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Click here to read about RF CafeView the YouTube RF Cafe Intro VideoKirt Blattenberger

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"The only thing more dangerous than a hardware guy with a code patch is a programmer with a soldering iron." - Anon

Today in History

USAF '17 Budget: "We Simply Can’t Afford "What We Need

USAF '17 Budget: "We Simply Can't Afford What We Need" - RF Cafe"It's simple: the Air Force 'simply cannot afford' to buy what it needs to buy over the next decade. The emphasis is the Air Force's own, published on its budget website ahead of the official budget release. 'The Air Force is facing a modernization bow wave in critical nuclear and space programs over the next ten years that, under current funding levels, we simply cannot afford,' the statement says. The fiscal 2017 budget request 'restores some capacity in ..."

Windfreak Technologies Launches New Website with E-Commerce

Windfreak Technologies Launches New Website with E-commerce - RF CafeWindfreak Technologies announced today the launch of its new and much-anticipated ecommerce website at Now customers can place orders directly on the website for faster service. Windfreak is a leading provider of low cost, high-quality USB-based RF products. The site's simplified look, enhanced content, and mobile device optimization, allows consumers to better interact with Windfreak Technologies online. The new features include a more attractive design, easier navigation enhancement, faster purchase checkout procedures, and mobile-friendly capabilities ...

Tech News for February 10, 2016

BMW Owners Want Their AM Radio Back

Something New to Worry About: Connected Toy Security

Comcast Eyes Launching Own Mobile Network

Google Boss Becomes Highest-Paid in U.S. (seems awfully Capitalistic)

Hate Your Job But Can't Bring Yourself to Leave? You May Be Too 'Embedded'

New ARRL President Happy to be Part of "Exciting Times for Amateur Radio"

Please Welcome Isotec as an Advertiser on RF Cafe!

Isotec RF/Microwave Components - RF CafeSince 1996, Isotec has designed, developed and manufactured an extensive line of RF/Microwave connectors, components and filters for wireless service providers. Isotec's product line includes low PIM RF connectors and also low PIM RF components such as power dividers and directional couplers. Frequencies up to 40 GHz and our low PIM products can meet -160 dBc with 2 tones and 20 watt test. ISOTEC offers quick prototyping and, advanced in-house testing. Please visit Isotec today to learn how their products and services can be of use to you.

War Assets Administration Advertisement

War Assets Administration Advertisement, February 1947 Radio News - RF CafeUnlike today when resources of all types seem to be endlessly available, during World War II countries needed to collect and recycle much in the way of metal, rubber, cloth, and other basic materials for re-purposing into products used in fighting the enemy. Media coverage of bottle, metal, and tire drives showed children pulling Radio Flyer wagons loaded to overflowing with such items gathered from trash piles and soliciting neighborhood residents for anything that could be spared. Raw materials were not the only type of items needed, however. "Use it up, Wear it out, Make it do, or Do without" was the ...

Prolific Inventor Artur Fischer Dies at Age 96

Prolific Inventor Artur Fischer Dies at Age 96 - RF CafeFischer Innovative Solutions - RF CafeProlific inventor Artur Fischer, holder of over than 1,100 patents, died on January 27, 2016, at age 96 in his hometown of Waldachtal (Black Forest), Germany. According to his company - Fischer Innovative Solutions - website, Mr. Fischer's success began with the invention of the very familiar nylon screw anchor for inserting into drywall. Most RF Cafe visitors will also be familiar with his company's extensive FischerTechnik line of mechanical construction toy sets. RIP, Mr. Fischer.

China to Launch~40 Beidou Navigation Satellites in 5 Years

China to Launch~40 Beidou Navigation Satellites in 5 Years - RF Cafe"China plans to launch nearly 40 Beidou navigation satellites in the next five years to support its global navigation and positioning network, a spokesperson said Wednesday. By the end of 2018, another 18 satellites will be put into orbit for Beidou's navigation service, said Ran Chengqi, spokesperson of the Beidou Navigation Satellite System and also director of the China Satellite Navigation Office. Ran said the positioning accuracy of the Beidou Navigation ..."

The Etymology of 'Quintessential'

The Etymology of 'Quintessential' - RF Cafe'Quintessential' is one of those oft-used words of which probably most people do not know (or have forgotten) its etymology, sort of like the phrase 'third rail' when discussing taboo subjects and 'fifth column' when addressing subversives. A quintessential example of something is the ultimate. In his article titled "That's Astronomy, Too" (3/2016 Astronomy), Dr. Jeff Hester reminds readers that Aristotle expanded on the concept of four fundamental elements - earth, air, fire, and water - with a fifth (quint) necessary (essential) element that is incorruptible: ether, or the heavens. We call it astronomy. You're welcome.

Keysight Technologies Announces ADS 2016

Keysight Technologies Announces ADS 2016, Its Latest Advanced Design System Software Release - RF CafeKeysight Technologies today introduced the latest release of its powerful Advanced Design System (ADS) software, ADS 2016. The software improves design productivity and speeds circuit and electromagnetic simulation performance. ADS 2016 provides new RF printed circuit board, laminate, module, and silicon RFIC products, as well as technologies, capabilities and other enhancements. "ADS users represent some of the best and brightest engineers in the industry, with their ...

