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relax, don't do it...

Steve G1XOW
Steve G1XOW Member ✭✭
edited June 2020 in New Ideas
The 2 recent threads on this forum
(6500 power output, and the power button issue) have left a dark uncomfortable cloud over the forums value to the wider user-base. There are over 3000 members on this forum, yet only a small handful feel able (willing) to contribute to topics. We should all being asking why that is?

A small number of people are really helpful and expect nothing in return. However, some project an intolerant and authoritarian (often protectionist) position, as though some kind of self-appointed experts and gate keepers for FRS.

Their input is often not helpful and carries no authority. Yet by jumping to defend FRS (even on topics where no real defence is necessary) they tend to do more harm than good. This will make people unwilling to ask for help on problems and/or suggest ideas, leading to frustration and a feeling of being put down or simply discounted by them, and therefore by inference by FRS as well (which is not the case).

This “attitude” within the forum feeds resentment at the other end of the scale too., where people are venting their spleen in anger and frustration about relatively minor technical issues. They create brand-new forum accounts (e.g. Sam Johnson 0 posts, 0 likes) to gain some attention. Why?, I assume they probably feel the need to make a big noise in order to get heard about a small but highly frustrating issue, yet at the same time fear being shot down for suggesting something may in fact be wrong or could be improved [gasp].

Both of the extreme ends of this vocal spectrum are unhelpful. It’s my belief that the vast majority of Flex users (the other 2,900 in the middle-ground) are suffering, and overall the FRS brand and the products future [our radios] would suffer in consequence. These middle-ground people have genuine input, concerns, problems, ideas, product expectations, wish-lists etc. yet they don’t want to fight against the constant flack and ego-massaging of the vocal and opinionated minority in order to be heard.

We all want the same thing in the end - the best radio we can get. Personally I want to read all the daft ideas, and the problems, no matter how crazy they sound. I can do that without someone strangling the topic at birth, simply because it doesn’t match their personal ideology for the product. We need to encourage radical unbridled “out of the box” thinking and thus gain a radically better product from it.

Flex Is a consumer product being sold in to a consumer market - to amateurs, not professionals. It isn’t some high-end scientific work of art that is destined to sit in a glass cabinet and be goggled at in awe. We want it to do stuff, great stuff, stuff that we can all use and enjoy, and be very proud of the results we get from it.

I fear that we might be unwittingly working towards a utopia (for some) that the F6k is only right for the minority of (sophisticated) users and uber-geeks. This would create an elitist market position and dissuade the majority of the market from wanting one. In time that will undermine the products’ future. Flex has to be mass market product, it must sell lots and lots of hardware and even more software. There is little new to come from the SDR hardware arena for a good while yet, software is the money spinner and that has to be feature rich and enticing FRS needs to be appealing to almost all hams (no matter how experienced they are). To do anything else would be a self-defeating prophecy.

Guys, instead of picking fault with the above, why not have a moment of quiet reflection.

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Comments

  • Jim Gilliam
    Jim Gilliam Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016

    I just read this self-serving bunch of garage. I am getting sick of this whole forum with these intolerably long-winded self serving dialogues that serve no purpose. I am off this forum as of now...I can't take this **** any longer.


    Jim, K6QE

  • Mike va3mw
    Mike va3mw Member ✭✭
    edited February 2018
    Steve

    I was going to write the same thing at some point.  Thanks for doing this.  A great example of the 80/20 rule.

    Mike va3mw
  • Walt - KZ1F
    Walt - KZ1F Member ✭✭
    edited November 2016
    Outstanding post Steve! Very well said!
  • Barry N1EU
    Barry N1EU Member ✭✭
    edited February 2017
    I'm not sure why I don't see a "Like" link at the bottom of Steve's post, but I like it  ;-)
  • Walt - KZ1F
    Walt - KZ1F Member ✭✭
    edited November 2016
    where it's an idea (and very good one at that) there is a vote button up top.
  • Barry N1EU
    Barry N1EU Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016
    thanks Walt (duh)
  • Marty Bluhm
    Marty Bluhm Member
    edited July 2016
    Amen! Couldn't agree more. Especially the last major paragraph. 73 Marty W8AKS
  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 2018
    This was an interesting weekend. Even Gerald got into it to explain things and was told he was dead wrong. There were some who could learn and others just never got their heads around his comments. I don't see it as a black cloud, around here. It is an open foum, it happens.

