in atc people say, for example, 'dragon 426 with you information mike', what does information mike mean? and information bravo, lima, etc? is there a general name for all of these?
renita: Like others have said, that's the ATIS, which stands for Automatic Terminal Information Service. It is a recorded continuous broadcast of information for the airport terminal area. It contains weather information, wind speed and direction, which runways are active, available approaches, and NOTAMs. Pilots listen to the ATIS before contacting the tower or ATC to relieve frequency congestion. ATIS can change when there is an update to that information.
The recording is updated when there is a significant change in the information, like a change in the active runway. It is given a letter from the phonetic alphabet. The pilot will tell the tower that they have "information Charlie" so ATC knows the pilot has the information.
ATIS starts with "Alpha" everyday and goes down through the entire phonetic alphabet and starts over if need be.
Sometimes the tower controllers have fun with it. I once flew on Thanksgiving day, and information Golf happened to be up when I was ready to taxi to the run up. The current ATIS was called "information gobble, gobble, gobble" the gobbles were said in a funny high pitched voice. So of course I said I had information "gobble, gobble, gobble!"
The pilot is indicating that he has listened to the most recent ATIS report and is aware of local conditions. Now you need to go find out what ATIS is.
Mike's the guys name doing the talking.