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Brief history of speed telegraphy

The first international High Speed Telegraphy competition was the HST European Championship held in Moscow, Russia in 1983. Two more HST European Championships were held; one in 1989 in Hannover, Germany, and another in 1991 in Neerpelt, Belgium. The first HST World Championship was held in Sifok, Hungary, in 1995, and a World Championship event has been held in every odd-numbered year since then. The vast majority of international, national, and local HST competitions are held in the countries of the former Eastern Bloc. Every World Championship to date has been held in Europe. While many competitors are licensed amateur radio operators, there is no requirement that competitors have a license, and many pursue the sport without one.

Competition events

The 2003 HST World Championships were hosted in Minsk, Belarus.

There are three main competitive events at HST meets. One standard event is the copying or sending of five-character groups of text. Two of the events are based on simulations of amateur radio activity and are referred to as the Radioamateur Practicing Tests (RPT). The RPT includes the copying of amateur radio call signs and a "pileup" competitions, where competitors must distinguish between call signs sent during several simultaneous transmissions. Not all competitors are required to enter every competition, and some competitors specialize in just one competitive event.

In the five character groups event, random letters and numbers are sent in Morse code, five characters at a time, at a high speed. Separate competitions are held for the reception of just the twenty-six letters of the Latin alphabet, just the ten Arabic numerals, or a mixed content of letters, numbers, and some punctuation symbols. Competitors may choose to record the text by hand on paper or by typing on a computer keyboard. The competition starts with one minute of transmission sent at an initial speed defined for the entry category (usually 50 letters per minute for juniors and 80 letters per minute for the other age categories.) After each test, the copy of the competitors is judged for errors. Subsequent tests are each conducted at an increased speed until no competitor remains who can copy the text without excessive error.

In addition to reception tests, some competitions feature transmission tests where competitors must try to send five character groups in Morse code as fast as possible. Competitors send a printed message of five character groups at a specific speed, which is judged for its accuracy by a panel of referees. During each subsequent test, a different text must be sent, and the speed at which it must be sent is increased by a fixed amount. Competitors continue until the number of errors in their sending exceeds a defined limit for each test. Like the receiving tests, there are separate competitions for sending five character groups of just the twenty-six letter of the Latin alphabet, just the ten Arabic numerals, or a mixed content of letters, numbers, and some punctuation symbols. Most transmission tests restrict the type of equipment that may be used to send the Morse code message.

The Amateur Radio Call Sign Receiving Test use a software program called RufzXP that generates a score for each competitor. Rufz is the abbreviation of the German word "Rufzeichen-Hren" which means "Listening of Call Signs". In the RufzXP program, competitors listen to an amateur radio call sign sent in Morse code and must enter that callsign with the computer keyboard. If the competitor types in the call sign correctly, their score improves and the speed at which the program sends subsequent call signs increases. If the competitor types in the call sign incorrectly, the score is penalized and the speed decreases. Only one call sign is sent at a time and the event continues for a fixed period of time. Competitors can choose the initial speed at which the program sends the Morse code, and the winner is the competitor with the highest generated score.

The Pileup Trainer Test simulates a "pileup" situation in on-air amateur radio operating where numerous stations are attempting to establish two-way contact with one particular station at the same time. This competition uses a software program called MorseRunner. In the MorseRunner software, more than one amateur radio call sign is sent at a time. Each call sign is sent in Morse code generated at different audio frequencies and speeds, timed to overlap each other. Competitors must record as many of the call signs as they can during a fixed period of time. They may choose to do this either by recording the call signs by hand on paper, or by typing them in with a computer keyboard. The winner is the competitor with the most correctly recorded call signs.

The rules of international and European championships are defined in the document IARU Region 1 Rules for High Speed Telegraphy Championships.

Entry categories

HST competitions generally separate the competitors into different categories based on age and gender. The following are the entry categories specified in the IARU rules used for European and World Championships:

  • Women aged 16 years and younger.
  • Women aged 17 to 20 years old.
  • Women aged 21 to 39 years old.
  • Women aged 40 years and older.
  • Men aged 16 years and younger.
  • Men aged 17 to 20 years old.
  • Men aged 21 to 44 years old.
  • Men aged 45 years and older.

Past World Championships

  • 2006 Primorsko, Bulgaria
  • 2005 Ohrid, Macedonia
  • 2003 Minsk, Belarus
  • 2001 Constana, Romania
  • 1999 Pordenone, Italy
  • 1997 Sofia, Bulgaria
  • 1995 Sifok, Hungary

See also

  • Friendship Radiosport Games

External links

  • RufzXP Software by DL4MM and IV3XYM
  • MorseRunner Software by VE3NEA
  • PED software by JE3MAS (PED was used in official competitions until 2005, now replaced by MorseRunner)
  • Just Learn Morse Code

Internet Marketing Medicine! - by Dr. Michel Fortin, Ph.D.

