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    ARRL LOGBOOK OF THE WORLD GOES LIVE! The long-awaited QSL-cardless ARRL awards and contact credit system Logbook of the World (LoTW) officially opened for
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 30, 2003
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      The long-awaited QSL-cardless ARRL awards and contact credit system
      "Logbook of the World" (LoTW) officially opened for business this
      Within its first five days of operation, the system--which is open to
      all--already had attracted more than 1000 requests for a digital
      certificate, the essential pass key to LoTW.

      "Although Logbook of the World is a tremendous resource for hams
      DXCC, VHF/UHF Century Club (VUCC), Worked All States (WAS) and other
      awards, we hope it will appeal to hams who are not currently active in
      these awards programs," said ARRL Chief Operating Officer Mark Wilson,
      K1RO. "The proliferation of logging software has stimulated activity
      interest in contesting, and submitting log data and verifying award
      credits online is a logical next step."

      Data integrity has been a watchword of the LoTW since the project's
      conception, and that starts with a digital certificate. Obtaining a
      digital certificate involves a combination of on-line filing and good
      old-fashioned snail mail. The first step is to visit the ARRL Logbook
      the World Web page <http://www.arrl.org/lotw>, download the LoTW
      and request a digital certificate that ties the participant's
      identity to
      a digital key.

      "We will need to verify you are who you say you are," ARRL Membership
      Services Manager Wayne Mills, N7NG, explains. "The security of the
      system depends heavily on the method used for verifying the user's
      identity." This first step is called authentication. Everyone who
      plans to
      use LoTW first must obtain a digital certificate. There are no
      For US amateurs, this process relies on your mailing address in the
      database, which must be current.

      For non-US amateurs, authentication will rely on other documentation,
      primarily a copy of the participant's Amateur Radio license and
      official identifying document. Mail these copies to ARRL, Logbook of
      World Administrator, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111 USA.

      Assuming everything goes smoothly, US licensees requesting a digital
      certificate soon will receive a postcard in the mail that contains a
      password."The first batch of postcards has been mailed, and some
      have uploaded their passwords," Wilson said. "Those will be checked,
      the first batch of digital certificates should be e-mailed to users
      September 22."

      Users then should go to the LoTW Web site and enter the password to
      complete the processing of their certificate request. Once the
      has been entered, the digital certificate will be e-mailed within a
      working day or two. Non-US stations will receive their digital
      certificates via e-mail once their documentation has been received at
      Headquarters and authenticated.

      Participants will use their digital certificates to "sign" and upload
      either Amateur Data Interchange Format (ADIF) or Cabrillo-formatted
      Participants also may use their primary digital certificates to obtain
      additional certificates necessary to submit log data and obtain award
      credit for contacts made under formerly held call signs.

      At the heart of the Logbook of the World concept will be a huge
      of log data provided by operators--from individual DXers and
      contesters to
      major DXpeditions--and maintained by ARRL. Mills says the system will
      benefit big and little guns alike by providing quick QSO credit for
      ARRL-sponsored awards, especially DXCC.

      Obtaining a digital certificate and uploading log data are free of
      There will be a per-QSO charge for each contact credit used, but Mills
      expects it will be much less than the typical costs involved with
      exchanging paper QSL cards. When you use an LoTW confirmation for an
      credit, the fee will be added to your account and shown in the user's
      record. The user will be able to pay for these charges on-line using a
      credit card.

      Mills' article, "Introducing Logbook of the World," appears in the
      issue of QST. LoTW news and announcements will be posted to the
      Logbook of
      the World Web site <http://www.arrl.org/lotw/>.

      Wilson commended ARRL Web and Software Development Department Manager
      Bloom, KE3Z, and the other contributors to the project "for their
      dedication and hard work that made Logbook a reality."

      The ARRL Letter
      Vol. 22, No. 37
      September 19, 2003
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