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[liberationtech] [HacDC:Byzantium] Request from a Researcher

Eugen Leitl eugen at
Sun Jan 27 02:35:51 PST 2013

----- Forwarded message from The Doctor <drwho at> -----

From: The Doctor <drwho at>
Date: Sat, 26 Jan 2013 16:08:00 -0500
To: Byzantium at
Subject: Re: [HacDC:Byzantium] Request from a Researcher
Reply-To: Byzantium at
Organization: Virtual Adept Networks, Unlimited
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On 01/21/2013 02:17 PM, Rachel B wrote:

> talk to me. I have been a longtime lurker to this community, and I 
> thought that I had done enough lurking and introduce myself. I am

Welcome to the Byzantium list!

> specifically interested in learning more about how Byzantium has
> already been used in emergency situations and what people learned
> from those experiences. I know that what I'm asking seems a little
> vague right now, so I would be happy to clarify to anyone
> interested.

The last time Byzantium Linux was used in an emergency situation was
during the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy in New York City.  We built a
version of Byzantium specifically for the use case of restoring
connectivity to the rest of the global Net if there was a gateway
because responders were encountering great difficulties coordinating
with one another and with external organizations.

We learned a lot of things there, chief among them that rapid
deployment is essential.  Sandy was the reason we built an
autoconfiguration daemon which pretty much takes the user out of the
loop insofar as configuring a Byzantium node is concerned, which frees
them up to do other things (like clearing out wreckage).

Unfortunately, we also learned the hard way that you can't necessarily
count on assistance from people during a disaster situation.  There
was an organization up there that promised assistance (in the form of
computers that could be used as Byzantium nodes) that changed their
mind at the last minute, which forced us to fall back on a backup
plan.  What we took away from this was that interoperability with
other mesh projects is essential, so we added interoperability with
the Commotion Wireless project while we were up there (and got it
working on the first try).  Since that time, we've been working with
other wireless network projects on automatic, transparent

On that point, I'll open things up to Sitwon and Haxwithaxe.

> If this is the place to look for and ask around, great! If not, no

You came to the right mailing list.

> problem. I'm happy for any lead that you can offer. On a personal
> note, I'm very happy that this project exists and was even lucky
> enough to snag a copy at CarolinaCon. Still haven't had the chance
> to play around with it, but I hope that could change soon.

Glad to hear it!  We'll definitely let you know when the next release
comes out.

Welcome to the 'list.

- -- 
The Doctor [412/724/301/703] [ZS|Media]
Developer, Project Byzantium:

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Eugen* Leitl <a href="">leitl</a>
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