Cognitive Radio: Interoperability Through Waveform Reconfiguration

Cognitive Radio: Interoperability Through Waveform Reconfiguration - RF CafeCognitive Radio: Interoperability Through Waveform Reconfiguration, by Leszek Lechowicz and Mieczyslaw M. Kokar. In the span of a century, radio technology advanced from spark transmitters, through analog radios based on vacuum tubes to solid state radios to finally software defined radios where most of the transmit and receive functionalities are implemented as programs running on specialized microprocessors. In recent years, cognitive radio emerged, which combines a software-defined ...

Schematics and Parts Lists for Vintage Vacuum Tube Radio Models

Emerson Models 501, 502, 504 Schematic & Parts List, November 1947 Radio News - RF CafeThese are the schematics and parts list for vintage Emerson vacuum tube radio models 501, 502, and 504; Crosley model 56TD-W; and Arvin model 140P as they appeared in the November 1947 issue of Radio News magazine. I scan and post these for the benefit of hobbyists and historians seeking such information. As time goes by, there is less and less likelihood that records of these relics from yesteryear's archives will be made available. As with all historical information, it takes someone with a personal interest in preserving the memories in order to fulfill the mission ...

Injectable Radios to Broadcast from Inside the Body

Injectable Radios to Broadcast from Inside the Body - RF Cafe"Implantable medical devices usually have to trade smarts for size. Pacemakers and other active devices with processors on board are typically about a cubic centimeter in size, and must be implanted surgically. Smaller implantable electronics tend to be passive, lacking computing smarts and the ability to actively broadcast signals, says David Blaauw, a professor of electrical engineer and computer science at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor ..."

LinkedIn Plunges 43%, $11 Billion Wiped Out: Where Did the Money Go?

LinkedIn Plunges 43%, $11 Billion Wiped Out - RF Cafe"Earlier today, in a strange twist of fate I exchanged emails with Georgetown University professor Salil Mehta regarding Facebook. I replied to Mehta with a comment not regarding Facebook but rather regarding Linked-In: 'Pray tell, what the hell good is it for everyone in the world to link to everyone else in the world?' I had not yet seen the carnage in Linked-In. I looked just now thanks to an email from reader Tibor who writes 'I know it's not quite a FANG, but dang! A $50B company ..."

NI AWR Design Environment V12.02 Release Now Available to Download

NI AWR Design Environment V12.02 Release Now Available to Download - RF CafeNI AWR Design Environment™ V12.02, inclusive of Microwave Office, Visual System Simulator™ (VSS), Analog Office, AXIEM, and Analyst™, has been released and is now available to download. This new release builds upon the load-pull features introduced in V12 as well as offers dozens of improvements to Analyst 3D finite element method electromagnetic simulator and layout and to NI AWR Design Environment modeling, scripting and stability analysis ...

Notable Science Quote: Carl Sagan on Johannes Kepler

Notable Science Quote: Carl Sagan on Johannes Kepler - RF Cafe"When he found that his long cherished beliefs did not agree with the most precise observations, he accepted the uncomfortable facts, he preferred the hard truth to his dearest illusions. That is the heart of science." - Astronomer Carl Sagan referring to Johannes Kepler in the Cosmos series, The Harmony of the Worlds [Episode 3].

Tech Headlines for February 9, 2016

Qorvo's (RFMD) Quarterly Revenue Falls 12% after Demand Pause from Largest Customer

T-Mobile Wins OpenSignal Speed Tests

Consistency of Earth's Magnetic Field History Surprises Scientists

Cautious Expectations for Semi Amid Slow-Growth Global Economy

Glonass Navigation System Reinforced by Soyuz Launch

Chiral Magnetic Effect Generates Quantum Current

"Frequency" vs. "Amplitude" Modulation

"Frequency" vs. "Amplitude" Modulation, August 1935 Radio-Craft - RF CafeA momentous development that changed the field of radio communications warranted merely a half-page announcement in 1935 when frequency modulation inventor Edwin Armstrong had his article published in Radio-Craft magazine. Spread spectrum modulation / demodulation would be the next big advance. I cannot think of any fundamentally new communications technology since that time, other than maybe the still-in-the-laboratory method of quantum entanglement ('spooky action ...

Tower-Style ICs Could Boost Processor Performance 1,000x

Tower-Style ICs Could Boost Processor Performance 1,000x - RF Cafe"In the age of big data, cloud and the internet of things, our thirst for computing power has never been greater. Many of our readers will be familiar with Moore's law, the observation that predicts a doubling of computing capability every two years, as integrated circuits are packed ever denser with increasingly smaller transistors. This general rule of thumb has held firm over the past number of decades, but the pace of progress is now beginning to slow, with Intel's CEO noting ..."

Microwave Engineering Crossword Puzzle for February 7, 2016

Microwave Engineering Crossword Puzzle for February 7, 2016 - RF CafeFor the sake of avid cruciverbalists amongst us, each week I create a new crossword puzzle that has a theme related to RF, microwave, electrical and mechanical engineering, mathematics, chemistry, physics, astronomy, mathematics, and other technical words. You will never be asked the name of a movie star unless he/she was involved in a technical endeavor (e.g., Hedy Lamar). Enjoy!

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