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The Blare Blog

Center of the Bla Bla Galaxy

For Lack of Better Words

JULY 2022

Sunday July 31, 2022 4:50 PM CDT -- Marketed Kits --
Mark the Moderator takes a lunge at the kit question:

Are kits legal? The FCC says.....

    “Any number of electronic parts, usually provided with a schematic diagram or printed circuit board, which, when assembled in accordance with instructions, results in a device subject to the regulations in this part, even if additional parts of any type are required to complete assembly.”

The FCC goes on to say.....

“Equipment authorization is not required for devices that are not marketed, and are not constructed from a kit, are built in quantities of five or less for personal use.”
I interpret this as if you don't design it yourself, for yourself, .....if you got it from a MARKETED kit like SStran, Ramsey, Sean Cuthbert(who designed his AM transmitter and sells them on Ebay), for examples, they are not legal.
Not marketed and constructed from a kit, meaning, a kit that someone else designed that is marketed and you put together is technically illegal. You have to be the engineer and build it yourself and you alone use it.
But, the FCC defines a kit as an assembly of parts and a circuit board that you put together from instructions....That seems to contradict the FCC's own rule. You first have the kit definition but then says that
is not legal as it was "marketed".
Do I need a lawyer here?

- Mark

Trying to make sense of it ties the brain into knots. I keep coming back to that line about "Equipment authorization is not required for devices that are not marketed, etc.", but I don't think so-called 'authorization' is required for any type of part 15 intentional-radiator (otherwise known as a transmitter), but for fully-made transmitters 'certification' is required before marketing is allowed. The other word, authorization, applies to transmitters in the licensed services but also common carrier transmitters which are covered under part 15, except that they are not intentional radiators. And yes, as Rich points out, the part 15 rules contain a detailed description of what a kit is, thus opening a kit category under part 15.Do we really think a lawyer can sort it out?

Sunday July 31, 2022 11:15 AM CDT -- Shifting Hypocrisy --
In a July 28 blog titled 'More Misinformation', Artisan Radio touches upon a supposed transmitter kit being lauded at 'Hobbycaster's' shifty website. Dubbed the 'BT6000', this kit is not to be confused with Philip's Wireless Speakers or a model of Brothers Printer bearing the same name, and is said to be an improvement of the classic AMT3000 & 5000, which received never a good mention at the Hobby Transmitter Challenge. Why would anyone improve upon kits that were deplored continually in every possible aspect. They claimed that the 5000 was not truly Class E, the manual was incomplete and packed with false claims, and most of all kits were not legal in the eyes of the FCC. Since the air has settled following the as yet mysterious closing of SSTran, maker of the much derided products, Hobbycaster has turned to promoting a forthcoming kit based on the scorned originals. The question of intellectual property rights comes to the fore. And we need ask, has the FCC decided to allow kits? 

Friday July 29, 2022 8:31 AM CDT --
I love radio - its immediacy and especially its intimacy.
It is part of your life, whispering into your ear. You can't see it, but equally importantly it can't see you.

- Malcolm Turnbull, Former Prime Minister of Australia

Friday July 29, 2022 8:21 AM CDT -- Offline Safety --
This website goes offline during storms to protect sensitive server equipment from possible damage. To review our policy we sought advice from Artisan Radio, experienced in the professional computer field:

There definitely is a risk, unless you're using a laptop on battery only. 
A power surge caused by lightning or an outage can easily destroy
I usually turn off everything during thunderstorms.

- Artisan Radio

Friday July 29, 2022 12:56 MIDNIGHT -- Trajectory --
On a night in 1960 I scanned the AM radio dial across highly active receptions from all over the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and I think even Cuba was coming in. At 11:30 PM I'd reached 780 and Chicago identified itself - WBBM. A brief pause and then a voice from center stage - "Now, Nordine." I took my hand away from the dial knob and listened. What followed for the next half-hour formed the yolk of my radio education still resonating these decades later, an audio tour that connected minds across the aether through a switchboard of thoughts, thinking, wondering, discovering, realizing and a bit of knowing - I was spoken to in a new kind of language modulated against musical undertones and took the experience to work with me the next day at the FM station where a co-worker knew who I was talking about when I relayed the experience - "Oh yeah, Nordine does a lot of radio and TV commercials and has a couple of LPs called 'Word Jazz'". To the record store. Another guy I knew was an ad agency executive who'd actually visited Ken Nordine's fabled house in Highland Park and been to the now-famous third-floor tape studio where Ken produced 'Now, Nordine'. My home had a third-floor, so I took my Wollensak Tape Recorder up there and began experimenting with microphones. The idea, as I understood it, was to get inside of that microphone as closely as possible - to press the larynx right up with the voice-coil and dominate the acoustic space. I settled on uni-directional mic patterns as most conducive to the intimacy sought, but that deep depth of register was the key ingredient belonging exclusively to Nordine and kept all the rest of us sounding thin by comparison. Not only had he made me conscious of how I sounded, but how I wrote and spoke - how words were connected into phrases in a way that transferred mutually realized images to the minds of listeners. And other technechalia became part of it - the WBBM shows were monaural to fit the media as it was. Then soon stereophonic FM opened a broader soundscape and Nordine brought a new binaural edition of his art to the newly established NPR Radio Network under the title 'Word Jazz'. From my perch at a public radio station I noticed that the local NPR affiliate opted not to carry 'Word Jazz' so I applied for the privilege and quickly received a giant carton of reel-to-reel tape direct from the Nordine Groop in Chicago. To celebrate this proud association I arranged to speak by phone for a 45-minute visit with Ken Nordine on New Years Eve 1984 as his wife was preparing scrod. A tape recording of that conversation exists in the archives of the Internet Building right here at KDX Worldround Radio. What I think distinguishes Ken Nordine from the regular crowd is that he can see that we are all on a trajectory. We came from somewhere, and much of his wordcraft asks and ponders about it. We are headed somewhere, and he quizzes the possibilities while always detailing wherever it is we think we are right now. He was a trajectionist. Narrating a tour we are on without knowing what the tour is really all about.  
As of Now
- Ken Nordine

Thursday July 28, 2022 12:08 NOON CDT -- Class E Transmitters --
Richard Powers writes about Class E:

Hi Carl. Artisanradio's blog just made a couple posts concerning range capabilites of part 15 transmitters, in which he pointed out an important factor often forgotten, it's not just the quality and efficiency of the transmitter itself but the capabilities of the receivers used as well; both play their part. This, in the way, became evident at Yellowstone (where the whip and mast part 15 AM transmitters originated) in the early 1970s when a survey concluded that about 10% of car radios could not receive their broadcast (this was because the fcc had instructed them to change their frequency to 1606 or 1610 in an attempt to appease the NAB by getting them out of the broadcast band (which at the time only went up to 1600).

Artisan also mentioned something else:
 "..SSTran transmitters used Class E amplfiers, which, at least theoretically, can have an efficiency of 90% or more.  More mw's out means a greater field strength, and more range.  One of the issues with Class E amplifiers, however, is that they can be difficult to tune properly.  Hobbybroadcaster found that out in their flawed AM Transmitter Challenge..."

It so happens that what Yellowstone and other parks, and the Hwy departments where using in the early 1970s (the ITT, DTI, and TSI transmitters) were all Class E transmitters!

Interesting technology, Richard and Artisan! The SSTran AMT5000 here at KDX came with a very detailed manual which I found very easy to follow in setting up Class E operation, and I spent a lot of time going over it since it was more complicated than other transmitters. I've found that some people who want to send out a radio signal have no knack for technical engineering and easily blame anyone but themselves for their bad results. Call them Class F.

Wednesday July 27, 2022 3:58 PM CDT -- I Feel a Eulogy Coming On --
Learning of Nordine's death shook today off of its watery foundation, given yesterday's rainy deluge. To me personally it's like hearing that Beethoven died or any other original genius who's influenced our own creative path. But this isn't it. I'll need time to reflect on this different world, without the best radio voice ever to visit by air.

Wednesday July 27, 2022 3:54 PM CDT -- Ab & Stract Hold a Coversation --
Mind Reading Lessons
- Ken Nordine

Wednesday July 27, 2022 3:27 PM CDT -- I Found Out 3-Years Late or Would Have Attended the Memorial Service --
All this time I've been going around telling people Ken Nordine is alive in his 90s. I was right, until three-years ago when he died age 98, which I learned minutes ago on YouTube.
The News Reaches Us Finally

Wednesday July 27, 2022 6:43 AM CDT -- He Has His Ego Under Control --
Word from Ken Nordine of Highland Park

Tuesday July 26, 2022 3:39 PM CDT -- About Legal Unlicensed --
Richard Powers speaks to the matter:

It seems to me the phrase "licensed by rule" has been used by the fcc numerous times, but I've not seen it used specifically in relation to part 15 AM.

