QSO Today Virtual Ham Expo

August 8th & 9th in cyberspace

The QSO Today Virtual Ham Expo is coming to your desktop, laptop, tablet, or smartphone August 8th and 9th. In light of SARS-COVID-19, there most likely won’t be any live hamfests any time soon, but we can gather in cyberspace at the Virtual Ham Expo.

You attend the Virtual Ham Expo by logging on to the Expo’s web address. When you log in, your computer will be transformed into virtual convention center.

The Virtual Ham Expo will mimic almost all the functions of a livespace hamfest. (Sorry — no muddy parking lot, and no high-priced food truck lunch!) Over 70 world-class speakers will be making presentations. (I’ll be making a presentation too.) Here’s a look at a virtual presentation hall.

There are presentations for everyone from total beginner to grizzled veteran. There will be question and answer sessions after each presentation. (We’re not completely sorted on whether those sessions will be via text chat or video, but it will be one or the other.)

There will be an exhibit hall with lots of ham radio vendors present. Just as at a livespace hamfest, each vendor will have a booth. Here’s a sneak preview of ours.

When you “go to” our booth, you’ll see something like this:

The line of buttons across the bottom will take you to various web destinations or downloads, depending on how the vendor set up the booth. In the case of our booth, you can see samples of our books. There’s also a “Chat” button on the far right. If you click that during show hours, you can video chat with Kerry or me.

You do need to register in order to attend, but registration is free. You can learn more about the ARRL Sanctioned Virtual Ham Expo and register at:


Errata in Early Editions of Extra Course

Well, we strive for perfection, but sometimes we miss. The question committee released a very late, second set of corrections that we failed to incorporate in the early editions of the new Extra course. Because once things start to unwind, they seem to become determined to unwind more, the distributor for the audio program, trying to substitute our corrected audio, created a hopeless mess. The corrected 2020 audio, is where the old 2017 audio should be, and the uncorrected audio is still in the 2020 slot. Changes there are taking months because they are overwhelmed with submissions due to the lockdowns. Who’d have expected that?

In any case, if you would like fresh, corrected audio, for now, buy the old audio edition.

Print and e-book editions are all corrected. If you have a Kindle edition with errors, just delete the book from your device and re-download it.

  • E3C09: They actually had this one wrong in the last question pool, and we didn’t fix this in the first edition of the new one. An X3 flare is 50 percent greater than an X2, not twice as great as they said in the last pool.
  • E4D06: The correct answer is “intermodulation” not “intermodulation distortion.”
  • E4C10: I don’t remember what was wrong about that one, but the correct answer is “Receive bandwidth can be set to match the modulation bandwidth, maximizing signal-to-noise ratio and minimizing interference.”
  • E4C08: An SDR receiver is overloaded when input signals exceed the reference voltage of the analog-to-digital converter.
  • E8C10: Data rate may be increased without increasing bandwidth by using a more efficient digital code. The old version said “symbol rate.”

In the explanation of E5B03 (converting an impedance in polar form to an equivalent admittance) the impedance of the example circuit is about 1000 ohms and the admittance is 0.001 siemens with a phase angle of +14 degrees.

Our apologies!

Remote Ham Exams

More and more clubs are offering remote testing service. It is not “online testing” and there is no such thing as “walk-in” (no appointment needed) testing. You’ll be taking the exam while being monitored live via video conferencing software, which means you need access to, at a minimum, a computer, webcam, microphone, and fast internet connection.

Procedures are evolving by the week, so going into more detail at this time would be pointless. I suggest you check out this link for more information and to find a group offering remote testing.


Kudos to the folks at HamStudy.org for developing software to expedite the remote testing process!