Much like Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character in the movie ‘Twins’, the walkie-talkie can claim to have many fathers. However, one of the most prominent names in the debate (and maybe the one with the single strongest claim to having invented the walkie-talkie) is Canadian/American inventor Al Gross.

The son of Romanian immigrants, Al Gross was born in Toronto, Canada in 1918, but his parents moved to Cleveland, Ohio, USA when he was quite young. Whilst on a steamboat trip across Lake Erie, the 9-year-old Gross encountered radio technology for the first time and, in so doing, ignited a passion within him that would change the world.

How passionate was he? By age 12, Gross had turned his parents’ basement into a radio centre. The bright young man would visit junkyards and salvage any material he thought he could use. Four years later –aged 16- Gross was awarded an amateur radio license, which was still in effect at the time of his death in 2000.

At the age of 18, Gross enrolled in the Case School of Applied Sciences. At the time, radio frequencies above 100MHz were relatively unexplored territory. Gross wanted to see exactly what could be done with them. He wanted to create a mobile, lightweight, handheld transceiver, using those uncharted frequencies. In 1938, he did just that, patenting the two-way radio, or ‘walkie-talkie’. He was just 20 years old.

War arrived on American shores in 1941 with the attack on Pearl Harbour. America scrambled to mobilize its armed forces and take advantage of any/all new technology that could aid the struggle against the Axis powers. The US Office of Strategic Services (OSS) – a forerunner to the CIA – tapped Gross to create an air-to-ground communications’ system. The system Gross designed employed Hertzian radio waves and was almost impossible for the enemy to monitor, even when allied planes were in enemy airspace. Gross’ system proved incredibly successful (so much so, that it was not declassified until 1976).

After the war, the inventor turned entrepreneur and founded the Citizens Radio Corporation, which took advantage of the first frequencies designated for personal use. His company was the first to receive FCC approval for use with the new ‘citizens’ band’. He licensed radios to other companies and supplied units to the Coast Guard, amongst others.

Then, in 1949 came another amazing discovery. Gross invented and patented the telephone pager. He invented the system with doctors in mind, but the medical community was (amazingly) slow to respond to this new technology. Only New York’s Jewish Hospital saw the potential of the pager as a life-saving device, when they implemented it in 1950.

Throughout the 1950’s, Gross, ever the pioneer, fought hard to garner interest for his newest idea – a mobile telephone. It took him eight years to get mobile telephony, as a concept, off the ground. Talk about being ahead of the curve!

Unfortunately, many of Gross’ best ideas were so far ahead of said curve, that his patents ran out before he could garner the profit his genius deserved. Had he earned the money eventually generated by CB radio, pagers and cellular phones, he would have died an extremely rich man. However, it was not to be.

Gross invented a lot throughout the years, but nothing brought him the amount of money that he potentially could have made from his earlier inventions. However, Gross was able to make a comfortable living, spending the 1960’s working for large corporations as a specialist in communications systems. 

In the 1990’s, he was employed as a Senior Staff Engineer for Orbital Sciences Corporation in Arizona, where he worked on satellite communications, military equipment and aerospace technology.

As an older man, Gross got the most joy from visiting local schools and giving presentations. He took extra pleasure in inspiring the next generation of scientists, engineers and thinkers.

In April of the year 2000, Al Gross (who had garnered numerous awards throughout his career, far too many to write about here) was honoured to receive the Lemelson-MIT Lifetime Achievement Award. He passed away eight months later in December 2000.

Gross never actually retired and was still working at the age of 82, a restless paragon of forward thinking, innovation and tireless imagination.

SOURCE

http://web.mit.edu/invent/iow/gross.html

The truth is that shopping centres (or ‘malls’ if we’re being American about it), can seriously improve an area’s local economy. It is basic economics really, if the supply is less than the demand, then there is profit to be made. I expect a percentage, Deepak!

OK, I’ve thought a bit about this one and, I reckon your best bet would be an affordable, yet high performance unit like a Motorola DP3400 or similar. I suggested the DP3400 because it a) it won’t bankrupt the (hypothetical) project, b) it is very versatile and c) it is exceptionally easy to use (user training takes, on average, about 20 minutes).