One example:
"The Commission does not issue individual licenses for certain types of personal radio equipment and mobile units used in conjunction with licensed base stations. These types of transmitters are said to be "licensed by rule." Such services share the use of radio spectrum and one user is not denied use by the presence of prior users. These services do not have construction/coverage requirements. The following services are “licensed by rule”: • Maritime mobile services (domestic) • Aviation Services (domestic) • Family Radio Service • Radio Control Service • Citizens Band Radio Service • Low Power Radio Service (domestic) • Wireless Medical Telemetry Service • Medical Device Radiocommunication Service (MedRadio) • Multi-Use Radio Service (MURS) • Personal Locator Beacons (PLBs) • Dedicated Short Range Communications Services On-Board Units (DSRCS-OBUs)"
Information Source FCC

unlicensed or licensed by rule operations

(2) Unlicensed or licensed by rule operations The term “unlicensed or licensed by rule operations” means the use of spectrum on a non-exclusive basis under— (A) part 15 of title 47, Code of Federal Regulations ; or (B) licensing by rule under part 96 of title 47, Code of Federal Regulations
Information Source Cornell Law

Very interesting information, Richard, and previously not known by me nor probably most part 15ers. I would say that this level of knowledge is for insiders while the simpler comments I made take into account language we might use in communicating with the common public based on their limited notions about what is legal or illegal.

Tuesday July 26, 2022 8:52 AM CDT -- Fall --
Movie Centered Around a 2,000 Foot Tower

Tuesday July 26, 2022 8:39 AM CDT --
Permanent Daylight Time is Stalled

Tuesday July 26, 2022 8:31 AM CDT -- Historic Rain --
Today's startup of the KDX Website and streaming radio programs was delayed by continuing rain described by the National Weather Service as historic. Beginning about 2:30 AM CDT we have thus far experienced up to a foot of rain which is expected to continue during the morning hours. Some lightning has ocurred. Flash flooding is widespread and a few thousand are without power.

Monday July 25, 2022 9:43 PM CDT -- Movie About Being Record Producers --
Great World of Sound

Monday July 25, 2022  1:56 PM CDT -- Suspicious Radio Stations --
I'm just back from a visit to several part 15 radio station websites and were it not for my insider's awareness of how things have come to be defined in the minds of typical hobby station owners, I would be inclined to distrust the legality of these stations. In other words, if I were an ordinary member of the general public I would think these were "pirate" radio operations based on two words used in their self-descriptions: "legal, unlicensed". Being blunt, that sounds like a contradiction in terms. In fact, either term on its own gives rise to doubt. Claiming to be legal amounts to answering the unasked question, something advised against by lawyers. Admitting to be unlicensed is like a confession of guilt, since it is generally assumed that broadcasting requires a license. Most commonly the FCC notification is posted on a station's "About" page, which is also ill advised. Our advice would be to devote "About" to a description of what the station offers by way of format and purpose, i.e., "Top Hits of the 60s with Hourly News and Informative Entertainment". Way at the end of the menu tack on an "FCC Facts" page, noting that your station is "Authorized by the Federal Communications Commission under Rules and Regulations Part 15". Legality is assumed and licensure not under question. 

Monday July 25, 2022 1:16 PM CDT -- Sirius XM Bashes Terrestrial Radio --
AM & FM Radio a Waste of Time?

Monday July 25, 2022 12:43 NOON -- NRSC is Active --
What NRSC is Working On

Saturday July 23, 2022 10:02 AM CDT -- But How Far Does It Go? --
Somebody wasn't thinking when they wrote about this wireless device.
The Wireless Device in Question
Carl Does the Homework

Saturday July 23, 2022 9:55 AM CDT -- Hottest Yet --
105 Farenheit predicted for today, it's already up to 88.

Friday July 22, 2022 1:17 PM CDT -- Half a Second Without Electricity --
At 4:42 in the early morning we were watching a YouTube video when the power to the building went off. Half-a-second later the power came back. The video continued and the computer remained online without a stutter.

Friday July 22, 2022 1:15 PM CDT -- Catholic Authoritarianism --
American SCOTUS
The Nation

Thursday July 21, 2022 12:04 N CDT -- Short Trips Around the Dial --
Two local AM talkers (talk stations) which imitate each other have hosts who talk superficial trivia as if the audience consists of juveniles, when the reality is that real juveniles have never listened to AM radio and are busy "exterminating" whole populations in computer games while texting each other about suspicious activities concealed from parents. There may be life on this planet but not intelligence.

A very brief stop on a sports talk station fed my unending curiosity about how is it possible to talk incessently about simple children's ball games without at least sparking things up with drunken profanity. For the adult, all sports are a drinker's pastime but the sobriety required on radio results in shallow insipidity.

My takeaway from these radio moments is that dullardry is not as easy to sustain as it may first appear.

Thursday July 21, 2022 11:53 AM CDT -- Poking Around at Radio-Locator --
Never caught by boredom I was scrolling through radio stations at radio-locator.com and noticed some call letters from the distant past, once belonging to a legendary station that has since turned religious and renamed itself. The old letters are now reassigned to a 37-Watt LPFM station and although the programming in no way resembles what the original station was known for, the little station fills their "About" page with glorious details of the older station's popularity, and by so doing essentially lay claim to a past in which they had no part.

Thursday July 21, 2022 8:39 AM CDT -- An Ideal Mixing Board for Low Power Voice Radio --
Broadcast Tools ProMix-4

Wednesday July 20, 2022 10:29 AM CDT -- Playing the Part of Scientist --
Knowing only a little about things is a fun starting point for trying to imagine more about them. Two areas of interest come to mind. There's the radio frequency science touched upon in recent blogs about our transmitters, and human functioning in exposure to heat, ourself the subject of experiment. Let's use paragraphs to isolate these two explorations from one another.

In this paragraph allow me to layout my reasoning as to why our C.Crane FM1 performs observably better with its antenna placed vertically compared to the paltry result when adjusted horizontally. It's the wavelengths, so I think. Consider first the fact we are indoors and subject to reflections from walls, ceilings and floors, the building interior serving as a badly tuned wave-guide within which the signal travels on the way to randomly placed radios. During horizontal operation the floor-to-ceiling distance is less than one full wave at the FM frequency and so presents a badly phased circumstance in which cancelations filter the effeciency at an accelerated rate with distance through the rooms and halls. By the simple change of verticallizing the antenna the null portion of the radiance is reflected upward and downward, allowing the main donut-shaped-lobe to express itself at full-wavelength-plus in the more ample dimensions presented from wall-to-wall. That's all there is to it. 

Now what was the other thing? Oh ya... heat and its affects on human performance. For me, knowing the estimation to be scientifically subjective, 84o Farenheit is the critical point at which my enthusiasm drops off abruptly and even small projects appear too strenuous to attempt. Add to that a recent news report revealing research finding the threshhold of human health danger to be 88o F, lower than previously believed. Exposure to heat can result in spontaneous death. Everything needs to be postponed starting with this blog.

Tuesday July 19, 2022 5:27 PM CDT -- As Our Troubles Increase --
The problems set against humanity are increasing with no prospects for coming out of it intact. In a short while the world population will reach 8-billion at the most inopportune of times. Employing contraception and abortion, which have always been true human rights despite bad laws and ignorant men, would be valuable mechanisms for trimming unbridled reproduction, but theocrats in government and Christian fanatics have chosen now to posture themselves as belligerent enemies of humanity and the world. We've got to talk about pest control.

Tuesday July 19, 2022 5:23 PM CDT -- Self Managed Abortion Now Very Important to Know About --
Self Administered Abortion

Tuesday July 19, 2022 4:24 PM CDT --
If you think
         outside the box,
After taking it
                to a whole new level,
                You might find yourself
             on a slippery slope.

       - Carl Blare, 2003

Tuesday July 19, 2022 3:05 PM CDT -- Higher is Better --
By raising the C. Crane FM1 Transmitter 1-foot higher, signal strength at key reception locations increased by 6-dBu.

Tuesday July 19, 2022 2:43 PM CDT -- Weather in Various Places --
A look at Vancouver, BC, Canada, shows temperature of 67o. Is that right? Don't they use the Celsius scale up there? My Duck Duck Go must have done a conversion. Meanwhile, here in the Midwaste of the U.S. we have 92o and are keeping the equipment online for today although the rest of the week will be headed back up toward 100 F and we'll be locking down during the peak of it. Of course we checked Canada because Artisan Radio operates from there, and correspondent Mark is on the eastern side but I can't remember exactly where. Rich Powers, also known as End 80 Radio, is at Tybee Island, Georgia, with 90o. Somewhere near the New England States are both Bruuuce and Boomer, and it's 91o in Boston.

Tuesday July 19, 2022 10:59 AM CDT -- Twisted Polarity --
A transmitter of concern we've been writing about is our C.Crane FM1, located on the southern wall of the Internet Building and recently adjusted to radiate horizontally by simply orienting the onboard telescopic antenna appropriately. Since doing that, as we've already mentioned, trouble ensued. Most notably the field strength dropped to the extent that its signal was no longer receivable at the far northern wall on our Sangean ATS-505 desktop radio.

