Signal Lounge needs your input! :-)

First things first - WELCOME and thanks for coming! :smiley:

The idea here is to kick the tyres of an idea to set up a website covering “modern” amateur wireless activity (see the about page for the basic idea). This is a thread to discuss your thoughts and ideas on this topic.

The theme here is self-training and developing amateur wireless tech stuff, mostly “modern” (although I can’t guarantee stuff from SolderSmoke won’t appear!). The aim for the site is to have several pillars:

  • Featured Projects - links out to interesting projects that may be looking for people to get involved. It’s good for the projects and it shows that there are interesting things being developed in amateur radio.

  • Resources - links out to resources that may help you ‘up your game’ in relevant radio/electronics/making skills e.g. SDR, CPLD, etc. It’s good for you, the hobby, maybe your career, all that good stuff.

  • News - this is just curated RSS aggregation from relevant sites (e.g. Myriad-RF, GHz Europe, Hackaday, etc.). It may be the least imaginative pillar but it may serve as inspiration to people, introduce people to new things and show that there is new stuff happening out there all the time.

  • Help Wanted/ Guns For Hire - This is where I hope two kinds of users find each other: people with projects who want help and people browsing for projects.

  • Interviews - Long-term ambition… I’m thinking about trying some podcast-style interviews with inspirational engineer types. I enjoy listening to podcasts and some of the interviews I’ve heard have really inspired me or led me to new things. Maybe audio, maybe transcript articles, let’s see how this goes… for starters I may simply post links pointing to existing interviews that are out on the web.

So, how can you help…?

  • Do you have ideas for more resources for the progressive ham looking to learn new skills?

  • Do you know of any more featured projects who may be looking for more ‘meat’ to work on them?

    • Is one of these projects yours? Care to write us a better paragraph about it for the header post?
  • Ideas for more news sources or other things that would be good on a news feed?

    • Is just RSS aggregation enough? Or is some personality needed to introduce the aggregated content? I think this needs some work to bring it up to a nice readable state like great sites like Myriad RF and GHz Europe…
    • …and given there are great sites already out there like Myriad RF and GHz Europe, is this idea just duplicating stuff and/or treading on toes?
  • How would you use such a site? Is there some social media integration that needs to be done to make this kind of site part of people’s routine? Or do people still bookmark stuff and look in on sites occasionally?

  • Better web design. This basic WordPress site is probably sufficient to kick the ideas around but I do have some specific questions about pulling “featured images” into posts that maybe someone with some RSS/ TT-RSS/ IFTTT experience might be able to help me with?

This is a new site so bear that in mind. This will hopefully grow, it may change significantly, it might just go nowhere… If I can create something that helps even just a few people I will be happy.

There you have it great people, over to you… what do you think? There’s a bunch of questions above, feel free to answer in this topic below or break out into a new topic if you feel that’s appropriate.


1 Like

Hi @admin,

This site sounds awesome. I’m not very active on the radio, but, as you know, I keep my oar in the water by listening to podcasts like LHS. I think it’s important to differentiate yourself from the other sites! I like that you’ve got a defined set of work that you’re aiming towards, but I do worry that you’ve got a lot here that you want to do! That said, it’s worth being ambitious! :slight_smile:

The first thing most people are likely to see is the blog, which is primarily republished content (which is fine). However, as it’s almost all re-published content, it’s probably worth having a “page” as the front-page of the site, and then link to the “republished news”, rather than have a list of the posts as the front page. This page should be similar to your “About” page, explaining what you’re trying to achieve with the site, and link on to the types of content you’ll see on the blog. It’s probably worth bumping the “More” column to the top left, and perhaps hide the “Categories” widget, as it’s a bit odd seeing the list of all the sources there (but I do like the fact that each republished post shows the source too as a category). It’s probably worth trying to use the tags option to tie together related content (like I’m looking at your post on GNU Radio here - why is there not a link to other GNU Radio, or SDR content from here?) as this will give people who want to follow a particular thread a chance to see stuff hanging together (so the SDR tag would have your “Tutorials - GNU Radio” post, as well as the content in the “RTL-SDR” blog… probably).

It might also be worth consuming the “Help Wanted/Guns-for-hire” category of this Discourse as an RSS feed for the republish category? This is the URL: (Found after hitting this page: You can then also tag these pages to build up a larger picture!

The Interviews can definitely be created into a podcast. I think this is a separate topic, but I’d be glad to help do some test podcasts, just to see how they’d work, from the recording perspective, and also then looking at how to publish them into here.

On the featured images front, I only tend to do featured images for my own content. I get this by searching on Flickr for Creative Commons licensed - commercial use accepted - images that loosely match the names. If you get images from the republished site, then it’s worth using those as your featured image, but I don’t think there’s a way to do that with the IFTTT.

I would consider using IFTTT to republish posts to a Facebook “Page” and to twitter. If you’re also considering posting to LinkedIn, then it’s probably worth not using IFTTT, and instead using the AutoSocial plugin for Wordpress (Currently USD49). I use the standalone LinkedIn AutoPublish plugin for Wordpress which does work, but I’ve got the nagging feeling in the back of my head that it’ll be depreciated and then removed at some point in the future… Also there’s lots of nag screens saying “Please use AutoSocial instead of this one” LOL.

On the news sources front, no I don’t know any more… I’m looking forward to piggy-backing on the content you republish, to be honest :wink: I’m sure other podcasts will use you too :slight_smile:

So, yehr, I’m watching with a lot of interest!

1 Like

Hey Jon, thanks for checking in! GREAT feedback.

  • Ambitious to do list - agreed it could be big but I’m hoping that RSS feeds will bring me 90% of the news… Resources and Projects will build over time… if the site becomes useful to the right people then those people will begin to bring projects and recommend resources… that’s the hope;
  • Front page rearrangement and welcome text - agreed, all good, you’ve got a good eye;
  • Re-post of Help Wanted/ Guns-for-hire as News items - brilliant!
  • Interviews is a very new idea of mine and I’m currently trying to define what it is I’d like that to bring to the party, certainly that will involve a lot of work to make it good. I won’t give up the day-job just yet!! :wink: Agreed, good fodder for a focused topic… let’s head over here to discuss;
  • Republishing to Twitter, Facebook etc. probably is some way down the to do list at the moment. I love Twitter (I’m @G7UHN) but I’m not on Facebook so am totally ignorant there. Also all the news from the awesome GHz Europe is already posted up on Twitter so some thought as to not blatantly duplicate would be required. I’m a bit of a social media novice really.

Awesome, thank you.

Hopefully some more beta luminaries coming online soon so look forward to more thoughts, keep 'em coming people :slight_smile: