I'm a software engineer that works with a bunch of electrical engineers on some radar stuff. So I've been interested in learning more about the electronics, signal processing and related matters. I'm also interested in and fairly knowledgeable about orbital things already, so it seems like amsats are a natural fit.
I studied up and recently got my General, but I have basically no equipment other than some SDR dongles and a Baofeng. I did manage to cobble together a yagi that let me pull down both voice and data from a couple satellites, by waving the antenna around in what I hoped was the right direction. (I printed out the pass, but didn't and still don't have a reliable way of tracking.)
What I want to do next is basically email myself over RF via space. I know there's some store-and-forward sats, but that's about it.
I'd prefer to have an antenna that wouldn't need to track. I can limit myself to passes over X deg (say 30) to get short ranges that don't need high gain. But maybe the pass lengths won't be long enough to send and receive in that time?
What I'm really looking for is tutorials. It's pretty easy to find ones aimed at hams who don't know anything about satellites or computers. It's hard to find ones for computer- and space-savvy people who don't have a lot of practical experience with xmit/rcv.