From a centrally located monitoring point under a ceiling light fixture we measured the signal strength from the FM1 using a TECSUN PL-310 radio, indicating 18 dBu, but only with the radio's antenna oriented vertically. If the radio was tilted into the horizontal plane the signal strength was less. A comparison reading was taken from the C.Crane FM2, located an equal distance away and also oriented horizontally, the TECSUN showed the strongest reception on the horizontal plane as would be expected. Therefore we surmise that physical circumstances near the FM1 are causing its polarity to twist from H to V.

By restoring the FM1 to vertical operation it is once more heard at the Sangean desk location.

Tuesday July 19, 2022 10:55 AM CDT --
People truly engaged in life have messy houses.
- Ottessa Moshfegh, writer

Tuesday July 19, 2022 9:46 AM CDT -- Democrats Plan to Restore Net Neutrality --
The Plan

Monday July 18, 2022 5:45 PM CDT -- Part 15 on the Lower AM Band --
Reacting to a discussion on another website about the well established advantages of broadcasting on the AM X-Band as opposed to the low end down around 540 kHz or so, I can only add that the way to do it with desired result is to use carrier current, an alternative Part 15 mode.

Monday July 18, 2022 4:58 PM CDT -- Heat Induced Delirium --
Women should not be forced to act as reception centers for incoming life if that's not what they want, but numerous forces work against them, bad court decisions and religious dictats true, but some of it occasionally from their own inner conflict of desiring mutually exclusive outcomes. Men are nature's unwitting dupes in the whole process because they wrongly estimate that women exist to provide comfort and pleasure for them personally, whereas in fact men are lured by the deceptions of biology as it blindly presses reproduction of species taking no regard for consequences at any scale. Women find themselves existing to serve the offspring which in one way are intruding strangers but in another take up the role of being cute and hungry. Dogs do much the same thing. Catholic and other Christian authoritarians soil the matter further by imposing guilt and claiming fraudulent authority over already beleaguered human breeding business. Porky bishops in their gay upholstery fabrics backed by legions of "fathers" and "sisters" have infiltrated the secular democratic republic of the United States holding men by the gonads and women by the wombs on behalf of the Nation State known as "The Vatican", a "kingdom" representing "God on earth", something akin to science fiction without science. 

Monday July 18, 2022 4:43 PM CDT -- Self Administered STA --
Given a knotty set of transmission problems KDX Worldround Radio has granted to itself a status of Special Temporary Authority to close KDX AM pending a number of repairs and upgrades, operate KDX-FM at below normal power until we determine why the C.Crane FM1 isn't radiating at its previous more robust strength, and until a second set of backup transmitters are placed into service to fill the gap during the entire restoration. Talking about this is the easy part. Doing anything is delayed by the attitude problem on the part of the station owner who'd rather not be bothered with it.Thing is, though, it's the only way he can expect to have decent radio programs for listening.

Monday July 18, 2022 3:51 PM CDT -- Security Report --
People receive so many Amazon deliveries they should probably have warehouse permits.
- neighborhood busybody on the watch

Monday July 18, 2022 11:53 AM CDT --
Television contracts the imagination and radio expands it.
-Terry Wogan, Irish broadcaster

Monday July 18, 2022 11:35 AM CDT -- Wi-Fi Tax Under Consideration --
Wi-Fi is a Part 15 Resource

Monday July 18, 2022 10:54 AM CDT -- FCC Proposes U.S. Broadband Standard --
100 mbps Down 20 mbps Up

Monday July 18, 2022 9:48 AM CDT -- Mistuned Cognition --
Our transmitter site at the rear indoor corner has been found inadequate to deliver the fine broadcast quality associated with KDX Worldround Radio. The corner itself is not the problem. The actual problem has to do with poor placement of  components in a high RF environment. Relocation of components will require support structure that presently does not exist. To further complicate an already compound set of problems there is no one available to undertake the re-design work, given the fact that I am too high in the executive ranks to do menial labor. But I do have a plan. For an undetermined length of time I will pace about, think a little, and formulate an approach. Check back with us every year. Meanwhile we may be off the air a lot.

Sunday July 17, 2022 8:45 AM CDT -- Do You Prefer Baked or Roasted --
Today was set for another 100o heat alert, but along came the rain and dialed things down to a lower high of 88o.
Not so lucky this forthcoming week as temperatures ratchet back up.

Sunday July 17, 2022 8:41 AM CDT -- If Remote Work is Too Quiet for You --
Free Office Noises

Friday July 15, 2022 8:37 AM CDT -- One Phone Call Away --
It's been announced that 9-8-8 will be the National Suicide Prevention and Mental Health Help line. But a recent experience of mine causes me to believe that 9-8-8 may often be outside the reach of the same people who need it. In my situation all communication was lost when the cable company totally removed my cable in what was supposed to be a simple re-attachment of a wire that had drooped to the ground. In order to reach the cable people I drove first to a grocery store where I was told there are no public phones. By good luck my automobile service station allowed me to use their phone to report the outage and get my cable restored. For three days I was cut off from the world. But a suicidal person might not find access to a telephone even if their desire to thwart their own plans was strong enough to reach out. There is a substantial liklihood that 9-8-8 will be beyond the reach of a large number of people who might need it.

Friday July 15, 2022 8:11 AM CDT -- As the COVID Mutates --
We are informed by an urgent sounding voice speaking by radio that the newest COVID Variant known as BA5 is the most contagious form yet and spreading rapidly.

Friday July 15, 2022 7:54 AM CDT -- Discovery of the Day --
Since the success in getting the C.Crane FM1 back in service we kept it on the air through the night broadcasting Tower Time from our KHZ/KDX Talking Tolking Clock. This morning at 6:55 AM CDT we switched on the Procaster AM Transmitter and right away the audio from FM1 became choppy and floppy. As a seasoned person of experience we immediately realized that radiation from the AM antenna, located only 1-foot from the FM1, was strongly interfering. Thinking back, we realize that the troubles began about the time we changed polarity of the FM transmission from vertical to horizontal. "Oh", we thought. "So that's it."

Thursday July 14, 2022 7:18 AM CDT -- FM1 In Recovery --
The C.Crane FM1 Transmitter called out to me not to abandon it, so I opened its egg-shell casing and looked again, seeing nothing particularly different than before. But each time I've re-assembled it and tested it for audio it either produced choppy meat-slicer sound or wouldn't turn on. Tonight's result started with the thing not turning on, but then it came to life, so I applied audio and set the modulation. Since then it's been sending crisp quality renditions by Abe Lyman and the California Ambassador Hotel Orchestra. For now it's back in the game serving KDX-FM. Kind of acts like an intermittancy, don't you agree?

Thursday July 14, 2022 7:20 AM CDT -- Mysterious Part 15 Signal from a Distant Galaxy --
Far Beyond FCC Jurisdiction

Tuesday July 11, 2022 7:24 PM CDT -- StereoTools AM Radio Audio Processing - Part 7 - Final --
Our Blog commentary combined with the links and references given throughout this subject point the way toward understanding and possibly utilizing StereoTools AM Audio Processing capability.

One aspect covered in the documentation which we consider worth empasizing is the greater advantage of employing StereoTools L+R Mixdown for blending the two stereo channels of your program feed for reasons well explained in the literature.

We also reiterate the need to study the FCC rules pertaining to modulation science unique to Amplitude Modulation, a requirement for generating an RF signal on the radio band.

Questions or other input to this subject are welcome.

Tuesday July 11, 2022 6:54 PN CDT --
You cannot prove a negative.
But how could it be a negative if you can't prove it's a negative?
- Carl Blare, author "The Positive Side of Negative Thinking"

Monday July 11, 2022 8:09 AM CDT --
The Beginnings of FM Stereo

Sunday July 10, 2022 7:29 AM CDT -- A Plate Full of Engineering --
Every Sunday afternoon is Maintenance Time at KDX and this week most of our job list pertains to computers. We'll be doing an inventory of USB Flash Drives so we'll know which standard each one is designed for, i.e., USB 2.0, USB 3.0, and so on. Then we'll look up manual information about the actual USB ports on the various computers to see what they support. We'll be placing an order for a handful of USB 3.0 Flash Drives in anticipation of a future Sunday when we'll install Windows 10 on one of them as part of restoring that computer back to service, as it no longer boots probably because the installed Windows 10 was not 'Activated' during the 90-day opening. And we'll be putting KDX into another of the drives. Also on the list is a check of the power cube for the C.Crane FM1 Transmitter to be sure the transmitter isn't being blamed unfairly for failing. And lastly we'll fully test and return to service the Ramsey FM35B Transmitter. But I don't work here. This is only a hobby. I could easily blow the whole day snacking and watching free movies. Even now I'm stalling by messing with The Blog rather than getting KDX ready for the morning's schedule. 

