YFKlog: A console-based QSO logging program

March 27, 2009 1:44 PM

I stumbled upon YFKlog looking for a QSO logging program that could use a MySQL database as a storage medium. What I found was a console-based QSO logging program that was simple, easy to use, and felt like it was just what I was looking for.

As you can see from the picture, the interface is brightly colored! You can also see, I don't make a lot of contacts yet (seems I spend too much time at school and not enough time on HF!). The coloring of the window I think is dependent on the colors you have set up with your terminal.

What do I like about this logging program? First and foremost would be the use of MySQL. This means I can keep all my contacts in a database that other programs can interface with, like a web-based logbook browser, which I'm stil working on developing and implementing here on the site. Using a database means I can also pull information relatively easily for use in my ASCII-art QSL cards. I also like the console-based interface. If I want to use the software from a different location and don't have YFKlog installed on it, I can just SSH into one of my other machines and use YFKlog from there! Having a system like this that maintains a central database is key for me, since I won't always be at the same computer when I get on the air.

What I don't like about the program, is the control of it is done via F-keys. This is not generally a problem, but my F-keys are assigned to do other things (like Spaces on my Mac) and I run into conflicts while trying to use the software depending on what machine I happen to be using at the time. There doesn't appear to be any option yet to change this behavior (aside from modifying the source code, of course). The other thing I wish the program had? Logging of addresses for contacts. Maybe the address they want you to QSL to is different than the address you can get at QRZ. QRZ integration is something I'd also like to see in YFKlog, which would make it kind of similar to Ham Radio Deluxe's logging feature.

All things considered, YFKlog fits my needs better than any other logging system I've played with thus far. It's one I think I'm going to keep around and it should be interesting to watch it grow.