[fr] Je suis à la conférence Lift12 à Genève ces prochains jours. Voici mes notes de sessions.
Mobile access in South Africa looks great from a distance, but isn’t that wonderful once you zoom in. Zimbabwe: same thing, good coverage along big highways, but kind of crap elsewhere.
Other issue: it’s actually very expensive. Upto 50% or more of their income on mobile services. steph-note: did I get that right?
That raises the cost of innovation. Less resilience: single point of failure.
Internet infrastructure vs. telephone infrastructure.
1999: better computer through more refined computer power. At the same time, Page and Brin are improving computing by multiplying commodity PCs (superfluous computing, redundancy).
Similar: scaffolding in the US (minimal, calculated, each rod can support x weight) and in Uganda, Ethiopia (steph-note: and India)… doesn’t matter what the individual quality of the sticks are.
Copper is too expensive as a commodity. Wireless access. Not very expensive. Ubiquitous. Wifi devices will surpass mobile phones in numbers this year.
Many routers run on open source software => hack the device. Inside, but also outside. You can send a signal really far by attaching an empty can to the antenna.
Get a bunch of smart hackers together. Make it simple. Plug an ordinary phone into a wireless wifi network. Needed an analog telephony adaptor. Hence the MeshPotato was born. Not your average wifi device! Tougher, power surge resistant, can be powered by wind, solar, etc.
- open source
- open hardware
In practice? Device needs to be outside. Mesh network. No towers involved.
East Timor: monopoly telco, so MeshPotato used to create an alternate, cheaper, network.
South Africa: used to bring the internet 40km away from where it was.
Plumbing manufacturer in Johannesburg: cheaper solution deployed throughout the company to keep everyone in touch.
Photosynth: takes multiple photos to create a higher-resolution one. No reason we couldn’t do this with wifi.
Laurent: if one node of the MeshPotato network gets connected to the internet, the whole local network gets connected.