Sunday July 10, 2022 6:36 AM CDT -- Get in Line --
Message from a member of the general public:

Hello Mister Blare. You don't know me, but I read your blog and feel moved to respond to the post titled 'What Lies in Store'. I have an uncle who's a county judge here in Arizona and he was talking to a portulent Catholic bishop at our July 4th soiree, and they were discussing the idea of requiring people to apply for a license to have sex. They even thought it could be made part of the registry now in force for so-called 'sex offenders'. They mentioned that having sex without a license would be a crime for which an arrest warrant would be issued, and sex outside of marriage would be a sex offense with a prison term attached. The bishop was chewing on pork chops as he spoke, but I could still make out his words when he said he might call Amy about it. He knows Amy Coney Island the Supreme Court Judge because they were members together of some Catholic cult that believes women are the handmaids of men. I am very scared about the way things are going because I'm a woman who likes men who believe they are women trapped in men's bodies.

Sunday July 10, 2022 6:08 AM CDT -- Thumbs Up for Thumb Drives --
Artisan Radio has previous experience:

Read your blog post about running KDX off a thumb drive.

I'm running a backup version of Artisan Radio off a flash drive on one
of my laptops.  This was necessitated, however, as the BIOS on the
computer was locked with a password (which means it can't be modified),
and it was set to boot off either a network or USB. Basically, the
computer was a parts-only affair, thrown into an ebay transaction in
which I also purchased a working one.  It turned out the only thing
wrong with the thrown-in computer was the BIOS lock (it was also missing
its SSD but that was easy to add), and it works very nicely booting off
the thumb drive.

If you're going to do what I did, and what you're planning to do, you'll
need to use a USB 3.0 drive for speed - USB 2.0 is just too slow.  If
you're going to boot off it, you'll need to create a bootable version of
whatever operating sysem you're running on the drive - I used a program
called RUFUS to do that.  There are lots of other utilities, and I tried
a few, but RUFUS was the simplest to use, and the only one to work reliably.

Actually, Artisan Radio is not entirely on the thumb drive.  It's only
64GB, and not really big enough to store all the programming I need.
The programming is stored on the laptop's SSD.  The combination of thumb
drive/SSD makes the computer extremely fast, and as a bonus, it can be
moved around without fear of causing a hard drive head crash.

- Artisan Radio

Invaluable info, Artisan! I was giving no thought to what version of USB Drive I'd use (1.0, 2.0, 3.0 or whatnot) but of course it makes perfect sense now that you've mentioned it. Also, I was not planning to boot from the Flash Drive nor employ a SSD (Solid State Drive) but those are attractive enhancements that would sophisticate the entire project.

Saturday July 9, 2022 1:05 PM CDT -- What Lies in Store --

CARL:  The Blog welcomes Doctor Emmett Crojohnsanfone with his reaction to the Supreme Court's recent take down of the Roe decision. Doctor, it is an honor to have you at the microphone.

DOCTOR:  We are in greater danger from this Court than people realize. So far they have gone after easy pickings, since women's rights are already so discounted due to influences by church religions which have always considered women to be the property of men. But the end game for the right wing of the Court is to stomp out all health care on the premis that illness and injury are Acts of God and interference by health care professionals is a sin. In short, doctoring is being criminalized and physicians in the United States are destined to be declared felons.

CARL:  That's monstrous! Are there any acts of resistance open to us now that could ward off this apocalypse?

DOCTOR:  If the people could wake up and listen we might be able to reverse the course but there's no sign that that's happening. People are too much into their sports and staying current on streaming movies not to mention the latest news on rock stars and the royal family.

CARL:  What are you going to do?

DOCTOR:  I'm taking my family to live in a train caboose in the Alpine Mountains of Switzerland where we'll raise goats and try your idea of operating a radio station from a thumb drive.

Saturday July 9, 2022 12:20 N CDT -- What Did They Just Do? --

While drippy rain has made our campus squishy we've been setting up the latest certified refurbished computer with its Activated Windows 10 Operating System. Microsoft placed a notification along the task bar indicating that a Restart was needed for installation of updates. Why not now, I thought, calling for a ReStart, which happened in 20-seconds. But the notification was still showing, so I opened it and used the ReStart button it provided. The 2nd Re-Start lasted 1-hour 10-minutes! What was Microsoft doing inside my computer during all that time? When it finally re-started I looked for a message about what, exactly, happened in that length of time, but no explanation was offered.

Then as if it was reading my mind, the Boing Boing website gave directions for locating the homes of Supreme Court Justices.
The Blurry Ones
It's only a fantasy, but I like to imagine that if I was best friends with those odd cosplayers I might be able to help them overcome their dickiness. But that can't happen because I'm not going there and they're not coming here.

Saturday July 9, 2022 11:39 AM CDT -- Radio Station in a Thumb Drive --

As an experiment we plan to move KDX and all of its computer-based software and program files into a single USB Thumb Drive, known also as a Flash Drive. Then we'll copy KDX onto a 2nd USB Drive as a backup. Other parts of the experiment will include running KDX from each of our computers to demonstrate how flexible the thumb drive approach can be. We also expect that KDX could be taken out the door, for a car ride, and run from a friend's computer 10-miles away.
All About USB Flash Drives

Saturday July 9, 2022 9:35 AM CDT -- StereoTools AM Audio Processing Part 6 --

There is a reason the audio bandpass set in our use of StereoTool ranges from 40 Hz to 10,200 Hz. One might wonder why we're not passing the low end from 20 to 40 Hz, given that the range of human hearing extends down to 20 Hz, or up to 20 kHz at the top end for healthy ears (?)  The answer is a little bit due to ears but moreso on account of technical factors. In his 2010 INSIDE AUDIO column in TV Technology Dave Moulton describes the 10 octaves of the human audio spectrum.

Octave 1 from 20 to 40 Hz - Bottom end. Little musical content. Fundamental of kick drum. Mostly not played back by loudspeakers.

But even though it's not usually audible there might possibly be energy down in this region that causes unwanted push on compression and balance of the overall signal. We feel that filtering it out is the best action.

Octave 10 from 10,240 Hz to 20, 480 Hz - Extreme highs, airiness, hiss and sizzle. Little musical content. Upper part of "edge" of sound.

No voice or speech content resides in the top octave, therefore for KDX as a talk station the 10th octave is unecessary and if not filtered out would cause overly wide splashing of our AM radio modulation. Because there are no nearby radio stations on adjacent channels KDX is able to widen our signal width to include Octave 9.

Octave 9 from 5,120 Hz to 10,240 Hz - Highs, treble, metallic brightness, sibilance, musical content includes cymbals, upper end of snare drum, metal guitar strings, etc. Sometimes called brilliance.

StereoTools provides two locations where audio bandwidth may be set. We use the settings available for general audio processing. Persons utilizing StereoTools for processing AM Transmitter Audio would use the settings available on the AM Processor page.

- To Be Continued -

Saturday July 9, 2022 8:57 AM CDT -- Broken Transmitter --
Back when C.Crane Company first introduced the FM1 Transmitter we spotted one in the 'returned' listings for only $40, so we grabbed. It has provided many years of service even given its various short-comings, but this morning it took a dive and now won't stay turned on. It stutters: on/off/on/off/on/off. Probably an electrolytic, wouldn't you think? We'll come back on the air with the Ramsey FM35B which needs a little dusting off.

Saturday July 9, 2022 2:08 AM CDT -- Way to Go --
Guys Get One of These

Friday July 8, 2022 6:19 PM CDT -- Porky Catholic Bishops Decide What's Best for Womens' Health --
Know This

Friday July 8, 2022 3:26 PM CDT -- Noise Gate: A StereoTools Extra --
My estimate that AGC was set incorrectly in StereoTool was not the case (not to be confused with AOC). When I entered the controls a message informed me that the Noise Gate was removing too much, so I spent several minutes trying to locate the noise gate. Eventually I found it, but probably won't be able to do so again next time. I turned it off. Matter of fact one of the intimidating things about StereoTool is its burgeoning set of controls in which one can get lost.

Friday July 8, 2022 11:56 AM CDT --
I have trouble understanding some of what I've written as I read back over earlier posts.
That probably means that my writing ability exceeds my reading skills.
- Carl Blare, author "I'm Sure of That"

Friday July 8, 2022 11:16 AM CDT -- Artificial Thought --
A lot of what passes for food these days is literally artificial, meaning it's not the real thing. It only looks like or tastes like actual food. So what, then, is artificial intelligence (known popularly as 'AI')? In a July 3rd essay on the Artisan Radio Blog the notion of 'artificial intelligence' is dealt with as the silly nonsense it adds up to. As broadcasters many of us use semi-intelligent software to automate our stations. It can read the clock, keep programming appointments (so to speak), and switch things on and off. But you can't take it to lunch or hold a conversation with it. It does what it's told to do but if we fell on the floor and needed medical attention the software would keep doing what it does and ignore our plight. Whatever 'intelligence' there is was built into it by a human code writer, and that's all it ever knows. It doesn't get smarter and take our jobs away (except when it replaces us unthinkingly). It all reminds me of the goofy thought of 'intelligent design', which is redundant. Design is a by-product of intelligence and to call it intelligent is just an echo. The underlying purpose of ascribing 'intelligent design' is meant smugly as evidence of a magician creator, which sets aside and ignores the equal possibility that there might be an infinite number of other reasons for what is taken as 'design'. Maybe ignorance is a way of being humble, arrogant though it is.

