second personal grievance about missing 2010 is knowing that there will be no meeting with Macho Cuesew and  Leche Dinero in person.  This is a possible once-in-a-lifetime chance that will slip by.  I have it on good authority that Dr. DX will also be at Dayton this year, as well as Bigg Gunn and the entire staff of the Fi-ni-report.

Also gonna miss buying a beer at 10:00am from the high school band booster club.  That availability seemed amusing/perplexing to an NC raised companion, but seemed like a breath of fresh air from the ‘good ole days’ for a south Louisiana native.  Breakfast of Champions…. ahhh, the good ole days, before political correctness ran amok through the feckless sheep!

Unfortunately it may be hard to even get a vicarious Dayton experience this year. Since circa 2009 current hamblog chic is to belittle the Hamvention recaps posted by bloggers who enjoy their Dayton experiences.  A fascinating glimpse into human nature.

Yeah, I can see where it might be repetitious and tedious to some folks.   Sure, you may live only a hundred miles away and hamvention is getting old for you after having been for 30 consecutive years.  I get it.    I’ve always enjoyed seeing after action reports.  For me, there’s usually something of interest to be seen, or a worthwhile anecdote to relate. Who can resist snapping a few photos of well preserved boat anchors?

I’m not sure why there’s so much intolerance out among the more self important bloggers.   Whatever floats their boat is fine.  But I’d expect that for every self superior grumpy Old Fart  there are ten or more casual drive by readers who will enjoy a first hand Hamvention account of every bit of seediness, geekiness, and OF’s foibles to be found on parade at Hamvention.

So if you blog, don’t be put off by the Nattering Nabobs of Negativity – post a hamvention review.  Sure, some OF is sure to whine again about the boring and repetitious nature of all your hamvention comments.  Is the opprobrium of politically correct-ified OF blog police really a valid reason to place restrictions upon yourself?  After all, they are not obligated to read every bit of flotsam and jetsam to turn up in their feeds or email.  What about the folks who might actually enjoy the recap?

Better yet.  Just to further annoy the Nattering Nabobs make it into multiple posts.  Maybe even include some photos of some dorks in full geek regalia, or a photo of the remote Hamvention parking lot that looks like Dresden after the firebombing.  It is all part of the ambiance of the Dayton hamvention experience.  Or for 2010, lack thereof.

This year the offsite QRP’r seminars sound interesting, in particular I’d like a chance to chat with NE1RD about field operations.  In 2008 we discovered that the “Four Days In May” QRP sub-convention was worth hitting.  The home brew contest entries were worth the trip.

Any sitings of Macho Cuesew and Leche Dinero should  be documented thoroughly!  😮

Bandwidth Returned to Amateur Usage

Bolshevik Baghdad Bob Been Banished……

Funny how the Bolsheviks hate being parodied.  Truly remarkable. Some of the e-mails are priceless examples of “liberal” “tolerance”. [Hint: neither word is actually appropriate.]

For a less offensive example of Bolshevik discourse, here is a case in point:–>

But then political discourse, while more appropriate in a blog than on 75m nets, is not really appropriate in a ham radio blog.  Now is it?   Bolshevik Bob will need to start his own blog elsewhere.  All hints of Bolshevism will be banished from this small slice of the world at large.

Baghdad Bob


Best of Baghdad Bob

Windows 7 GodMode

Leave it to the RedmondGeeks to create a useful tool but leave it undocumented rather than make it easily available.  And a big thanks to NumberOneSon for showing me the trick.

There’s a feature for Windows 7 users called GodMode, which is simply a tool/folder that has a lot of the more useful system administration tasks grouped together in one place.  [As opposed to navigating five screens to get to them.]

All that is required to use the feature is to create a folder then re-name it.  See the link for the details or just goog up the word “godmode” for yourself.  No use re-inventing the wheel here.

[hey!  I didn’t name it…]


Here is an interesting twist on a technically sound idea that was ground up and spit out by the jaws of the Politically Incorrect low IQ pitbull watchdogs. Maybe zapping pellets of frozen gas will be less objectionable to the mundanes than the low yield fission devices from the original concept. Interesting that it now appears to be within the reach of current technology.

So here we sit fifty years later, still stuck in the bottom of the gravity well, while all of creations’ limitless bountiful resources go spinning around the solar system.

Let them eat cake.


(Apologies to the foreign audience, this contains intentional mis-spelling and slang…)

First there was the E-vul Big Blue. Then the dred MyCrowsofft. E-vul Bigg Oyl. E-vul Bigg Pharma.

But with so many looking to get something for nothing these days, maybe Bigg GooG is positioned to be more hazardous in your day to day lives.. Use those apps with caution kiddo.

That is not to say there are no reasons to use any of the Bigg GooG apps. Rather, maybe take time to think on the ramifications of being hyjacked. If your use of a service is compromised, can any real damage be done? If the answer to that is “yes” or “maybe”, you should be hearing Robot in the background – “Danger Will Robinson…”

And yes, that applies to blog software. You DO look at the PHP code before installing it, don’t you? If you find a program/plugin with binary encoded data embedded within it, be wary.

For those who have never read Heinlein: TANSTAAFLThere Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch

2009 – The Ascendency of Idiocy

New Year…..probably not so happy.

80 years of FDR socialism come home to roost in 2009.