A DP3400 offers use of 32 channels, functions as both analogue and digital and is available in UHF or VHF versions. In short, this radio is perfect for security, health and safety or even customer service.

I’ve recently found the ‘Case Studies’ sections on the Motorola website (you can probably tell by my other pieces this month), but the DP3400 has a case that’s exactly like yours. For what its worth, here’s what they said about it.

“Digital two-way radio was chosen to provide a secure, discreet communicationsystem with no risk of transmissions being compromised by eavesdroppers. The Centre’s local Motorola Authorised Dealer demonstrated how  MOTOTRBO digital radios could provide greater coverage and improved audio clarity than analogue and enable users to make both one-to-one and group calls. The increased battery power would extend battery life by up to 40%, enabling the radios to be used throughout the entire 11-hour trading day without recharging”.

That sounds pretty good to me. In any instance, you keep dreaming and don’t let anyone discourage you. Find out what it takes to be an…um, ‘shopping centre design person’ and just go for it! 

I do not know how you came here because you read it on social media, twitter, facebook, google +, stumble upon or anywhere else. thankyou for coming and I hope you enjoy reading this as much as I did.

All around us, the wireless world is going digital. But organizations have questions about this breakthrough technology. To provide them with answers, BearCom and Motorola Solutions teamed up to create our Analog-to-Digital Migration Guide: “Five Reasons to Migrate to Digital Two-Way Radios.”

“A ‘smart’ revolution is transforming two-way radios,” the guide begins. “Digital technology is opening the door to a host of useful web-based applications for two-way radios, even as it enhances capacity, coverage, audio quality, and battery life.”

Available as a free download from BearCom.com, the guide details how digital two-way radios offer additional functionality, greater efficiency, enhanced coverage, improved audio quality, and extended battery life compared to analog radios. It explores the capabilities and benefits of the latest radios, the differences between analog and digital technologies, and the process for making a smooth transition to digital.

“There are plenty of exciting new digital two-way radio products available,” reads the cover letter from BearCom President & CEO Jerry Denham. “This new Analog-to-Digital Migration Guide is the latest tool we’ve developed to assist organizations around the country as they harness the power of digital performance to improve their communications capabilities.”

The guide includes details on the MOTOTRBO line of digital two-way radios from Motorola Solutions and the new Motorola CP200d, which was made available through BearCom last summer. In developing the CP200d, Motorola Solutions was able to retain the simplicity and durability that have helped make the Motorola CP200 analog model popular across a wide range of industries.

The guide also answers frequently asked questions, such as:
Why should we go digital?
How are apps useful in two-way radios?
Will analog radios become extinct?
Are my analog two-way radio accessories compatible with digital models?
How can I get the best value when selecting digital two-way radios?

– See more at: http://blog.bearcom.com/2014/01/new-analog-to-digital-migration-guide-helps-users-take-advantage-of-the-latest-technologies/#sthash.hoMbIaZV.dpuf

My basic review of a new two way radio it starts up well, looks rather cool, is simple to run and very energy efficient, the two way radio is a top quality product. I’m happy I purchased it, read further below.

The construction industry is on a roll, according to experts who project construction starts will be up 9% this year, on top of last year’s 5% gain. The biggest increases in activity will be in single-family housing, commercial building, and multifamily housing. Getting all that construction work done as efficiently and safely as possible will take top-floor communications capabilities, and that’s where two-way radios come in.

Two-way radios have long been popular tools on construction sites, and it’s easy to see why. The one-to-many communications device makes it possible to alert entire groups of people to situations and facilitate their input on resolutions. Radio communications are immediate, which makes for quicker problem solving. Radios allow workers to be heard in noisy environments, and speaker-microphones keep their hands free for essential tasks.