Friday July 6, 2022 9:33 AM CDT -- Radio Success Stories --
My name is Todd Fumbly and I have a radio success story. I was unemployed and couldn't find work as a substitute announcer, so I had some cards printed that said I was a 'Radio Consultant'. One day at a bar I met a station owner that was spending a whole day drinking beer because he said his station was on the verge of bankruptcy. I gave him one of my cards and told him I'd be glad to help if he wanted to give me a try. He called me the next day and said he was desperate and putting everything in my hands. He said, "Save my station. Please." So I went to work. I recommended replacing his old audio board with the new massive room-filling audio control desk shown in a catalog. The new console arrived, was installed, I collected my $10,000 fee, and got a phone call from the owner saying he was now in bankruptcy and the station was going on the auction block. I was a total success as a consultant and lived almost a whole year before I needed another job. I have no idea what happened to that other guy.

Friday July 8, 2022 9:01 AM CDT -- StereoTools AM Audio Processing No. 5 --
Another essential element of AM radio transmission is the bandwidth of the signal, of foremost concern to the FCC in its role of protecting licensed stations from interference not only from low power devices but also from each other. Hobby broadcasters are wise to be aware of the bandwidth performance of their transmission system and be very fastidious about monitoring their use of frequency space. "Bandwidth" is a large subject and applies not only to an audio process but also transmitter/antenna design. StereoTools is an audio processor, and that's the part of the subject being tackled in this Blare Blog mini series. More techy aspects can be submitted to part15.org where actual technicians sometimes respond. The audio part has to do with audio spectrum frequency response. AM radio channels each occupy 10 kHz of space on the dial, but given the positive and negative frequency swings above and below a center-point, the practical frequency response of a strictly maintained AM channel is 5 kHz. Stations that must protect other stations on adjacent channels are required to operate tightly within their 5 kHz band-space. When adjacent channels are less closely populated the FCC allows some leniency and sometimes its permissable to swing widely into adjoining space and increase transmitted bandwidth to 10 kHz, although diminishing returns are apt to be encountered owing to deficiencies of many radio sets. The point I'm getting to is that StereoTools includes settings for establishing audio bandwidth being fed to the transmitter. From that point forward it's up to the transmitter/antenna combination to be capable of delivering the widened bandwidth. Since the Schlockwood line of equipment came up, we mention that they produce a fine AM Modulation Monitor that would be a perfect companion piece along with everything else.

- To Be Continued -

Friday July 8, 2022 8:34 AM CDT -- Guns and Guns followed by Guns and More Guns --
Everywhere you tune or turn the subject is guns. Public radio, commercial radio, television channels, online media, it's guns. There's no Ukraine War, the abortion crisis can wait until some far off pregnancy test, inflation just means being short of change, and the people who died from COVID are forgotten. The thing now is guns and at any minute some creep might drive by and target practice on people cutting their grass. All the gun talk is aimed at some elusive solution, but in fact strongly promotes guns. The more it gets talked about the more guns there'll be.

The very twisted mutant arrested for the Chicago suburb mass killing is the very image of a shooter who jumped out of the screen of a sadistic computer murder game which is the subject everyone should be talking about. Real world mass shootings are obvious self-upgrading for those who have aced virtual killing games at the home joystick and want to expand onto real streets. When questioned about the Highland Park kid an uncle said he "spent time quietly in his room on the computer". Hello!

Friday July 8, 2022 8:02 AM CDT -- AM StereoTools Tutorial No. 4 --
What is special or different about audio processing for AM broadcast transmitters compared to other audio processing?

Actual FCC rules may contradict me and I may not be up to date, but in general it is possible to modulate some AM transmitters above 100% for a louder affect for listeners, especially in the outer reception fringes where more loudness makes the signal stand out and appear to be stronger than it would sound with lower modulation.

Not all AM transmitters are capable of the higher modulations, some do not even manage to do well at 100%, so using StereoTools on a technically inferior transmitter would not have the full result desired.

The NRSC Pre-Emphasis we referred to is an audio response curve boosting particular upper-mid-range frequencies to make the signal sound brighter than some other stations and compensate for the oft-encountered high frequency roll-off of many AM receivers. Some transmitters include NRSC Pre-Emphasis internally which can be invoked by a jumper switch, in which case StereoTool's NRSC feature would not be needed.

- To Be Continued -

Friday July 8, 2022 8:00 AM CDT --
The new national campfire - radio.
- Linda Ellerbee, journalist

Friday July 8, 2022 5:04 AM CDT -- StereoTutorial Tool No. 3 --
Points of Reference
It pays to know where to locate detailed facts about StereoTool.
The *NEW* StereoTool Website is not fully updated and in the Documentation there are broken links.
StereoTool New Website
The OLD StereoTool Website Documentation contains working links to that otherwise missing information.
StereoTool Old Website
In addition, for those with a functioning install of StereoTool, holding the pointer over a setting will bring up a text box with an explanation of what that setting does. This probably works in both the free demo version as well as the paid version.
The documentation is always lagging behind the most current version of StereoTool because Hans Van Zutphen is constantly issuing updates but the documentation doesn't get updated at the same time. As of this writing the most recent version is 9.91.
There are YouTube videos about StereoTool but we've not seen one expressly geared to AM radio processing.
At present The Blare Blog is exploring the AM Radio Transmitter Audio Processing features of StereoTool and we're just getting started.
One must know that rules and regulations for AM radio transmission vary in different regions and rules undergo changes, the StereoTool AM Transmitter adjustments should always be made with awareness of your region's rules.
We see here an opportunity to delegate some of our research and tutorial effort to fellow bloggers and forums.
For example, NRSC AM Preemphasis is one function provided within StereoTool, but we heard a rumor that recent changes by the FCC render previous NRSC rules void, and this matter could be taken up by any of our participating blogs and forums. This Blog has previously linked NRSC information, but not knowing whether it is still current we will leave it alone for now.
- To be continued -

Friday July 8, 2022 4:33 AM CDT -- Realness --
Much of what's to be found throughout the media and in life is 'real'. There's a conservative talk show in our area that declares itself to be 'real talk', we use audio from an excellent progressive internet enterprise called 'The Real News Network', perhaps the counterpart to artificial intelligence is 'real intelligence', religion is built upon artificial knowledge while science is constructed of real knowledge, and when we think we're in love we wonder if it's 'the real thing'. We continually get offers to purchase our 'real estate' and heads are full of unreal estate. I was once asked "are you for real?" What then is 'reality'?

Reality is the sum or aggregate of all that is real or existent within a system,
as opposed to that which is only imaginary.
The term is also used to refer to the ontological status of things,
indicating their existence.
In physical terms, reality is the totality of a system, known and unknown.

- Wikipedia

Yet certain philosophers would argue that what seems real is perhaps an illusion, and many of us are inclined to be unrealistic. This is where The Blare Blog can help. We are your online reality consultant. Your reality coach. When they ask you to prove that you are not a robot, be reminded that robots are a real thing and everybit as likely to recognize all the buses or sailboats in a group of pictures as any flesh and blood human. 

Thursday July 7, 2022 4:57 PM CDT -- This, That, and the Other Thing --
Thinking I could find a PSA about Pro-Choice I did a search and was sent throughout every inch of the universe but not one result on topic. So, I think the search tool is prejudiced and being manipulated by Republican Swastika Christians. But I did see a promo for a BBC Sounds podcast labeled as "hilarious" so I clicked but ended up on a mass podcast website with all sorts of anti-male bash festivals by misandristic women, pet worshiping topics by those unable to maintain human friendships, and endless chats by people who have nothing to say but like to talk. I never found the BBC Sounds show.

That's when a beleaguered Fedex deliverer came up the way with a heavy box and I was able to save him the climb to the top of the parade review stand (formerly the porch) where I'd stepped to decide whether the heat is serious enough to lock up and close down. I maneuvered the box inside where I'll be opening it and setting up our latest refurbished computer to take over for the previous one which broke down when we tried to convert it into a railroad simulation gaming machine. It had been showing symptoms of imminent failure since we obtained it a year ago.

Part of my mind was still sorting out thoughts about StereoTools, and I am reminded that one setting needs tweaking on our own system, that being the AGC (Automatic Gain Control). It seems that when audio levels on program material fall below a certain threshold they suddenly become abnormally quiet whereas the opposite should be happening; they should smoothly increase in volume. We've been around a circle before with this same problem and perhaps don't understand how to do it.

The temperature is 90o, right on the border of heat closure, so we could stay online or go off. We are unable to decide at this time.

Thursday July 7, 2022 2:19 PM CDT -- StereoTool Tutorial - Installment 2 --
AM Transmitter Processing Settings Documentation
Perhaps tomorrow I'll add my own explanations as we scroll through the AM Settings, understanding that I am not a qualified RF engineer and realize that my understanding is only partial. Only once did I try these settings on my SSTran AMT5000 and the results were spectacular, but as I explained earlier, the AM Settings are no good for feeding other types of transmitters (non-AM) nor for steaming encoders.

