Over the past decade or so, chasers have become accustomed to hearing me run stations quickly, as if in a contest. During yesterday’s activations, though, they must have been asking themselves, “what’s his problem???” – it generally took me 30 seconds to a minute to pick up a new chaser and respond. So here is an explaination, and a request.
Over the past year I have been losing my eyesight, and I’m now down to between 5 and 10% visual acuity in both eyes. This makes logging a big challenge! I’ve tried various methods/solutions, and right now my approach is this: us a large tablet (Galaxy Tab) running VKporta-log, an audio announcing keypad (Blind Accessibility Keyboard), and the Android zooming function.
Sadly, from the time I hear a callsign until it is entered into VK is generally at least 30 seconds, and if I make an error, correcting it takes a long time. And unfortunately there might be some errors in my log, so my apologies. So sometimes it can be up to a minute before I enter the callsign and respond on the air. Meanwhile the calling stations continue to bombard me with their calls (something I used to enjoy!). Only if I recognize a familiar call can it go a bit faster. But to go between letters and numbers, I must switch versions of the blind keyboard with audio feedback, and then go back to letters again. Add to all this that I sometimes hit the wrong key and end up exiting the program or going somewhere else unintended.
`I have yet to find a better solution; I’ve tried having a friend do the loogin, making an audio recording, etc. I don’t want to give up SOTA if I don’t have to. But I might limit the number of contacts during an activation. Chasers, I ask your understanding and patience, and if I don’t get to you or seem to ignore you, please accept my apologies. I’ll try to stay QRV as long as I can and work you all, or as long as I don’t throw up my hands in frustration.