    But as said above by Steve, taking time to reflect before a knee **** comment is best, not really in those words...I wish I had a couple times.
  • Terry K8EET
    Terry K8EET Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016
    Well said Steve,

    I think most of us have used software that over time got so bloated with features that we discontinued using it.  Let's not let that happen to Flex. 
  • KC9NRN
    KC9NRN Member
    edited October 2016

    Well said.

  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 2018
    Terry, I feel this is the beauty of SSDR. the method of API to make the radio do what ever we dream up and keeping the SSDR light. AS you know HPSDR is very large and needs a lot of horse power to run, they are always upgrading computers to handle it all. Glad to leave that all behind.
  • Jim  KJ3P
    Jim KJ3P Member ✭✭
    edited April 2020
    Good words, Steve.

    I always hesitate to jump in with "me too" praise, or, in response to an alleged equipment problem, "it's working OK here."  I just don't want to add to the noise floor.

    But I feel compelled to say that, as an owner of three Flex radios spanning a few years, and now landing on my best radio yet (6500), I have never had one bit of trouble with Flex radios.  All upgrades went smoothly, all hardware worked as promised, and this was for radios in daily service in all kinds of modes and antennas.  When you think about it, this is a remarkable statement for such a cutting edge piece of technology.  Flex should be justifiably proud of their products and accomplishments.

    As is the "problem" with so many other issues in life, the silent majority of Flex users are happily making QSOs, and investigating the deep features of their radios.  If a power button pops off (I've had this happen on a $250,000 video production console), they'll either pop the button back on, or (quietly) ask Flex about it.  Thankfully, we've all become pretty good at analyzing the "customer reviews" and comments here in the Flex Community, on eHam, as well as on Amazon and other online vendors.  It's amazingly simple to detect the wise guys, ignorant guys, and those guys who just don't "get it."  Anyone who doesn't purchase an item because of one outlier complaint, in the midst of hundreds of glowing reviews, deserves his fate.

    I'm sure there's a psychology major somewhere working on a master's thesis about this phenomenon and the small-minded "flames" that some folks seem prone to on social media.  Thanks for caring.
  • K4MT
    K4MT Member
    edited July 2016
    Nothing better could be said. Your right
  • K4MT
    K4MT Member
    edited July 2018
    I have owned Flex radios since the 5000A and until a short while ago I have been using this community.

    Those fan-boys that think Flex needs defending and try to dismiss any problem someone reports offer not one single thing to this forum.  Posting problems as well as praise will help Flex make these products even better.  But I myself, and several other users I know will not post here often because the fan-boys will go for your throat.

    I see no benefit in this forum unless its a way for all of us to work together and help each other and make people feel comfortable about asking questions or discussing problems.

    I love my Flex radio but the reality is no radio is perfect and problems are going to arise if being hardware/software or cockpit errors.  All of the above need to be handles with courtesy to encourage participation.

    Also how many possible Flex customers come to this community to fin out what flex is all about?  What do they think about the rude behavior they see.  Had I come here before I purchased a Flex I most likely would have been turned off by these people who propose to speak on behalf of the Flex Company and would have never owned one of these fine radios.
  • Michael Coslo
    Michael Coslo Member
    edited July 2016
    Steve - I am in my own mind convinced that if a person wants to become proficient in the use of software defined radios, one must become proficient in software and therefore computers.

    I also believe that the Maestro is an attempt to remove some of that acumen. However as a person who does a lot of computer support at the individual level, even that can be an issue. This isn't trying to be rude, but a simple fact. I'm convinced that any of these folk who have issues can teach me a thing or two. But like it or not, 

    However, is there no psychological alowance when someone calls a radio that has performed flawlessly for me "a piece of ****"? If we were to take the liberty of a more extreme example, a person who calls a beloved family member  by some nasty pejorative will likely get an unpleasant response from other members of the family.  As one person here told me once, when I wondered if there was a possibility of separating the Maestro posts from the others, that I should just keep quiet. I do a lot more.

    As in all matters here on earth, like tends to be responded to with like. I try to inject a little humor by offering to take the offended's radio off their hands for the price of postage, but haven't had that offer taken up yet. It's a real offer by the way.

