Is Ham Radio an unreasonable hobby?
Many people consider ham radio operators as unreasonable people, because, ham radio operators are always interested to run their own communication network with entirely personel effort inspite of the existence of the other reliable communication facilities . Despite phenomenal advances in the field of communication, especially through worldwide networks like the INTERNET, amateur radio has not lost its charm. It never can. This is due to the fact that self-reliance has always been the trade-mark of a ham radio operator.
For hams, INTERNET is no match for their ham radios. Besides, communication on ham radio does not cost anything (Although computers are commonplace now in Amateur Radio shacks, it is a relatively new technology and there are a large number of Amateur Radio operators who are embracing this technology for the first time when they explore the world of digital communications, such as packet radio. It was during the 1970s that we saw the dawning of this new Computer Age. Until then, computers were the exclusive domain of the Scientific Community and Large Business or Government organisations. To have a computer in the home was unheard of, even in the early 70s. Some amateurs who also happened to be computer enthusiasts, might have been involved from the beginning, but for most it is only since the mid 80s that computers have made their presence felt).
Even the great experimenter Marconi was considered to be an unreasonable person.One night in December 1894, an excited 19 year old Marconi called his mother to his electrical laboratory and showed her his experimental apparatus, a wireless transmitter comprising accumulators, induction coil, Leyden jars and a Hertzian radio oscillator on one side of the room; and on the otherside a coherer receiver, battery, electromagnetic relay and electric bell-which together made up the receiver. Marconi pressed the signalling key of his transmitter. To his mother's awe and astonishment, the bell on the other side of the room started ringing which had no wire connection with the key. When next morning, Signara Marconi proudly told her husband of their son's achievement, the inventor's father was only scathing about his son's discoveries and remarked dismissively that it seemed a round about way of working a perfectly ordinary bel a few yards' distance! Marconi was denied study in Itali's Naval Academy. He could not even enroll in the Bologna University as he failed the entrance test.
Source: 'Did You Know?'-by Eric Westman : Practical Wireless, March 1984, pp 71.