Last Tuesday, at our ham radio meeting, there was what was called Beginners' Night. None of this was really relevant to my situation, since I couldn't operate any of the radios; however, someone was demonstrating packet with a computer. Bingo! We talked for a while, and then Gary and I left the meeting because a lot of other people wanted to talk to the guy who was demonstrating the system, and there really wasn't anything else for us to do.
Since then I have been quietly obsessing over Packet. I dug out a site that, I think, Clipper sent us, with Packet articles and links; unfortunately it is not a site that I can use, since all the instructions are diagrams, and not in text format. So I wrote to Dave, who did join the TT-Radio list a while ago, asking him for some instruction. I meant to write this privately but I replied to one of his communications and so it went out over the Inc., which was okay, because now you all know what I said. So far I have received no response.
Then I went to our own radio club's web page, and there I found that the guy who was demonstrating the Packet system was willing to give instructions to the club. I immediately wrote to him, and he replied, saying that I was the only one who had shown any interest. I then replied to that, and said well, if he ever had any more interest and would pick a time and place for the classes, would he please let me know, since I didn't want to miss anything. Tonight I received his reply, saying that he would be willing to teach me on a one-on-one basis, so now we are arranging that. We also went into Radio World, which is our local ham store, to ask about packet interfaces. They told me to pick what packet modes I was going to use, then come back and talk to them and they would help me choose the correct interface. Now, I know that there is a way whereby you can use your sound card and software only for Packet, but this is not the way I really want to go. Therefore I will fund my own Packet interfaces, and when all this is done, and whe n I know what modes I am going to use, and when we have started the instruction, I will give another update.
Meanwhile, I am still going to investigate Internet Relay Link Protocol, because I think it might be a great way for some of us who don't have our advanced licences to talk to each other. And in any case--it's damned fascinating!!
Best regards, Shirley (VE3GFS)