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Trying to find people in Chicago for a meshnet (karmanebula.com)
66 points by normalocity 1539 days ago | hide | past | web | 30 comments | favorite

Here in WA, Australia we have/had a local meshnet for quite a while and it ran for years. I can't remember the name of it (it was called WALocalNet or something) but it worked out quite well.

Got a link to any information? Sounds interesting - would love to read up.

Could be WAFreenet (http://www.wafreenet.org/).

That's the one!

You should checkout the global meshnet map, http://atlas.projectmeshnet.org. You can add your node and help organize a meshnet in your area.

I will, thanks.

For anyone reading this that is interested in news on how this goes, but doesn't have sysadmin skills, nor access to a building, I added a simple newsletter signup field to the page.

Like desireco42, this instantly reminded me of BBSes and the days of FidoNET. While running point-to-point wireless would certainly be fun, there are infrastructure limitations (namely, roof access) that may make this project hard to achieve.

I'd much rather see a revival of a network of BBSes using POTS lines. FidoNET went to hell decades ago but the protocols and software are still worthy. It would be fun to use Fido tools (mailers, tossers, editors) to create a fun, off-the-Internet electronic forum.

This probably sounds crazy to most of the younger crowd, I'm sure. I just wish that those who grew up without modems could experience the joy of hearing your phone line ring and watching your BBS answer and receive some mail from someone on the other side of the world. The messages were routed from peer to peer by folks who were willing to pick up the tab to make long distance (and international!) phone calls.

I'm totally from this era but I don't quite have the nostalgia for it that you do. I definitely remember the joy of getting mail when the idea of spam was nonexistent, but I'm not sure I'd want to go back. That said, the protocols people want to run on top of this would be whatever people want, I would think, so if you can find enough people who wanted to do this I don't see what's stopping you. :)

Verizon and AT&T are currently working to change legislation so they can remove POTS completely. Don't expect it to be around for more than a decade except in some high-density urban areas for banking perhaps.

If only Super Wi-Fi could become a realty, mesh networks might become much more usable over large areas (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Wi-Fi)

WasabiNet is a mesh wifi network cooperative dedicated to helping bridge the digital divide in a low-income section of South St Louis


Any chance the administration of nodes for this kind of technology could be crowdsourced to the people in the neighborhood as well, giving not only access but useful knowledge and a learning experience? I know when I was young I didn't need new or expensive technology to hack on - just needed something I had regular access to.

The idea here would also be to reduce the cost of network access to near zero, or am I missing something about where the costs come from maintaining the network?

I live in chicago and meet one of their requirements. Unfortunately I don't have access to the roof of a 5+ story building. I could probably put one in the 7th floor of a west loop office though.

I should also say that the requirements aren't an all-or-nothing deal. For every node we setup we'll need people to use the network, support it, talk about it, and help maintain it. So really, no one here should be discouraged if you don't happen to have access to a semi-tall building. Please - join up and be part of the group - don't let the building access issue stop you.

Sounds good to me. We'll take what we can get.

West loop? Near 26 N Halsted at all?

Not quite. Other side of 90/94.

I work in the WCIU building. We should grab lunch sometime!

Thanks for the front page love, HN. Really wasn't expecting that. :)

check out thefnf.org, they are currently trying to organize the different mesh networks.

In Spain we have the guifi project www.guifi.net/en which works in infrastructure mode, but we are migrating to a new system called qmp and which is mesh based. This firmware is 100% auto config, and works natively over IPv6. The project came from the www.battlemesh.org hacking sessions, where they created the batman protocol.

If anyone is looking at building a mesh network, check tout these systems. They make it so much easier (and cheaper) then it used to be.

I am looking at website, I always thought this would be excellent way to communicate and if I can contribute somehow, I will. I see you are looking for people in higher buildings.

Mesh reminds me of the BBS scene I really loved, and kind of puts you in contact with your neighbors.

I suppose this also doesn't require roof access in many cases. If someone is willing (and your building super isn't going to get angry at you), you could put an antenna on a balcony the same way people would put up a satellite dish, and we get could get line-of-sight going at least in one direction from a given building.

Sounds awesome. By all means reach out and let's get something going.

Know your OTARD rules for antenna placement (occupant's rights for satellite / TV / wifi equipment):


Is there anything like this in the Bay Area?

Yes, a many-year-old effort called SFLan in San Francisco: http://archive.org/web/sflan.php

Oakland, I think just in planning stages, but see https://sudoroom.org/wiki/Mesh for lots of info.

Not sure - there's only a couple of cjdns nodes on the atlas

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