Think of what is was like in the early days of radio. If you applied and were granted an amateur license, building your station was the only way you got 'on the air'. Every part was "homebrew", the exception being the key.
Years later, as the RF world advanced, limited kits were offered. These would arrive at your door step, ready for you to assemble. Complete with enclosure, components, knobs, switches, and instructions.
Again RF advancement (today) enables us to purchase nearly every type of transceiver and accessory need to put a station "on the air".
Computer / processor controlled SDR radios are the state of the art in equipment today.
How many of us hams today understand, even at a basic level, what's going on "under the hood"?
I don't, to the extent I would like.
My impression and expectation as a young person was that "hams" were super techno geeks who knew everything about electronics. I suppose, growing up in the 70's and 80's, that was fairly accurate, certainly more true than it is today.
Ive been inspired recently by several Amateurs I've met on the air, who use equipment they have built themselves....exclusively. I have built a K1, Rockmite, and a couple of regen receivers, but typically operate using commercially built gear. My interest in learning to understand how circuits work, and do some "homebrewing" is ever increasing.
How about you? Are you advancing the radio art thru continued learning?
Its part of our Amateur Radio DNA.