I refer to the dark side as the "automated" side. I understand studying propagation. But when "spotting" stations show far greater activity than "human operating" stations I have to ask what is happening to "human" operating in general. One may call up propagation sites and wonder at the number and location of stations that heard you. Wonderful. Without any human contact? Not much fun. I do operate PSK-31 (as far into the digital world as I have roamed) and even here I notice many weeks of little or no activity, followed by a day or two of a flurry of activity. Checking spots I found my signal reported every day I called CQ w/o responses. My question is what happened to operating stations? If the robots are hearing me so well, how come responses are zilch? I've worked DX with 18W on PSK-31. However, it's always the same handful of operators. After getting the same stations in my log a half dozen times I start to wonder how many operators are actually active. No doubt FT-8 certainly got a lot of folks interested in digital modes. But activity seems to be limited to flurries. What happened to the days that operators on the air were common on multiple modes? It was like that at one time...and with fewer licensees than exist today. The end of ham radio won't be because of the plethora of modes developed...it will be because people stop getting on the air.