Having been a pauper at the start I suppose I’m better prepared for it than most. It has been nice to be so fortunate as to improve substantially upon that meager station in life. The current successful defensive investment strategy will probably prove meaningless once my property is seized by the state. Yet I persist, as hope springs eternal. Is it time to go long again? Is a PE ratio below 8 going to last? It do seem unlikely in a stable market, and one must hedge. The real question is “Is this a stable market?”. My doubts are no doubt clear. 😉

Maybe the glee of having been correct several times will be enough to sustain the family once the actual assets themselves are seized at gunpoint by the neoCommie mob. Maybe it would be best to just spend it all now. Cash everything out and live large for a few years. Eat the seed corn. That goes completely against my naturally frugal nature, but it does seem to be a viable option. The current penalties for early withdrawal may, in hindsight, appear quite reasonable once we get to 2015. Alternatively, what hard asset will hold its value, but also escape the wrath of overzealous or targeted taxation by a failing government infrastructure? Gold coin is so impractical. Buy seed corn maybe?

Time for tea, as the Titanic slips beneath the waves! More Circus, less Bread pleeeeze! 😮

One thing is certain. It will be interesting to watch those who have no experience with poverty cope, their pockets full of hope and very little change. The bottom is completely unfamiliar territory for so many today. Most folks think they have it tough, but “tough” is a very subjective thing. All things considered, I would rather have it “tough” here in one of the wealthiest places known in the history of mankind. It sure beats the crap out of living in a cave in the desert, or a squat in the rain forest. Even the tar paper shack in the sugar cane field was better than that. It at least had screens on the door and windows. It had a door and window to put screen on. Livin’ large, relatively speaking.

What’s up with all the whining about de-regulation? Are there really less regulations than there were in 1930? Than in 1950? 1970? 1990? 2000? People really seem to believe this claptrap, even though every day anecdotal experience is enough to disprove the assertion. More stupid laws that won’t be enforced equally will solve no problems. Are the stupid laws worse than the unequal enforcement?

If it were not for the rapidly approaching demise of “the press”, their new position as the Josef Goebbels wing of the neoCommunist party might be alarming. Fortunately that seems to be a self correcting problem. Good riddance.

I also ponder the reception such ideological radicals as Jefferson, Adams, and Franklin would receive in today’s political environment. Their ideals are so far outside the realm of today’s prominent domestic ideologies that they would once again be quite radical. Would they now be dismissed by being labeled as “kooky libertarians”, and then pilloried in the public square? It seems likely that is exactly what would happen.

Yet their arguments are still timeless. Not bad for a bunch of non-technical barbarians from the edge of the frontier, despite their personal failings. I should be so lucky.

They did foresee the end of their experiment in personal liberty, but they left no indication of how long they thought it might actually last. That is now an un-answerable question, but one that is fascinating. Once America is just like every other socialist shithole or tinpot dictatorship across the planet, the experiment is over. Will the experiment ever again be resurrected? I suspect not, as human nature seems to be drawn to lording over one another. The historical precedent on that is clear – the experiments in individual liberty are damn few and far between.

Adam Smith would be tarred and feathered today. Too “mean spirited”.

…and thus the ideological solipsism shall end. This is to be the one and only political diatribe ever to “grace” this area. It is now to be henceforth and evermore an ideology free zone…. at least until the lights go out permanently. At which point it is all moot anyway.

psssst!…….George Bush killed the dinosaurs!

Peasants With Pitchforks

Greetings Comrades!  More information is now available from our sources at the Ministry of Truth.

Many thanks to our ardent supporters in San Fransisco.  Without fine citizens such as these, suppressing the money grubbing capitalist Kulaks would be far more difficult.  We are only disappointed to see no one had their turtle costume for this event.

The Ministry of Truth has issued a statement that will be of interest to all GoodThink Peeps in the Republic.  We now know that the Administration hopes that we will benefit from the Benevolence of Dear Exalted Leader forever! This will be made possible through the work of our fine scientists pioneer work with amateur operators from the 75 meter nets!

We have word direct from the Ministry of Trooth that Our Benevolent Dear Exalted Leader ObaMao is himself quite please with the ringing endorsement given to the administration of the New Peeps Republic by Comrade Castro, the original el Jeffe’ himself!  This most unexpected vote of confidence in the direction of the New Peeps Republic is another indictation of the historical nature of the changes sweeping clean the face of the Peeps!

Finally, we need to ask you hear the words of the Great Satan, idol of the money grubbing capitalist Kulaks.  It is imperative you become familiar with the arguments of the Great Satan, lest you be unable to refute his arguments should you hear them mentioned.



A New Day Dawns

Greetings comrades!  A new day dawns as the work to overthrow the bourgeois Republic of Kulaks gains unstoppable  momentum!
Comrade Most Exalted Leader today will host a ceremony to celebrate the passage of the Enabling Act.  I’m sure all of the racist Kulaks will somehow see significance in this day, just completely by coincidence coinciding with the anniversary of the 1933 Enabling Law passed by the Reichstag.
Dismiss these foolish comparisons!  Our own fearless Diet leadership has crafted a more masterful  ‘Law for Removing the Distress of the People and the Reich’ which bears absolutely no resemblance to that used by previous National Socialists to overthrow their own republic.    Our leaders have done a masterful job of crafting a much more indirect route to the creation of The Peoples paradise as foreseen by Fearless Leader Most Exalted ObaMao.  Previous governments foolishly chose a direct approach, penning only a single page.  Our Enabling Law is several THOUSAND pages.  The Kulaks will never be able to unravel this Gordian knot before it is too late!
Says a government spokesman:  “The government will make use of these powers only insofar as they are essential for carrying out vitally necessary measures…The number of cases in which an internal necessity exists for having recourse to such a law is in itself a limited one.”
So comrades, go forth and cast aspersions on all Kulaks who would question the wisdom of our own superior  Ermächtigungsgesetz.  Be certain to collect and make note of their names, as preparations for “shovel ready” work camps are being made!

Link for more information….