Starting with the basics
The third weekly meeting was today and things are looking good. Now that it’s clear that interest exists, we spent the meeting discussing how to move forward, both immediately and in the weeks to come.
We recently got a map up where anyone can place a pin wherever they are in NYC. This is key when it comes to organizing and finding peers near you. If you’re at all interested in joining, go over to https://nycmesh.net/map and make yourself known!
The starter kit
Setting up cjdns and communication over long distances can be accomplished in many different ways, but what we really want is a clear and simple way to get people who are interested on the network as soon as possible. Though the components we use may change over time, the following is what we plan to use to get our initial nodes setup:
- Ubiquiti Nanostation M5 to communicate with the peers in your area (~$90)
- Raspberry Pi Model B to run cjdns (~$40)
- 4GB SD Card for the Raspberry Pi to use as storage (~$5)
- 5V Micro USB Power Supply to power the Raspberry Pi (~$10)
- USB to Ethernet adapter to connect a second Ethernet cable from your Raspberry Pi to your wireless router (~$10)
- Two Ethernet cables*, one to connect your Nanostation to your Raspberry Pi, and the other to connect your Raspberry Pi to your home router (~$10/cable)
* The length of the Ethernet cables you need depends completely on your intended setup.
This means that once we have some conveniently packaged software, getting connected to the network has a one-time cost of around $175. So if you’re looking to get started right away, order away!
(Note: Most modern Android phone chargers are 5V Micro USB power supplies, so you may not need to purchase one if you have a spare lying around.)
A few of us will be working on setting up an image for the Raspberry Pi that will have cjdns (and possibly a few other tools) ready to go. The less configuration needed, the better. If you’d like to get involved in this, come join us on IRC (#nycmeshnet on EFnet).
The (near) future
The legality of sharing/providing of Internet has become a bit less complex after today’s meeting. In the meetings to come, we’ll continue to look into the viability of providing access to the Internet through the meshnet.
We’ll also be looking into how to effectively reach out to people here in New York City. Because after all, the key to a successful meshnet is an active community.
The weekly meetings will continue, so look for a post with the details on the next one. See you all next week!