Tech Net News 09-15-2018


Don’t forget to sign up for the October 7th Lifewalk by using the contact us form or by reaching out to Randy Patterson, KE5JIT, directly. The club needs your participation!

And if you need a public service event right now—you just can’t wait until October 7th—the Plano Balloon Festival could use your help. You can sign up and find out more at their website. The festival is coming up next weekend, so you’ll need to get moving.

Next weekend—Saturday the 22nd, to be exact—also marks our next Lecture and Lab. Come out to the Dallas Medical Center from 10 am to 3 pm and you can join in the DARC RTL-SDR Roundup: a chance to get technical help, show off your skills, share your discoveries, and indulge in all things SDR.

The contest calendar shows that quite a few QSO parties are available. You can choose from Iowa, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Washington State, or a generic Collegiate QSO Party for members of college or alumni clubs. You are required to provide your own beverages.

In news from the world of ham radio:

Please be alert to the possibility of Hurricane operations, especially on 14.325 and 7.268 MHz! Check for updates from SATERN about relief operations for Hurricane Florence, and check the ARRL news, too.

In news from the world of science:

The 2018 IgNobel Prizes have been awarded! Have you ever given yourself a colonoscopy? Have you ever made a voodoo doll of your boss? Well, if you have, don’t worry—it’s all for scienceRead about the winners and pick a favorite; we’ll be talking about them at the next Geek Net.

Bird migration is under way! It turns out that many birds find that the best weather for migration is right behind the worst weather. A new website,, focuses on using this fact to provide predictions about where birds will migrating. Some national monuments will even be turning off their lights this month to avoid confusing migrating birds.

Our robot overlords haven’t arrived, yet, but they’re already helping to find mysterious bursts of radio waves that appear to come from distant galaxies.

And if you’re not worried about robots, you could worry about plants instead. New research has shown that plant cells use electrochemical signals to tell the rest of the plant that they’ve been hurt, much like animal cells do. This work extends some of the prettiest and awesome-ist Nobel prize-winning chemistry ever: the discovery of Green Fluorescent Protein.