Florida or bust. Also, ham radio is under attack.


It's been a while since my last post, but the major news is that I've moved to Melbourne, FL for a new and exciting opportunity. With the move, it's given me an unique opportunity to reorganize and rethink the setup of my electronics lab. I've decided to try out a server rack for my test equipment and a "basic" table for my soldering setup. 

I've decided to put a hold on setting up my ham station with my FT-991A, because I may be moving to a different place nearby soon.

This is not a drill: Ham Radio Is Under Attack!

About 2 hours away from me in Ocala, FL, it has come to my attention recently that the hobby is under attack from what I understand to be from what kids these days would call a "Karen", and to makes matters worse it's happening in a HOA. (flashbacks to senator Bill Nelson striking down the Amateur Radio Parity Act) From what I understand so far, in this Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) case, the complainant (and aggressor) is blaming their insulin pump problems on a ham radio operator that lives in the same neighborhood. Upon watching the story from the local news station that covers Ocala, I chuckled to myself that the media was running with a supposed technical report from an engineering consultant that used words like "could" and "might" when pointing out the source of the RFI to the Ham radio operator and his HF rig.

Also, the news station didn't do very good job by not releasing the full report, it looks like only the abstract was shown, and that definitely doesn't tell the full story:

Source: WFTV 9 ABC, and Sublight Engineering PLLC

So I can use "could" and "might" in a legal case with some technobabble and win a legal case you say? Well hopefully not.

Don't worry, I'm trying my best to not resort to ad hominem attacks, like in the Twitter and Facebook comments pertaining to said story.

I really hope that the consultant releases the full report so that the public and media run with a sensationalized headline based from an abstract. It's not the first time that it's happened and definitely not the last time...

In my opinion this report, if we were to go by the abstract, seemed to completely undermine the credibility of the HOA and the complainant. Apparently this consulting firm/individual does RF exposure assessment and interference determination, but from my own observations... the lack of spectrum plots, radiation patterns, etc makes this report more like a really rough guess (Well 600 watts is a lotta power, must be it boys, CASE CLOSED! Q.E.D)

I will give credit to Sublight Engineering PLLC for a very good links page on pointing the common man to reputable sources on RF exposure and Public Health. Just to put in another jab and criticism, pretty sure the complainant Karen would never believe those sources, especially the 5G article.

The other part about this story that got me spun up was the fact that... Well Ham radio operators aren't predominately young folks... most are in the elderly age category... which has a statically non-zero amount of folks with diabetes and that also use... Insulin Pumps? So, this begs the question of... Have Ham radio operators run into problems with their insulin pumps while transmitting on HF? 
Also, there are other reasons why Insulin pumps can go haywire... and especially since insulin pumps have become IoT devices, this opens up another can of worms... They can be hacked?