I'm introducing Best Of Ham Radio as a means of highlighting achievements within our community. My list is not comprehensive yet the list is a good beginning. One can anticipate another like this one when 2009 goes QRT.
Best of Ham Radio's Web | DXAnywhere | 73s
...is transforming our method of sharing information and creating friendships. If one is looking for renewed excitement in our hobby then 73s and DXAnywhere are stand out examples. Respectfully, both are built on the concepts of collaboration, creativity, and communication that is, input is welcomed then executed in a timely manner from a broad spectrum of ham radio operators. Each has a promising future while ham radio moves into the new year.
Transformed Ham Radio Technology Of 2008 | FlexRadio Systems' Flex-3000
...is our brave step into our software defined future. Reconfigurable radios using software instead of hardware is worth watching through this year. The Flex-3000 is high end affordable technology at $1499 and does not break one's budget. The barrier into software defined radio (SDR) has fallen significantly. New innovation and inspiration will certainly follow as mainstream ham radio takes another look at SDR.
Best Hope For Ham Radio's Future | FlexRadio System's Flex-1500
...entry level SDR is the gateway into ham radio. If any wireless radio on the market can reach Millennials this is the one. FlexRadio Systems' $499 price point is parental friendly and presents an opportunity at deploying SDR technology into our high schools, colleges, and universities. Furthermore, low power operating is on the uptick and a 1-watt power amplifier (PA) is ideally suited for any purpose in ham radio. A 5-watt option is under consideration as well. Included is an intermediate frequency (IF) deck for VHF-microwave transverter operation. The Flex-1500 may pump up the volume on underutilized spectrum as well.
Blogger of the Year | Jeff Davis, KE9V
...one of the greatest pleasures of ham radio is meeting others who set the standard. I remember first launching my blog into ham radio's blogosphere nearly two years ago. And KE9V was one of my first reads. He inspired me to push my writing. Jeff guided me along and offered helpful suggestions as well. For me, KE9V is ham radio's anchor blog, one that illuminates topics with his succinct writing from the heart.
Mode Of The Year | Manned Experimental Propagation Reporter (MEPT-JT)
Most Controversial Of the Year | CW Skimmer
...challenged ham radio's status quo pitting human skill against software. And the debate rose like a storm shedding its controversial energy across the blogosphere and reflectors. Early adoption perhaps is still underway? Consequently, CW Skimmer's utility in RadioSport is yet evidenced however sponsors are adapting rules to meet software demands. However the success of CW Skimmer as a popular tool on the ham radio operator's hard drive maybe a few years down the road.
Most Eagerly Anticipated Of The Year | Cycle 24
...operating the days of zero sunspot activity and cheer when a group finally traverses Helios. If operating fortunes rise and fall according to sunspot cycles then Helios needs to kick in the particles. I like others are dreaming of a day when high bands like 10, 12, 18, 15, or 20m propagate a continual supply of DX both short and long path.
73 from the shackadelic.