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[liberationtech] What's up with mesh?

The Doctor drwho at virtadpt.net
Sat Jun 25 20:50:37 PDT 2011


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On 06/24/2011 08:53 PM, Danny O'Brien wrote:

> I've also been enjoying reading the FabFi blog <http://fabfi.fablab.af/blog/>,
> which is very frank about its successes and failures
http://fabfi.fablab.af/blog/

Their work is incredible.  We (the Byzantium dev team) are considering
getting in touch with them because their improvised long-haul wifi work
fills a design requirement of our project.  It came up at the sprint
last night that their designs would be ideal for our how-to book, and
we'd like to get permission to put a version of it at least into the
Creative Commons-licensed work.

> I guess my meta-question would be: if people want to be involved, but
> don't have a strong sense of which individual project to ally with, who
> should they be following, and where should they be going?

What goals are you personally concerned with?  Access?  Applications?
Telephony?  Gatewaying to the Net?  Do you want to work on policy, or do
you want to work on hardware, or do you want to work on software?
Toward what end?

Byzantium, at least, is concerned with making a mesh that everyone can
use possible by distributing a live distribution of Linux with
everything that would be needed on the OS and userspace ends included.
Right now we're working on the first four layers of the OSI stack to
support everything above that in the model.

> http://wirelesssummit.org/ seems to be the most obvious starting point
> (either by watching the videos or attending). Is there any other good
> online clearing house for information?

A few of us mesh hackers will be going to ContactCon
(http://contactcon.com/) in October of 2011.

You might find some useful information here:
http://p2pfoundation.net/The_Foundation_for_P2P_Alternatives

We have notes, research, and writeups here for Byzantium:
http://wiki.hacdc.org/index.php/Byzantium

What else are you looking for?

> Oh, and are people settling on a common routing standard? Will all of
> these devices be able to mesh with each other?

BATMAN-adv seems to getting a lot of use these days (probably more in
the future because it's been integrated into the mainline Linux kernel
tree and is being heavily developed these days).  802.11s is also in the
kernel but the OLPC probably left a bad taste in people's mouths.  Our
experiments with Babel have been, well.. to work around wonky APs at the
dev sprint last night one of us set up a mesh for visitors to use in
less than five minutes (with DHCP and DNS resolution).  I hasten to add
that our visitors didn't have to install anything on their laptops or
phones to make use of the mesh.

For what it's worth, it's pretty easy to bridge meshes.  During one of
the early Byzantium experiments we were able to link BATMAN-adv and
Babel nets without any trouble (one of the functions of routers is
sorting out nets running different (routing) protocols, anyway).

- -- 

The Doctor [412/724/301/703]

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WWW: http://drwho.virtadpt.net/

Always do right.  This will gratify many people, and astonish the rest.

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