There is a bizarre misunderstanding still pushed at hobbycaster which claims that outboard AM processing cannot be done to an AMT3000 or AMT5000 unless the onboard audio chip is bypassed, but the actual fact is that the compressor on those transmitters simply needs to be set to OFF in which case the processed sound passes through without difficulty. These same remarks probably apply to all of the common part 15 AM transmitters. The 'Modulation' control on the transmitter is a limiter that should always be used to set the maximum modulation peak intended for that particular transmitter, and the 'gain' control should be increased only until the processed sound coming from Stereotool touches the peak setting of the modulation control, using a spectrum analyzer.

Thursday July 7, 2022 12:34 N CDT -- A StereoTool Tutorial Begins --
Rich Powers had a "By the way" idea:

You should present a simple step by step tutorial how to utilize Stereo Tool for use with an AM broadcast.

Well, not necessarily that you should, but it would be cool if you did!

That is something we can do! So let's get started, and we'll do this in a continuing series of blogs:

It is true that StereoTool has an entire section especially for processing the audio for an AM radio transmitter, and since that was the focus of Rich's request, we will write about that.

At the present time the Standalone Version of Stereotool can only run one instance on a single computer, and if you set it up for AM processing then the audio will not be right for an FM transmitter or streaming. That is why KDX uses a generalized setup, since we feed the same audio to an Icecast Streaming Server, a C.Crane FM1 Transmitter, and Procaster AM Transmitter, also to mention the STL (Studio-Transmitter Link) TP-Wireless Transmitter/Receiver that gets the program audio from the computer to the transmitters. The inventor, Hans Van Zutphen, has said that he may eventually offer a Standalone Version capable of running several instances on a single computer, otherwise, at the present time, a person could run two different StereoTool setups on two different computers, but that's more complicated than what we'll be talking about.
StereoTool New Website
- To Be Continued -

Thursday July 7, 2022 12:07 N CDT -- More Background on the 1938 News Clips --
Rich Powers adds details about the 1938 Articles:

Carl, concerning the two documents I sent  you, I failed to mention even from where they originated! And I also want to elaborate on what they reported....

One was from page 7 of the September 20, 1938 issue of: "Heinl Radio Business Letter, 2400 CALIFORNIA STREET WASHINGTON, D.C." which was a bi-weekly publication, (1926-1950) about FCC activity, manufacturers of radio equipment and the broadcast industry.
It's interesting that back then the first page always included a heading stating:
"C O N F I D E N T I A L — Not for Publication". Later they dropped the "confidential" claim. Anyway, what that article was reporting about was FCC Docket 5335, which was actually a transcription of an "lnformal Hearing Before the Chief Engineer In the Matter of Proposed Rules and Regulations Governing the Operation of Low Power Radio Frequency Devices" which took place September 19, 1938, I have come across reference of Docket 5335 numerous times,, but as of yet have not been able to get my hands on a copy of it... I really would like to read it, but it's seems so elusive! Docket 5335 is where it all began, but where is it?

Anyway, a lot of interesting history can be found in the old Heinl Radio Business Letters, including more Part 15 stuff. Very interesting to browse through the issues.

The other clipping originates from the October 1, 1938 issue of "Science News Letter". I found it interesting for two reasons; Evidently Phono-Oscillator record players were already being manufactured before part 15 was created even though they were clearly illegal in regard with the Communications Act of 1934. The same goes for the "Philco Mystery Control", which the article doesn't mention by name, but it was the remote control in question. Philco knew it wasn't actually legal when they put it on the market, so they attempted to dance around the legal issue as described on Philco's History website:
".....Philco initially called it “Mystery Control,” refusing even to admit in its dealer catalog that it was wireless remote control, instead calling it only “a mysterious force!” The same catalog falsely claimed that Mystery Control was “not a radio beam,” when in fact it was just that – a low-frequency, battery-operated transmitter with a dial very similar to a telephone dial, which sent pulsed signals to the radio receiver.... announced for the 1939 lineup.... Philco finally admitted to what its “Mystery Control” really was, by using a more correct term – wireless remote control...." https://philcoradio.com/library/index.php/philco-history/chapter-4-diversification-and-war/

The April 1942 QST magazine article (titled: The Field that Stays at Home) strongly suggested that the Philco Mystery Control was the major factor behind the creation of Part 15, but that really doesn't appear to have been the case, it played a part, but apparently only a small one.

For at least the last 5 or 6 years I've been digging up the history of Part 15 AM, decade by decade, from the 1930s onto the present date, and its a rich and fascinating history. I swear I'm going to write a book.

- Rich

Nice, Rich! If it weren't for those early beginnings we would be standing here without hobbies!
I have a suggestion for searching old government archives... you could contact a reference librarian at a public library which serves as a federal repository, there is normally at least one such library in every city and/or county. They might be able to locate the document you want. Also maybe a law library might have a suggestion. Does the FCC have a law library?

Thursday July 7, 2022 10:32 AM CDT -- What Else Can the NAB Do? --
By admissions made in their own filing the NAB describes the weakening place of licensed radio in the media marketplace, in effect confessing that the NAB has been and is unable to 'save' radio, so seeks to lessen the sting of particular fees and regulations required by the FCC, as if reducing the cost of operating stations declining in popularity will ultimately matter. What does it cost to belong to the NAB? There would be a place to cut costs. Maybe the NAB is no longer needed, but that goes beyond the matter of the moment:
NAB Seeks Further FCC Deregulation

Thursday July 7, 2022 9:36 AM CDT --
There were influences in my life that were more important than journalism, such as comic strips and radio.
- Guillermo Cabrera Infante, Cuban novelist

Thursday July 7, 2022 9:26 AM CDT -- Holy Heck !! --
Cassettes Making Comeback

Thursday July 7, 2022 6:53 AM CDT -- So Much to Say but Too Tired to Say It --
Incoming message from Richard Powers of End 80 Radio:

Been awhile Carl. Been browsing through several months of your blog, and kept wanting to comment on a whole slew of topics, but in the end I just sighed in silence. I did notice your little player widget is working for me now, for several weeks it just would flash something like "network error" in its status bar (whereas Artisans stream always seemed to work), but now when I hit the play icon on your player it comes in bold and clear. 
I recall you've always used Stereo Tool for your processing and your programming (live and mp3 downloads) has always has that bold quality sound. Stereo Tool always seemed so complicated to me, which is the primary reason I never set out to use it, but I want to simplify and get away from using a rack of processing gear before my transmitter. I have (and still am) considered replacing it all by purchasing the apparently highly rated  Schlockwood's compact all-in-one processor, but hesitate over the $440 price tag... Your broadcast sounds pretty darn good with StereoTool.. What should I do?
Well, in closing, attached are two documents from 1938.. the FCC (then) is getting ready to create something which will come to be known as Part 15...

Best to you, glad you're over your slump.

- Rich

Hey! Very good to hear from you, Rich, glad you are keeping things going there on Tybee Island, Georgia. Yea. The slump. Everything turned out alright, I was convinced to stay online and keep the radio project active even while poking around with railroad gaming as a new outlet. Along with it I found that some of our Muses Radio Player Widgets were not updated with the right IP address to connect to KDX, mostly because I often changed the audio format having tried MP3, AAC, OGG, and now OPUS.

StereoTool is a wonderful audio utility that absolutely turns a plain computer into a professional audio processor and yes it is loaded with baffling tweaks and adjustments that can cause your airplane to crash, but there are safe ways to use it. The choice starts with having the right variant. For a long time I used the DSP Plugin with Winamp, but once I tried Zara I was hooked on its great features and started using the StandAlone Stereotool which requires also using Virtual Audio Cables. Once the input and output connections are established the safest thing to do is use a PreSet, of which Hans Van Zutphen the inventor provides many built-ins; pick a PreSet pleasing to your ears and avoid tampering with all the fine-tuning controls. But at the same time I have no doubt that the Schlockwood Processor is an ideal bit of hardware. And now your links:
FCC Newsclip No. 1 from 1938
FCC Newsclip No. 2 from 1938

Carl Spots Something He'd Like to Comment About:  in FCC Newsclip No. 1 we note in the first paragraph that "Low frequency radio devices" are introduced for discussion, but in paragraph four the language uses "low power radio devices". The editor in us believes that "low power" was the concern and not "low frequency". 

Wednesday July 6, 2022 12:27 N CDT -- Sequel to 'Affects of Heat on Computers' --
Yesterday we have a link titled 'Affects of Heat on Computers' but Mark informed us the link was bad, and we lost track of the original link which we replaced with a related article. But just now I found the original and link it here:
Heat Affects and Computers

Wednesday July 6, 2022 11:50 AM CDT -- Updating of Electronic Education --
Mark responds to our question of TECSUN radio thermometer function:

The sensor in the radio is the same as it is in any digital thermometer. It is a sensor inside on the circuit board not on the outside and just holding it will cause a warmer than true reading as you are warming up the case. It has to be sitting in a place where it has time to acclimatize to the surroundings. The sensor is a special kind of mini resistor called a thermistor that is very sensitive to small changes in temperature.

