Thursday, May 26, 2005

Hamming It Up at Radio Meets: "If you think you know what a nerd is, try visiting a swap meet or convention where amateur radio operators like to hang out.

"You will not see many people wearing fitted Gap shirts and fancy eye wear at the MIT Swapfest here or at the Dayton Hamvention in Ohio. Both are occasions for amateur, or ham, radio buffs to buy gear and trade tips for improving their transmissions to places that phones and computers often can't reach, particularly during emergencies.

"Despite threats to ham radio bands from RF interference caused by technologies such as broadband over power lines, or BPL, the number of Federal Communications Commission amateur radio licenses last year topped more than 683,000, an all-time high. But unless you visit events like the MIT Swapfest or the Dayton Hamvention, you may never encounter these übernerds directly."

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