QSLing Policy

Whoever said that from the IARU should be FIRED! I like my paper QSL cards in the post, eQSL just isn’t the same (can’t comment on LOTW as I don’t use it, but I guess it would be just as impersonal).


Far more…

73 de Guru

Hello Jan-Martin,

Reference is there: Conference at Varna on 25/09/2014.
Ref: VA14_C3_REC_10


How does LoTW know that DL1XYZ/M is mobile in Germany, but M/DL1XYZ is operating from England?


Walt (G3NYY)

I don’t know if it is a general IARU recommendation, but the RSGB are now actively discouraging the use of paper QSLs whenever possible. November 2015 RadCom, page 10.

By the way, there are no QSL cards in LoTW - not even ones that you print yourself. It’s just an on-line database which matches your log against the other station’s log.

Walt (G3NYY)

[quote=“G3NYY, post:24, topic:11996”]How does LoTW know[/quote]IIRC you have to give the appropriate DXCC when you create the key for the call, in which case the answer is “it doesn’t until you tell it!” :wink:

[quote=“G3NYY, post:25, topic:11996”]actively discouraging the use of paper QSLs[/quote]What am I going to do with the thousands of blank ones I have stashed away… :wink:

73, Rick M0LEP

Exactly my point Walt, which is why I said, I would not like to be the author or maintainer of a world-wide QSLing system !


The keyword Walt is use a regexp or Regular Expression.

Here is a regexp the SOTA database uses in its Microwave Distance code:

match = Regex.Match(pattern, @“%QRA%[A-Z]{2}[0-9]{2}[A-Z]{2}%”);

That looks for things that look like %ORA%IO83JA% or %ORA%IL39CD% in the comment field and uses that and the summit’s own locator to feed in a Great Circle distance routine (a bit of spherical triganomics).

You need to approach the callsign and find the root call out of the chars provided, finding CEPT prefixes and removing them, portable & mobile suffixes etc. Well designed regexps etc. will work for massive majority of the call signs. After that you’ll need some special code for all the stuff that doesn’t get accepted.

It’s tedious code to write and maintain but not impossible.

You tell it; the DXCC is embedded in the signing key. In fact you can have more than one signing key for the same callsign. I actually do. I have signing keys for MO1MAJ/M for both England and Scotland. Signing the right QSOs with the right key is the user’s problem.

LoTW is a bit of a faff to use but it is pretty well engineered.

Which reminds me that it’s about time I uploaded some logs…




Yes, regexes would be tedious.

I’d look at this as a mini-language and use lexing and parsing tools. Should be able to do it very cleanly with flex or JLex.

One nice thing about the parser approach would be the ease of rejecting or handling unknown or creative call sign usage, like amateurs who like to use /MM for “maritime mobile”. As they show up, I’d add special handling to get those right.

Under the hood, regexes and JLex both create finite state machines, so they would be similarly fast.

I did something similar for TTL and JAN part numbers about twenty years ago. One of our search engine customers was a semiconductor vendor.


Gerald, thanks for the link, but they don’t exactly discourage paper QSLs. They only promote “responsible QSLing”, something that I can agree with, and give a few recommendations that may be useful in some cases. However, I’d like to see/hear the operator that asks about QSLing in the middle of a typical 7.032 MHz SOTA pile-up … :wink:

73, Jan-Martin

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Oh it happens Jan-Martin! I have been running a huge pile-up on 40m or 20m CW, working 4 stations per minute, when out of the blue, the next calling station gives me a report - and then his name, QTH, rig, antenna, power and local weather. I always find that strange when that happens as merely 30 seconds prior listening would be sufficient to determine how I was operating!

(xkcd: Regular Expressions)

That regex is wrong :slight_smile: (the pattern has a QRA, the search terms you talk about are ORA - someone compiled me with -strict and -pedantic today…)


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