When I went to the article on heat and computers I got an error.

- Mark

That's good to know, Mark. I've heard of thermistors, but it's been so long since I built circuits that I cannot remember what all the parts do. I recall that there's a type of resistor that changes value in response to light, but I can't remember what those are called. Unless maybe they're varistors.

Affects of Heating On Computers - Thank you for letting me know the link was not working. I have fixed it, but the article is different than the one I originally pointed to which I cannot seem to find again. I think I've found a better and even more informative article, so check it out. To save you from scrolling in search of that link here is a shortcut:
Computer Overheating

Wednesday July 6, 2022 11:38 AM CDT -- Free Orban Loudness Meter --
KDX has utilized the Free Orban Loudness Meter since earlier versions as a valuable tool in measuring modulation levels of our various transmitters. How we do this is beyond the scope of this blog but radio stations have the opportunity of devising their own methods.
Orban Free Loudness Meter Version 2.9.6

Wednesday July 5, 2022 6:05 AM CDT -- Vinyl Has Resurged Bigtime --
Safe to say that all of us radio people have a lasting love for vinyl recordings and will be heartened to learn how fully the medium is coming back into the mainstream. Turntables turn again!
This Story from WPLN Nashville
MIX SmartBrief

Tuesday July 5, 2022 12:52 N CDT -- The TECSUN PL-310 is a Thermometer --
Not only an LW/AM/FM/SW radio, the TECSUN-PL310 is also a clock and a thermometer. Ours says it's 81oF here at the workstation right now. But where is the sensor that detects the temperature? A close inspection of all external surfaces of the device shows no obvious element that might be sampling the surrounding air for heat content. How?

Tuesday July 5, 2022 12:41 N CDT -- 
Keeping Computers at Safe Operating Temperatures --
The Affects of Heat on Computers

Tuesday July 5, 2022 12:12 N CDT -- Mercury Rising --
Already 97o! Getting ready to close the store.

Tuesday July 5, 2022 11:38 AM CDT -- The C.Crane FM1 Transmitter --
The FM1 was replaced in the C.Crane catalog some time back with the better FM2 which remains available. We have previously posted about these devices, of which we have both. There is a "review" of FM1 at hobbycast which overlooks most of what's important about the transmitter, so read it only if you want to end up as uninformed as you were in the first place. This morning we discovered yet another bug, this one involving the volume control which is important because it sets the modulation level of both the left and right channels. It is very prone to intermittant drop-out of one channel, causing overall modulation to collapse to 50% until it pops back in, making listen levels rise and fall. I might not say this if it weren't so hot today, but a solution would be to rent a bulldozer and crush the transmitter. Now 95o.

Tuesday July 5, 2022 10:55 AM CDT -- Climbing Steadily --
Already up to 93oF as Thom Hartmann gets ready to open his first show of the week. We'll probably miss most of his program as we anticipate closing until early Wednesday to protect servers from over-heating.

Tuesday July 5, 2022 8:36 AM CDT -- Getting Warmed Up --
Temperature is up to 87o and climbing while we prepare for breakfast here in the midwaste. The Michael Moore program was not what we expected, but was very entertaining anyway... we presumed that Moore would be talking with 75-year old David Letterman, but that's not what happened. The show turned out to be a homage to Letterman starting from the early days when Letterman did a morning show on NBC which Moore followed raptly, recognizing Dave as the talented showman he is. We learned that when RCA/NBC was purchased by General Electric (GE) David made an unannounced on-air visit to the GE building to deliver a fruit basket to his new bosses but was denied entrance by the security staff who said the visit was 'unauthorized', an event that inspired Michael Moore to produce his movie "Roger and Me", an unscheduled attempt to find Roger Smith, the head of General Motors which had devastated Moore's hometown of Flint, Michigan by closing the auto plant. The success of the film led to numerous guest appearances by the filmmaker on Letterman's NBC & CBS shows.

As a broadcaster under FCC Part 15 I still have a daily habit of visiting the only three forums known to exist for this shrinkingly arcane activity. The original is part15.org where almost nothing happens anymore. Moderator Mark, who also posts here, would very much like to see his forum revive its activity, but weeks go by in dead stillness. The only regularly recurring event is the weekly posting of the Oompa Hour by Tim in Bovey, who happens to be the champion of part 15 broadcasters with his popular Procaster transmitter mounted atop his house providing Bovey, Minnesota, with popular music, while Tim hosts a daily morning show on the town's high-power AMer and provides engineering services to three licensed stations. That's not all. Tim also owns and manages 'the world's smallest record store' in a storefront location. Something Mark could try as time allows is re-post some of the great posts describing Tim's activities which hopefully remain in the archives. This might inspire others to offer their stories.

As a kind of pointless exercise I like to see what the hobbybroadcast website spends great effort concealing from public view by posting provocative remarks with dummy links that deny 'non-members' after providing a place where they can be denied. I usually fail to guess what's being kept from view but enjoy the gamesmanship.

Last and absolutely least is the stolen remnant of the old ALPB forum hi-jacked while its late Chairman Jim Henry lay dying in hospital taken-over by Trumpian Rammer Bob who still plays the game as mild-mannered Clark Kent while his sneaky behind-the back attacks happen beyond public view. Rammer feels that "ex-chair" stands as a current title of note so long as no one recalls that he expressed displeasure while actual chairman. Ongoing frauds can be entertaining along with roadside accidents.

Tuesday July 5, 2022 7:13 AM CDT -- Heat --
Parts of 7 Central States are under an excessive heat warning. The weather in Canada is expressed in Celsius but we don't have a conversion chart handy.

Tuesday July 5, 2021 5:37 AM CDT -- Hot Week Ahead --
Today may reach 101oF, and looking further on, tomorrow again 101o, Thursday 98o, Friday 94o, Saturday 87o, Sunday 88o and Monday 94o. During this period the chance of storms ranges between 20% and 50%. For KDX and the Website it means a lot of closing down as we duck and dodge hazardous conditions. Is weather so severe around the continent? We'll take a look.

Monday July 4, 2022 12:17 N CDT -- Anachronism All But Said --
Woody Allen, in his appearance on KDX, said that the world today is not the same as the film world in which he grew up. Now, at age 88, he's about to make his 50th movie but says streaming and COVID have put movie watching in the privacy of homes which is not the same as watching with a crowd of others in a movie theatre. The word 'anachronism' never came up, but it would have been appropriate.

Monday July 4, 2022 11:35 AM CDT -- Planning the Day --
We've been here doing things since 5:30 AM and have paused to look around and do any planning necessary as we enter the afternoon hours. As we'd promised, Alec Baldwin is talking to Woody Allen over KDX and will be followed by Michael Moore visiting with Dave Letterman. The temperature now is 90oFarenheit with a predicted high of 94o and a vivid pink heat advisory in place, which probably means that we'll close the website and radio stream, entering also a 20% possibility of storm activity. Later, as temperatures subside, we may log back on unless it's past our bedtime which will put our return early tomorrow. Thom Hartmann will be back having taken a four-day holiday. Refocussing on the present moment the Alec Baldwin-Woody Allen Zoom visit has dropped out for the 3rd time, their connection in New York is not doing well. Also, our TP-WiFi Audio STL system is stuttering as its pairing has become disrupted by a neighbor's 2.4 GHz phone call, so we'll abandon the fight earlier than expected and move Moore-Letterman to Tuesday morning. We'll be shutting down about 12:22 N CDT. We've been blown up like a firecracker.

Monday July 4, 2022 7:25 AM CDT -- Happily Shackled --
In his message on Saturday Mark said, "
As I told Artisan the one good thing about computers and what you can do with them is how we can do our part 15 broadcasting that wouldn't be possible back in my "era".

Absolutely! "The one good thing," as Mark said. That leaves open the other side of computers, 'the bad things', of which there are more than one. But first the good side, being their use as a central control for easily running a virtually professional radio station without a warehouse full of specialized broadcast equipment. That is the thing we anachronists have in common, we each operate radio stations generated from personal computers.

In my "era", when I first broadcast using a "toy" transmitter, a Knight Kit, a Wollensak Tape Recorder served as the 'automation system' when I wasn't sitting at the microphone spinning records. It wasn't until the 1980s that I started experimenting with computer control using a Commodore 64 that was able to start tape machines based on an internal clock and local area radio stations were installing large automation mechanisms that shuffled tape cartridges containing pre-recorded commercials, announcements, and music. TV stations were beginning to use computer-based systems that controlled film projectors, videotape players, cameras and microphones, all of it headed toward the replacement of human talent and technicians.

Today almost everyone finds the internet as necessary as food and housing thus shackling us to the web of computers mostly with our acceptance because of the pleasures and entertainments it affords. We are voluntarily under 'house arrest' because the whole apparatus is used to inspect, investigate and surveil what we think and do. We wear an ankle-bracelet on our head.
As computers become proficient at what we once did, they are replacing us and eventually our participation will be no longer necessary but we can still be converted into pet food for the Trumps in high tower complexes who own seats on interlocking directorates, assuming they have pets. It's not a sane or rational plan, but you've met Trump and should know that he's not as bright as he says he is. And at this point he's only serving as a stereotype, as by this time tomorrow he'll be too old and the Jarad's and Trump Juniors will be taking over. As you should have noticed they're even dumber than daddy.

