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                      THE CGC COMMUNICATOR
                            CGC #540
                   Tuesday, September 24, 2002
                 Robert F. Gonsett, W6VR, Editor
     Copyright 2002, Communications General Corporation (CGC)
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  FCC WEBSITE RANKED FIRST IN FEDERAL GOVERNMENT*
  In the third annual study of state and federal government
websites, researchers at Brown University have given top federal
honors to the FCC's website <http://www.fcc.gov/>.  The FCC's
website received 92 out of a possible 100 points.
http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-226349A1.doc
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  IBOC/IBAC ORDER LIKELY OUT THIS FALL
  FCC Commissioner Kathleen Abernathy told attendees at the
NAB Radio Show that a Report and Order is likely to come out on
terrestrial digital radio this fall.  A mechanism for allowing
early adopters to go on the air may be approved in October or
November, with final rules to come in early 2003.
  http://www.rwonline.com/dailynews/one.php?id=2000
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  FORFEITURE WATCH - SELECTED ITEM
  Some consumers, intending to call 1-800-COLLECT, mistakenly
called 1-800-COOLECT instead.  The firm they reached, Opticom,
reportedly did not identify itself as required by the rules, and
the affected consumers received very high bills.
  Now, the FCC has issued two Notices of Apparent Liability
proposing a total of $6,560,000 in fines against two operator
service providers (OSPs) for taking advantage of consumers.
The fines are based on Opticom's 64 apparent violations, and
another 18 apparent violations from a firm called ASC.  The FCC
calculated the proposed forfeitures by using the $80,000/violation
amount previously used in cases involving egregious slamming.
http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DOC-226534A1.doc
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  EAS FOOTNOTES
  Low Power FM Stations must install certified EAS Decoders
within one year of publication of the underlying Public Notice
in the Federal Register.  There is also a rule change involving
EAS at cable systems serving fewer than 5,000 subscribers.
http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-02-2312A1.doc
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  * MORE ON THE FCC'S AWARD WINNING WEBSITE
  Following are some of the people at the Commission who have
worked diligently to make the FCC's website the top award winner:
  Dave Kitzmiller & Charles Harrington are the Webmasters,
coordinating the home page and making sure the "look & feel"
remain coherent; Dann Oliver, Jeff Riordan and Steve Balderson
work with Dave & Charles to produce the live audio/video events;
Sheryl Segal, Angela Robinson & Tracy Epps are responsible for
all of the documents - a gigantic task.
  There are many, many other contributors including a large
number of staff across all bureaus & offices working individually
and cooperatively - and there are many of you, our readers, who
have taken the time to send your thoughts and suggestions to the
Commission.
  If you would like to congratulate Commission staff on a job
well done, drop a note to Sheryl Segal (who was the Commission's
first Webmaster, by the way), and she will circulate your kudos
to the staff.  Her e-mail address is: <ssegal@fcc.gov>.
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                      LOCAL & REGIONAL NEWS
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  KVCR-TV SENDS ITS APPRECIATION
  KVCR-TV returned to the air on Wednesday, September 18, at
2 PM, ending an outage which spanned more than two weeks.
According to their CE, Tom Guptill, the station suffered from a
domino effect of problems:  A failed microwave feed and loss of
sync led to the demise of their klystron tube, and their spare
klystron shorted upon installation and damaged their high voltage
rectifier stack.  Only after the new rush-order klystron was
installed, was the power supply problem found.  KUSI-TV, San
Diego, got the gold star for having (and donating) the right
spare parts - now obsolete - from a RCA TTU-55 transmitter they
had decommissioned years ago.
  Tom plans to thank the broadcast engineering community
after he clears his desk of papers.  Meanwhile, he sends a big
Thank You to the many engineers who helped during the outage.
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                          MISCELLANEOUS
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  24 GHZ HAM RECORD BROKEN
  The ham radio distance record for a contact at 24 GHz has
been broken again.  On September 7, 2002, WW2R/5 and W5LUA made
a 337.3 mile contact with each other using terminal points
near Natchez, Mississippi and at Allen, Texas.
  The sked was set up earlier in the week via e-mail with no
liaison on any band, including cellular.  Attempts to repeat the
contact over the same path 12 hours after the initial QSO
resulted in no signals being identifiable either way on 10 GHz
(sic), suggesting the morning QSO was under enhanced tropo
conditions.
  Amateur Radio Newsline #1310
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  THE CANALS OF VENUS DEBUNKED
  Turn of the century astronomer Percival Lowell is well known
for promoting the (incorrect) notion that water canals had been
built on the surface of Mars.  He also drew a map of the "canals"
on Venus; the only problem was that no one else could see
anything resembling canals because Venus is always shrouded in
clouds.
  Turns out that Lowell had narrowed the aperture of his 24"
telescope down to about 3" to attenuate the bright light from
Venus.  That little known fact - recently publicized - caught the
attention of optical experts who realized that Lowell had
unwittingly turned his telescope into a reverse ophthalmoscope,
an instrument used to examine the interior of the eye.  Instead
of mapping the surface of Venus, Lowell was apparently mapping the
shadows of blood vessels and other structures on his own retina!
  Sky & Telescope magazine explains the situation in detail,
presents Lowell's sketch of the Venusian "canals," and a
photograph of retinal blood vessels.  The two patterns are
strikingly alike.  For more info (without the retinal photo),
see:
  http://skyandtelescope.com/news/current/article_648_1.asp
  (Scroll down for the story)
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           LOCAL ITEMS FROM THE FCC    (FCC TYPOS TOO)
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  FM STATION APPLICATION FOR MODIFICATION OF LICENSE GRANTED
  BMLED-20020719AAH   KPFK  51252     PACIFICA FOUNDATION, INC
                E   90.7 MHZ               LOS ANGELES, CA
  Lic. to modify
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  LOW POWER FM APPLICATION FOR ORIGINAL CONSTRUCTION PERMIT
  INFORMAL OBJECTION
  BNPL-20000605ALK    NEW   124583   CENTRO CRISTIANO DE FE, INC,
               P   101.5 MHZ                 HESPERA, CA
  Low Power FM CP New Stn.
  INFORMAL OBJECTION FILED 9/9/02 BY REC NETWORKS
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  FM STATION APPLICATION FOR LICENSE TO COVER GRANTED
  BLED-20020905AAM   KCSN   62949   CALIFORNIA STATE U./NORTHRIDGE
               E   88.5 MHZ                 NORTHRIDGE, CA
  Lic. to cover
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  DTV CHANNEL 47 TENTATIVELY ASSIGNED TO KAZA-TV
  The FCC has allocated Channel 47 to KAZA-TV, Avalon, subject
  to Mexican approval.  The facility is to be built on Mt. Wilson.
  The permittee filed its DTV channel request pursuant to Section
  531 of the Public Health, Security, and Bioterrorism
  Preparedness and Response Act of 2002:
  http://www.fda.gov/oc/bioterrorism/PL107-188.html
  and do a "find" for the second mention of "SEC. 531" (without
  the quotes).
  http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-02-2231A1.doc
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  The CGC Communicator is published for broadcast professionals
  in so. California by Communications General Corporation (CGC),
  consulting radio engineers, Fallbrook, CA.  Short news items
  without attached files are always welcome from our readers;
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  rgonsett@ieee.org  or  telephone (760) 723-2700.
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  courtesy of Bext Corporation.
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