Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 91.djvu/463

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Wireless Work in Wartime. — IL

Learning the operating thoroughly and setting up a buzzer telegraph line

By John L. Hogan, Jr.


���IN the increased demand for wireless operators which has been created by the conditions arising from the declaration of war, the idea seems to prevail that a competent and useful telegrapher can be trained in a course extending over a few weeks of time. Nothing can be further from the truth. The beginners, who are now taking up radio telegraphy for the first time, will have many months of study to carry through before they will be really competent. Until they have become thoroughly familiar with the code and the basic principles of radio telegraphy they will not be de- pendable; without dependability the radio operator is not only valueless but dangerous. It cannot be too strongly urged that the training of a radio telegraph must be complete and thorough and that it is utter folly to attempt to cover so exten- sive a subject so rapidly as to make its complete absorption an impossibility.

The Study of Radio Operating

Although the several branches of radio telegraphy involve a good deal of study, the work of learning it is probably one of the most interesting occupations that a person of scientific inclinations can find. There is a good future for well trained radio operators, both in wartime and in the days of peace. The number needed because. of the present crisis is larger than normal, and more will be required from month to month. The trained operators who are now available will take care of the immediate needs, and those who are at present studying in the various telegraph and radio schools through- out the country will be utilized in the near future. The newest students will have their opportunities as soon as they secure their training, but until they are thoroughly

��A buzzer-set with its connections for sending messages from one room or place to another in learning to operate a key in wireless telegraphy

��prepared it is unwise to place them in responsible positions. It is also unwise for the students to attempt to speed up their courses of training by extreme abridgment, in an attempt to learn "only the funda- mentals." Thoroughness should be the watchword of every beginner; a little time spent in study of the important details will be more than repaid by the greater progress which will result as soon as the practical work is begun.

This series of articles, which was begun in the August issue /~\ of the Popular

O O — \ Science Monthly, t is designed to point out methods of study of radio- telegraphy which will result in thor- ough training in the shortest desir- able time. Only the most elemen- tary knowledge of electricity has been assumed, but even

���the skilled radio experimenter is likely to find some points discussed which are unfamiliar to him. The first article took up the commencement of the study of the Morse code, as a preliminary to telegraphy itself. The simplest subdivi- sions of the Morse alphabet, for aiding in memorizing the dot-and-dash symbols, were explained, and a description of key and buzzer practice was given. As soon as the student has learned to form the first three groups of letters correctly, as set forth last month, he should commence signaling practice with a companion who has progressed to about the same point in the study of telegraphy.

Setting Up a Buzzer Telegraph Line

The first step in communication is to set up a buzzer telegraph line between two points which are so far apart that the telegraph itself is the only means of com- munication. If you put one end of the line in one room, and the other close by in


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