Want to track sats with Amateur Radio on them?
Internet is nice, but you can talk real-time with astronauts aboard the ISS and the Shuttle via Amateur Radio with a simple Technician class license. No code required for any class of ham radio license any more and the Tech is the easiest license to earn.
Cost of gear would be maybe $400-$700 for a decent VHF FM rig, directional antenna and a power supply. I have known people to talk to ISS using a handheld radio (HT, or "Handie-Talkie") running 5 watts and a small handheld beam antenna.