    But here is the thing. It's called "The tragedy of the commons" A person venting about the radio being "****" is atteched to the group with the same gravitas as the Elmer who posts helpful answers for many people that have issues. And as the Tragedy of the commons and UseNet show, the helpful end up losing that battle. 

    I guess I would ask the question of how would you respond to someone who posts a message like that?  I try to use a little humor, and point out th obvious, such as a radio under warranty deserves a help ticket. But I'll be drowned out.




  • Michael Coslo
    Michael Coslo Member
    edited July 2016
    One thing odd about your comment - you say you would not have purchased a Flex radio because you have issues with some of it's users? I'm having difficulty understanding the logic, and please forgive me if I have offended you, I am honestly curious, and will apologize again if you are.

    I don't consider myself making a fanboy reaction, but I do not find that the Flex Radio determines the personality of the user. I would have bought one for it's performance. There are simply too many people in the world, with too many personalities and foibles for their personality to force my equipment decisions. 
  • Terry K8EET
    Terry K8EET Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016
    Bill,

    I understand the beauty of SDR. I am one of what is probably the majority of FLEX owners in that in almost two years of operation with my 6500 I have never had a problem with the hardware or any upgrades.  Not that there aren't occasions where something happens that can not be explained or repeated on a regular basis. Those things happen with my computer on a regular basis.  I spend more time operating than thinking of things I wish my Flex would do.  I don't want to see it loaded down with menus and features I'll never use. Put the pressure on the manufacturers of amps, tuners, etc. to be compatible with Flex. 
  • G8ZPX
    G8ZPX Member
    edited July 2016
    Michael, I did not say that. You may have misread?

    I do have concerns about where some people want the product to go, and their own influence on that process. However, I have owned a Flex since the 1000, the 3000, the 5000a, and then F6300.

    F6k has some way to go before being perfect, and I look forward to lots of improvements (mainly software). That being said it is still the best radio I have ever owned.

    Rest assured, I won't be selling it just because a minority make inappropriate QRM.
  • K4MT
    K4MT Member
    edited July 2016
    To me owning a radio is about performance and the ability to have a quality users group to discuss features, problems and general operation.  I like a good user community and I have always checked out the forums before buying a radio to see what other people are doing with and experiencing with their radio.

    The fact you ask that question means you will not understand.  A person should be able to comment  on their radio and even if those comment are not positive without being slammed by a bunch of fan boys that tell you the issue cant possibly happen and you must be a **** or incompetent. 

    I really hate to even post here because of the caustic comments.  No where on the mission of this forum says you have the be a flex radio lover to be here or even own a flex.

    All people who post here deserve courtesy and a genuine effort by the group to help them.  If you dont like what they post then put your keyboard down and walk away.  If you can be objective and offer assistance then do so in a helpful manner.

    For me a bad user group does not reflect well on the product.
  • Walt - KZ1F
    Walt - KZ1F Member ✭✭
    edited November 2016
    I would consider someone who calls the radio a piece of junk, garbage, whatever to be in, perhaps an ill-advised, moment of hyperbole. As I am not them, that is merely a guess. It's on a par with calling the rank and file unsophisticated. It's when you get in their face, effectively calling them out, some, perhaps most, will respond in kind, which I took to be precisely Steve's point. I was surprised that thread went on as long as it did last night, completely awed it continued this morning. Don't people have day jobs? See my post from yesterday about Observation. When you poke a bear, it will, generally speaking, poke back. Plus, the op in those cases is ALREADY upset, salt, wound, you know? @Gerald, you would be, likely, a happier camper if you had taken your wife out yesterday. :-)
  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    That makes little sense, the product is first rate..lol

    K4MT..I don't think anyone is against what your saying. But when a person asked something, or wondering about something not work properly has been answered by Flex, or helped by someone and they just continue to slam Flex and we speak out about it makes us a FAN BOY,,well then?

    But your point is well taken, understood.
  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    I think Gerald needs a hobby?
  • Ken - NM9P
    Ken - NM9P Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016
    Thanks for the kind words.
  • Walt - KZ1F
    Walt - KZ1F Member ✭✭
    edited November 2016
    Indeed! Ken, in the 3+ years that I have been on here, for the time since I noticed your posts, you have been, and continue to be, the poster guy for calm. You are a terrific representative for Flex. You were one of their better choices.

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