Plenty of two-way radios are very easy to use—just push to talk and release to listen. Many are designed especially for construction’s harsh work environments and can last for years. Those that are submersible in water not only come through wet conditions, they can be cleaned with water, which extends their useful lives.
The bottom line? If construction workers aren’t walking back and forth across large job sites looking for answers, groups can be more efficient. More efficient groups often need less manpower. They can also use their improved communications capabilities to more swiftly identify and address safety concerns.

Which radios do construction organizations choose? That often depends on the size of the organization or the complexity of the project. Smaller, independent contractors are focused on coordinating their foremen, employees, and subcontractors. They are most likely to rely on simple but rugged talk-and-listen portable units, like the commercial-grade radios from Motorola Solutions.

One of the most popular commercial two-way radios ever released, the Motorola CP200 is lightweight, durable, and easy to use. It is now available in a digital version, the Motorola CP200d. The CP200d retains the radio’s simplicity and reliability, and the form factor is virtually the same. The new model is backward compatible, so it uses the same chargers, batteries, and speaker-microphones. It is also being made available in a digital-capable version that can be converted later from analog to digital operation.

Leaders of mid-size construction firms want to keep in touch with their construction crews even as they leave construction sites for supplies and move between sites. They also want to make sure crews can stay in contact with one another. Such firms tend to look for options that include the Motorola HT Series portable and CDM Series mobile two-way radios. These more sophisticated radios pave the way for trunking, which makes possible communications across a much wider area.

The largest construction organizations want to take voice communications to the next level and to integrate voice and data. Doing this requires digital technology and the industry-leading MOTOTRBO line from Motorola Solutions. Digital two-way radios have a host of advantages over analog models, including improved audio quality, enhanced clarity throughout the coverage range, greater efficiency, extended battery life, and applications that add functionality.

One popular MOTOTRBO model among construction firms is the Motorola XPR6350. It features one-touch calling, quick text messaging, and enhanced call management, making it ideal for professionals.

From enhancing productivity and minimizing delays to improving worker safety and reducing operating costs, two-way radios have earned a permanent place on many a tool belt. The available options and features have never been better, no matter where radios are being put to work.

See more at: http://blog.bearcom.com/2014/02/two-way-radios-play-a-role-as-construction-industry-builds-momentum/#sthash.lxDQx6CA.dpuf

What would you do if i stated I had found a Walkie talkie short article that is not only fascinating but informative as well? I knew you wouldn’t believe me, so here it is the informative, excellent and interesting editorial

Mobile push to talk pioneer Voxer has just released an update for Android that includes its brand new Easy Talk widget for Android users. The new widget allows you to quickly access your most important chats and listen to live and recorded voice messages. You can also send audio, texts or images right from the lock screen or home screen.

“Voxer’s goal is to facilitate instantaneous communication and make it easy for users to quickly contact each other, reducing the time it takes to send and receive messages,” the company said of the update in a press release. “This is especially important for businesses, where time saved on communication can lead to benefits like cost savings. The Easy Talk widget is designed to help users communicate faster, enabling them to send and receive messages without unlocking their Android device.”

“REPLACING TRADITIONAL TWO-WAY RADIOS AND OTHER COMMUNICATION DEVICES WITH VOXER”

Some features of the Easy Talk widget include:

  • Access from home or lock screen: Users have access to several Voxer features right from the widget, which includes listening and sending voice messages, texts and images.
  • Prioritize important chats: Users can select specific chats that are the most important to them, and add them to the widget. They can access these chats by tapping on the next and previous buttons within the widget.
  • Send and receive live audio: Voice messages can be streamed live for the chat that is visible on the widget, so the user can have constant access to voice messages, even when the Voxer app is not open on their device.
  • Headset integration: The widget streams live audio to headsets, so users can communicate via their headset for easy access.

“Our customers are replacing their traditional two-way radios and other communication devices with Voxer,” said Irv Remedios, head of product, Voxer. “With this widget, we can replicate the live characteristics of traditional PTT, in addition to other features that can help users communicate faster. Android users can organize their chats, providing easy access to the ones that are the most important. With Easy Talk, users can communicate faster than ever before.”

The Easy Talk widget is now available for Voxer Pro and Voxer Business customers with Android devices running 2.3.5 and above.

Read more at http://www.trutower.com/2014/04/23/voxer-push-to-talk-launches-easytalk-feature-android/#MAJCJ5urdE4lBJDi.99

The basis of the post is to make you consider what in life is significant and what does getting the new Radio really represent to us

The borough council approved the purchase of six radios to use with the recent emergency communications system updates to the police department at a cost of $27,000 at its Wednesday meeting.

Under new federal regulations, the county’s emergency management communications network must be converted to a narrowband frequency to make it more efficient. The county is in the process of complying with Federal Communications Commission-required upgrades to emergency communications.

The borough ordered six Motorola APX6000 radios from Green’s Communications, Pottsville, on Friday. Three radios will be placed in the cars and three are for officers to carry.

The radios could take four weeks to arrive, borough Manager Mike Lonergan said.

In other news, the council also voted to approve a proposal by the Exeter Ambulance Association, Berks County, for two Automated External Defibrillators.

The cost for the AEDs is $4,200. They will replace one for the police department that is at least 10 years old, Lonergan said.

Also at the meeting, Lonergan said he will apply for a $40,000 grant through the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources for new playground equipment at Community Memorial Hall, mulch and other park maintenance.

The playground equipment that is in good shape, such as the jungle gym, merry-go-round and seesaw, would not need to be replaced. However, the swing set is about 20 years old and could be removed or relocated to another park in the borough, Lonergan said.

The deadline to apply for the grant is Wednesday, and the borough could know by the fall if the grant is awarded. A $20,000 match by the borough would be required and would be paid through by funds designated for recreation use.

In other council action, approval was granted for Lonergan to prepare a final agreement between the borough and Schuylkill County Municipal Authority for the supplemental operation and maintenance services for the borough water and wastewater systems after review by the borough solicitor Frank Tamulonis and an engineer from SCMA.

The cost to the borough for the service is $1,850 per month and would likely start this month. The borough previously gave approval to execute a memorandum of understanding with the authority to provide the aforementioned support.

The council also authorized Tamulonis to advertise an ordinance for declarations of taking or using eminent domain to obtain easements for the safe routes to schools project if necessary. The project would involve curbs and sidewalks from downtown Market Street to Blue Mountain Elementary East along Red Dale Road for a total of about 1,200 feet, Lonergan said.

The borough was awarded a $303,000 grant in 2009 through the Safe Routes to Schools Program through the state Department of Transportation.

“We do not anticipate the ordinance being necessary,” Lonergan said. However, if it is, the borough would compensate property owners.

 

Ham radio (so called because its operators were originally derided as being ‘hammy’ in the 19th century, when the technology first emerged) is a term that applies to any form of amateur radio broadcasting.

 

There are designated radio frequency spectra available solely for public use. Uses range from recreation to communication and the non-commercial exchange of ideas. ‘Hams’ take advantage of these frequencies in order to transmit any number of things More »

Boots Enjoys Future Proofed Communications in a Single Handset at National Stores Service Centre in Nottingham

Boots the Chemist is the United Kingdom’s leading health and beauty retailer. The company supplies its 2,600 outlets in the UK and Ireland from an 800,000 sq ft Stores Service Centre (SSC) in Nottingham. The SSC stocks thousands of

product lines and is set to handle Boots’ entire range by 2009. It operates 16 hours a day, six days a week and services many stores on an almost daily basis. More »

The tourism industry is a big one, with various holiday seasons bringing in huge revenues around the world, year in, year out. In some cases, tourism profits are actually vital to the survival of small towns and resort areas, as well as major factors in the host country’s GDP.

Approximately 30 Million people visit the UK from all over the world each year (and we don’t even get nice weather!). Drawn to our many sites of cultural interest, even more of historical interest, or just a slice on English country life, these tourists are actually a considerable part of our economy. More »

28. March 2014 · Comments Off on Icom IC-7700 firmware update (Version 2.0), available now. · Categories: 2 way radio

Just added to the Icom website, a much needed firmware update for the IC-7700.