That brings us to climate change, the grand intervener.

Sunday July 3, 2022 5:04 PM CDT -- Here's a Movie for Y'all --
1480 Radio Pirates

Sunday July 3, 2022 11:09 AM CDT -- Defining Woman --
During the Senate's qualification hearing for Supreme Court candidate Ketanji Brown Jackson the question was asked, "What is a woman?" It was asked by Republican Marsha Blackburn and was answered: "I am not a biologist", a scientifically proper side-stepping of what some call an unanswerable question. However Carl Blare was there when language was invented and recalls that the word "woman" was founded on the simple realization that a woman is "a man with a womb", given that all humans are members of the species "man". They dropped the b.

Saturday July 2, 2022 4 PM CDT -- Not Living in This Time --
A message from Mark, moderator from part15.org:

I saw what Artisan wrote and I replied to him.
One's life is lived through many different "times" Usually your "time" or era is when you were 8-10 years old to 20 or 25 years old. That's what shapes how you think, your music, etc.....you can tell by the music one listens to when they were a teenager to early twenties.
I hate this time (that we have now)! The insanity of it all. What people listen to and call music, the mad obsession with phones, the fact that many would like to listen to my station but don't have an AM radio? What? A radio used to be a staple in every home and is easy enough to get. Romance and innocence are gone, more and more wild space gives way to development, things like car jackings/thefts, home invasions, crimes that never existed before, I can go on and on.
But as I told Artisan the one good thing about computers and what you can do with them is how we can do our part 15 broadcasting that wouldn't be possible back in my "era". How would we do this in the 50s 60s or 70s? Were there transmitters that were more than toys? How could we have the playlists and programing ability like we do now? But if I was back then I wouldn't care as I would have good old AM radio with dramas and rock and roll and the hit parade stations. Wouldn't need to do this.
I can never change to get with this time. I will NEVER get a smartphone. Why? Just because I should be modern and do what everyone else does? I live in my own little world, I can't change with the times.  I have to see the other world when I have to go out for groceries or something. Ignore it all.
Everyone has their time when it was "better". Mine is not the here and now.

- Mark

It seems the three of us are on the same page living life as anachronisms, but I would give us one more credit that hasn't been mentioned: life has made us philosophers because we have thought about the world and drawn our own conclusions about it.

Saturday July 2, 2022 12:26 N CDT -- Emphasizing a Shun --
The next time you send out invitations to a gathering of friends, instead of shunning the less welcome by leaving them off the guest list, send them a Non-Invitation:
You are expressly NOT INVITED to our upcoming pool party.
You would do well by making other plans for July 4th,
Because you will be escorted off the property should you arrive.

Saturday July 2, 2022 11:14 AM CDT -- Guest Commentary --
From time to time I like to invite my personal barber to appear on The Blog with his guest commentaries.
It gives me great pleasure to introduce Buster Boatrocker!

They have gone and done it. They have grabbed women by the pussy.
This is Buster Boatrocker.

Buster Boatrocker is a barber in South St. Louis Missouri and contributor to The Blare Blog.

Saturday July 2, 2022 10:29 AM CDT -- Back Talk --
Movie producer Michael Moore is in full disapproval mode over the harm being foisted upon women by this Supreme Court and did two of his most recent podcasts in criticism, both of which are coming up in minutes on KDX Worldround Radio.

At this exact moment the skies are darkened over the campus of Home School College and the AM radio dial is bursting with static discharges from an approaching storm, our AM transmitter is already turned off and the ground radials disconnected for safety, while we consider turning off the website until an all clear is reached.

Again Monday Michael Moore will appear on KDX with a May 1st visit from David Letterman, followed by an already well publicized Alec Baldwin interview of filmmaker Woody Allen. These programs fill the time reserved for the Thom Hartmann Program, off for the holiday.

Saturday July 2, 2022 9:44 AM CDT -- Faith in Football --

Not Drunk
This man is not drunk, but is saying a prayer while held up by a football and the Supreme Court.

We can celebrate independence from Great Britain on July 4th, but not from religion.

Friday July 1, 2022 6:45 PM CDT -- Anachronisms Among Us --
On June 20th Artisan Radio raised the question of whether he is an anachronism, a person living outside of his own time. I would like you to visit his website now, read the essay, and return here for my thoughts.
Artisan Radio Blog

Perhaps more people today than at any time in human history are living anachronisms because we have lived through and adapted to more sea changes than anyone in earlier times. What sets us apart from more recent generations is our having been here when the most important human invention of all time was introduced as radio with everything that followed being elaborate embellishments on a theme. Knowing radio at its roots gives us a seniority over internet babies who missed out on the days of invention when it all started. So, yes, to Artisan's concluding question: both are true... anachronisms though we may be, enlightenment comes because of it and it is not so easy to pass the combination over to uncomprehending youth. But, why should that be our job? We need to back this up a little... I seem to have brought a question into it that wasn't part of the original conversation. Except... isn't the difference between us and the newer set the exact thing that determines the anachronistic status? Yea.

Friday July 1, 2022 2 PM CDT -- Quelling Communication Frequency by Frequency --
In many large urban areas the FM band is 'sewn up' with licensed glut sparing no room for alternative messages that might mean something. But the AM radio band is thinning out as listeners escape the overgrown static from electronic noise too plentiful for the FCC to fuss over. But while crackly light bulbs and fizzing DSL go ignored, small radiation stations are aggressively disallowed on open, non-interferring channels, because information conveyed by words is closely restricted and belongs exclusively to money pockets operating out of big buildings. The paranoid state doesn't need proof of actual tabooed content, and paves over anyone lurking on the edges of the dialscape, as a wholesale slaughter not of extant ideas but of the slightest possibility there should be a stray idea.

Friday July 1, 2022 1:52 PM CDT -- Grown Ups in Witches Costumes Steal More Candy --
With no embarrassment over the hubris of being 'Supreme', a Halloween Court put Net Neutrality further out of reach.
A Potion of Poison Words

Friday July 1, 2022 12:25 N CDT -- Julian Assange Appeals --
Julian Assange Appeals Extradition to U.S.

Side comments by C. Blare: Earlier this morning I was about to link a Boing-Boing reference to this news event, but upon reading the story description by their writer I was put off by the extremely biased and seemingly untrue bashing of the journalist Assange, a tone not at all characteristic of that website. It even seemed to me their reporter might have been drunk. Searching elsewhere I was at first unable to find any report of this important story, typical of U.S. mainstream media which only delivers approved propaganda, as my own informed bias would have it. Than finally I found the above linked Reuters account which is put forth in a professional manner. It was, of course, Reuters journalists who were executed sports-style by U.S. soldiers videotaped in a helicopter (Collateral Murder Video), the exposure of which war crime is one of the acts of reporting for which the U.S. pursues vengeance against Assange.
Documentation of the Assange Story

Friday July 1, 2022 8:20 PM CDT --
Not everybody believes in your Sky Daddy.
- Pro-Choice Demonstrator message to the Supreme Court

Friday July 1, 2022 7:28 AM CDT
-- Today is Canada Day  --
Canada is a country in North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering over 9.98 million square kilometres (3.85 million square miles), making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Its southern and western border with the United States, stretching 8,891 kilometres (5,525 mi), is the world's longest bi-national land border. Canada's capital is Ottawa, and its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver.

Media of Canada
Canada's media is highly autonomous, uncensored, diverse and very regionalized. The Broadcasting Act declares "the system should serve to safeguard, enrich and strengthen the cultural, political, social and economic fabric of Canada". Canada has a well-developed media sector, but its cultural output—particularly in English films, television shows, and magazines—is often overshadowed by imports from the United States. As a result, the preservation of a distinctly Canadian culture is supported by federal government programs, laws, and institutions such as the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), the National Film Board of Canada (NFB), and the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC).

Canadian mass media, both print and digital and in both official languages, is largely dominated by a "handful of major media corporations". The largest of these corporations is the country's national public broadcaster, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, which also plays a significant role in producing domestic cultural content, operating its own radio and TV networks in both English and French. In addition to the CBC, some provincial governments offer their own public educational TV broadcast services as well, such as TVOntario and Télé-Québec.

Non-news media content in Canada, including film and television, is influenced both by local creators as well as by imports from the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, and France. In an effort to reduce the amount of foreign-made media, government interventions in television broadcasting can include both regulation of content and public financing. Canadian tax laws limit foreign competition in magazine advertising.

Low Power Radio Devices in Canada
FM devices may not exceed a field strength of 100 microvolts at 30 meters. AM devices are limited to 250 microvolts at 30 meters. All devices in Canada must have an antenna permanently attached to the transmitter. See Industry Canada BETS-1.
 REC Networks

June 2022 August 2022 Exit to Entrance