 

In today`s world, it is an understatement to say that we are constantly bombarded with information of nuclear proportions. The roles of both the consumer and the entrepreneur have become so immensely challenging that choosing a business to buy from - let alone being and remaining in business - has become a dizzying process. Therefore, how does one survive let alone thrive in today`s explosive hypercompetitive marketplace, especially on the Internet?

Unfortunately, many businesses are still marketing themselves with old-style, "knock-until-you-drop" institutional marketing approaches (the kind that says "I`m open for business" - the Web is certainly not immune to this practice). These methods no longer work, or at least not as effectively as they used to!

For instance, a portion of my clientele have Web sites that produce little or no traffic, while others successfully attract tremendous amounts of traffic but generate little business. Online or offline, the key is not to advertise that one is "in" business but that one is "the" business of choice. Where people used to ask "Why should I buy this product or service?" today, that question has changed to "Why should I buy this product or service FROM YOU?" Simply put, today`s consumer will choose one company over another because the perceived value in their choice is greater.

This is particularly important with the Internet. The Web is so full of "raw" data that people no longer have the time to sift through all the information that is thrown at them - let alone the time to shop around for the best product from the best company at the best price. They usually make a decision based on the kind of information that instantly communicates a specific benefit; one in which there is an implicit added value in making the purchase.

Getting traffic to one`s site is one thing, but getting that traffic to actually buy is another. So, how can a company communicate that it is "the" business of choice? How can it give the kind of information that will get people to buy what it has to offer and do so effortlessly, especially in a hypercompetitive world? The answer is through positioning.


TOP-OF-MIND AWARENESS

In today`s world of hypercompetition, top-of-mind awareness is the most effectively provocative form of marketing now available. The idea is to create, within the subconscious minds of prospects, a psychological "anchor" that causes people to choose, when a need presents itself, a company over another instantaneously. Ultimately, the goal is to market one`s business in specific ways so that the name, location (URL), product, or service stays at the top of their minds at all times. I call this Miracle-Making Marketing. In other words, since people no longer have the time to shop around, when they do have a certain need they will

go to (or search for) the company or site that happens to be at the top of their minds at that very moment.

Ries and Trout, authors of the bestsellers "Positioning" and "The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing," state what I believe to be the most powerful notion in the world of business, in that marketing is a battle of perceptions, not products. In fact, marketing is all about perception. You don`t need to be the best company offering the best product or service at the best price in order to be the best. As long as people perceive you to be the best, you have the upper hand.

However, here`s the caveat. People want the best and that has never changed. But if you outright state that you are you then place yourself in a very fragile position, for people will think that you`re either bluffing or exaggerating at best. As an old mentor of mine once said, "Implication is more powerful than specification." If your marketing implies that you are the best without utterly claiming it, people will then perceive you as being the best and you will thus gain a winning edge over your competition. In essence, top-of-mind awareness marketing is to win the battle for your clients` mind and not their money.

Now, there are many steps that one can follow in order to achieve top-of-mind awareness, but this deserves a book entirely on its own. So, let me share one of them with you, which is the first and most important step in Miracle-Making Marketing: PACKAGING


NAMES

Does the name of your business, Web site, product, or service intrinsically reflect the result or benefit of that which you provide? It should. I am astounded to see many businesses today that are still called by ordinary or blatantly unappealing names, such as with acronyms like "MGF Technologies, Inc." I agree that some businesses may have notable or even "catchy" names. But if they don`t create top-of-mind awareness, they won`t create more business.

Consider this example. Which investment company would come immediately to mind if you were in the market for one: "John Smith Investments" or "Wealth Wise, Inc."? What about "John Smith, Accountant" or "A Knack with Knumbers"? Would you choose "JSI Brokers" or "Money Mastery"? You see, your package is extremely important in order to position (or anchor) yourself in the minds of your prospects. If your name does not tell people who you are and what advantage people have in choosing you

(i.e., the added value you bring to the table), consider changing your name, especially to a brand name that reflects the benefits of choosing your firm.

The same goes for your Web site (domain) name. I`ve recently registered mine as "success-doctor.com," but for now it`s members.home.net/mfortin. Nevertheless, you should do the same for your own, but don`t stop there. Choose a name that communicates your unique competitive edge and does so effectively and efficiently. While your domain name may or may not be

the same as your business name, as long as it follows the above rule, you`re in the game.

Today, with the very limited time people have, many of them would love to skip the hassle and inconvenience of sifting through hundreds of search engine results in order to get to that one company that offers exactly what they want. If they`ve heard of your business and want to know more, many will attempt a to go directly to your site by typing in a URL simlar to your business name before trying a search engine. However, if they do have to resort to one, their search will be much more simplified if your name conveys a specific, unique, and direct benefit.