This is to inform you that Icom Inc. has published a firmware update for the IC-7700. The firmware update is free to download.

The new update follows a similar upgrade made to the IC-7800 last year and is aimed at providing sharpened performance and a greater user experience for operators.

New and improved features include:

1. Spectrum Waterfall Display: Review RF and AF characteristics on the IC-7700’s impressive 7-inch color LCD. Includes a wide screen setting.

2. PC Mouse Operation:Connect a mouse via USB to select operating frequency and control the spectrum scope.

3. Audio Scope Function: Review the FFT scope with waterfall and oscilloscope. In CW mode, observe mic compressor level and other attributes.

4. Digital Voice Recorder: Automatically capture incoming/outgoing calls onto an external memory card or flash drive.

5. Direct Remote Control Operation: Connect directly to an IP network using Icom’s optional RS-BA1 software and the IC-7700’s internal base station function. (A user operation PC is still required; a base station PC is not.)

Mini spectrum and audio scope screen from the upgraded Icom IC-7700

For more information, please refer to IC-7700 Information for Firmware version 2.00: http://www.icom.co.jp/world/support/download/manual/pdf/
IC-7700_FirmUpInfo_V200E_0.pdf 
.

The firmware can be downloaded from the following URL from the Icom Inc website: www.icom.co.jp/world/support/download/firm.

Ian Lockyer
Marketing Manager
Icom UK Ltd

Asked by Bradley from Surrey

 

The short answer to your question is ‘yes’. Quite an emphatic ‘yes’, in fact.

 

If you’re a bigger company, then it is likely that the service fees for cellular devices alone are costing you mucho dinero, to say nothing of the cost of the devices themselves.

  More »

(Asked by ‘Scottish’ Pete from Woolwich)

Hey Pete, how’s everything? Thanks for your question.

…And what a question it is. The modern two-way radio, which is a direct descendent of the WW2-era Walkie-talkie, first became recognizable in the years just before the outbreak of World War 2. Its origins are an interesting story in their own right (but I’ll condense it here).

Three names are usually mentioned with regards to the invention of the walkie-talkie… More »

(Asked by Rory from County Kildare, Ireland)

Before all you regular readers point out that Margot from Brighton asked me a very similar question last month, let me just say that I’m answering this one simply because of the way Rory chose to phrase his question.

In life, we are constantly bombarded by instructions, orders and indefinable ‘rules’ (some of which are written down and legally enforced, while others still are unwritten and socially enforced). I’m sure I’m not the only one who, like Rory from Kildare, wonders what would happen if some of those rules were to be broken. More »

(Asked by Paul from Dublin, Ireland)

Y’know, I visited your fine city of Dublin many years ago and had a wonderful time. It is a truly magical place.

Anyway, on to your question….

NASCAR drivers use a unique radio system that is built in to their crash helmets. These are occasionally customized to suit the individual wearer. In addition to this, there is a push-to-talk button (exactly like the one found on a walkie-talkie), which is situated in the steering wheel. A wiring harness connects the various components together and a separate battery operates the whole thing. The signal is broadcast via a whip antenna that is attached to the roof of the car. In this fashion, NASCAR drivers are able to communicate with pit crews. More »

The real reason is that the signals generated by your radio receiver (yes, it generates signals as well as receives them) can interfere with the aeroplane’s navigation equipment.

 

In an article for ‘The Straight Dope’, published in 1987, Cecil Adams (who ran a similar, but far superior, column to this one) explained it far better than I could. He said,

 

“Most modern receivers use something called a “local oscillator,” which is sort of an internal transmitter. The oscillator generates signal A, which is mixed with the somewhat raw incoming signal B to produce nice, easy-to-work-with signal C. There’s usually some sort of shielding around the oscillator, but it’s not always effective and sometimes errant signals leak out to make life difficult for other radio equipment nearby. If the other equipment happens to be an aircraft navigation device, somebody could wind up digging furrows with a $25 million plow. So do your bit for air safety and bring a tape player instead.” More »