TAG-LINES

Another tip is to add tag-lines to your business, domain, and product/service names. A tag-line is a small sentence, preferably 5

words or less, that says all that you are in one single swoop. I`m sure you`ve heard of "The Midas Touch," "Kills Bugs Dead", "Quality is Job #1," or "You deserve a break today." These are tag-lines and more than likely you know from which company they derive. Tag-lines are extremely effective, particularly in casting an aura of superiority or exclusivity and doing so without stating it outright. They usually complement your business or domain name and help to anchor it in people`s minds more effectively.

Tag-lines are particularly beneficial when one is small, self-employed, running an home-based business, or limited in making claims due to the type of industry in which one operates. Through a brand name and especially a tag-line, one can create the perception of superiority and anchor him or herself quite effectively in the minds of prospective clients.

Here are some examples. Rather than saying "John Smith, Business Etiquette Consultant," say "John Smith, Where Protocol Meets Profits". Instead of saying "Jane Smith, Graphic Designer", say "Jane Smith, Great Graphics Guaranteed." Other than saying "John Doe, Fashion Consultant", say "John Doe, Flat-Out Fabulous Fashions". You get the picture. Additionally, tag-lines can usually be incorporated as meta-tags on your site or become part of the keyword library that is included in a search engine`s URL submission. Remember that the more top-of-mind awareness it creates, the more simple the search for your site becomes. In other words, think benefits.

For instance, if you were to put two products from two separate companies side by side, two products that are of the same kind, quality, and price, which one would you buy? Naturally, you would have a tendency to choose the one whose package is such that it makes the product appear as if there is more value added to the purchase.

This added value may be in the form of guarantees, lower prices, better quality, additional features, faster results, etc. Essentially, put a special name and possibly a tag-line on your product or service that communicates this added value. If your product seems ordinary or is similar to that of your competitor`s, make it extraordinary through its name. A typical or even nameless product or service may be easier to sell when face-to-face with a consumer. But in cyberspace, however, the lack of human interaction takes away the emotional element in the sale as well as the ability to overcome objections. Therefore, a name must communicate that emotion. By doing so, it positions the product or service in the prospect`s mind and empowers them to buy.

The object of packaging is not to claim superiority or to make one "look good" but to turn the assumed into the assured in the minds of people (i.e., to make their choice a simpler and more confident one). For instance, most mechanics or garages offer free estimates these days. Not only do people assume that most of them do, they also expect it. This seemingly ordinary service has become but an intellectual cliché. However, let`s say you`ve heard of a garage offering "Free Fee Finders" or "No Guesstimate Estimates", or one whose tag-line says "Where Estimates and Smiles are Free". Now, if you had to choose a mechanic and

do so in a hurry, and you specifically wanted one that offers free estimates, would you go to one you think that offers free estimates or to the one you know that does?


EVERYBODY CAN DO IT

This process is amazingly simple yet so remarkably effective. If people don`t have to assume that your company, Web site, product, or service offers a certain benefit, or in other words if you take the guess work out your prospects` mind, you instantly place yourself head above your competition. You might think this process is a little silly or even meaningless, but people have made fortunes by simply packaging ordinary companies or products - even those that are identical to that of their competition - a little differently. Remember the "pet rock"?

In my consulting practice, I hear this "silliness" objection time and time again and especially with doctors. But I say that the above techniques can be applied even in these situations. For instance, a dentist offers traditional general anesthesia and nitrous oxide (laughing gas) sedation in order to make the process of dental work a pleasant and more comfortable experience. Many if not all dentists in her area offer the very same thing. However, she markets it with two simple words: "Dream Dentistry". `Nuff said.

In essence, in today`s hypercompetitive and hyperinformed world, top-of-mind-awareness is probably the best marketing tool now available. Through packaging, an ordinary company, site, product, or service can become irresistibly compelling. This is what I call "Crazy Glue for the Mind." So, make the ordinary extraordinary. Make yourself outstanding by making yourself stand out!


Michel Fortin, Ph.D. is THE SUCCESS DOCTOR (tm), an award-winning sales professional and internationally-acclaimed marketeer specialized in business development consulting and training. He is the author of "Business Booster," "Power Positioning," "Success Seekers," and "Marketing Medicine." If you like the ideas expressed in this article, you may obtain a FREE copy of his complete report, "The 10 Commandments of Power Positioning: Magical Marketing Strategies for Creating Endless

Streams of New, Repeat, and Referral Business," at thesuccessdoctor@yahoo.com. You may visit his NEW web site site at

http://members.home.net/mfortin.


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