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Category: WiFi

Android is Open

We all know what Open means in Android: Android is an “open” operating system in name only. Sure, you can get the source code and mess around with it, but there are no mainstream generic Android phones that work on any carrier, and no carrier-sold phones are simple to crack open and do what you will. “Open” refers to a carrier’s ability to modify the phone’s software to its will, not the consumer or developers’. In fact, many Android phones come with garbageware installed on the phones’ home screen, with no way to remove it. Also related, Is Android Evil?

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Eye-Fi for Security

This is fun. Really. Alison DeLauzon, Reuters reports, had her camera stolen when left an equipment bag in a restaurant in Florida. The folks who allegedly took the bag also took pictures of themselves, which isn’t unusual. But DeLauzon had an Eye-Fi wireless Secure Digital (SD) card in her camera, received as a gift. The thieves apparently wandered by an open access point with the same SSID as one that DeLauzon had configured for use, and pictures of her baby and the thieves were uploaded to her picture-sharing account. Nifty.

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FON on NYTimes

Great article about FON on New York Times. It also has some good insides about the company, business model and inevitably Martin Varsavsky (Mr Jazztel, Ya.com) profile & lifestyle. FON wants to build a wireless internet infrastructure on top of a grassroots broadband movement and sell internet access for nomadic users. I’m skeptical about FON’s business model since the beginning. A community of wifi owners who sells wifi access to strangers? They have 800k+ registered members (Foneros) all over the world but scale doesn’t matter here. Where are the wifi hotspots? In the hotel, near the cafe, the store, the…

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Flashing nights

Nada me dá mais prazer do que flashar estas belezas (Fonera Atheros SoC AR2315 18 dBi) com OpenWRT não FON. O que temos nesta caixita: Architecture: MIPS 4KEc Bootloader: RedBoot System-On-Chip: Atheros AR2315 CPU Speed: 183 MHz Flash size: 8 MiB RAM: 16 MiB Wireless: Integrated Atheros 802.11b/g Ethernet: 1x RJ45 USB: No Serial: Yes JTAG: No * 5V power supply * Antenna * SPI-Bus A única coisa que sinto a falta: PoE. Para os que dão valor a throughput, o máximo que consegui entre um cliente WLAN e um FTP server ligado via WAN da Fonera foi cerca de…

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WiFi T-Shirt: best teeshirt evah

Now, that’s a t-shirt I would love: It’s a Wi-Fi detector with battery-pack that displays via a decal on a T-shirt front. It’s $30, comes in S to XXL, and detects 802.11b and 802.11g. Requires three AAA batteries (not included). The washing instructions are particularly amusing; I have had silk shirts that required less care. Hmm, and what about a LCD on it, displaying the SSID? Coolness.

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Meraki: Free the Net SF

The Free the Net San Francisco is the biggest implementation of a Meraki Mesh in a city neighborhood so far. Meraki teamed up with the local communities to setup and give away the hardware (with some local agreements with DSL providers, for the internet backhaul) and mesh know-how. So, since they’ve announced the new network I’ve been following it. It has grown very quickly for the past 2 months, over 3000 people signed up but if you look closer on the Overview Map, there’s very few nodes that are actually linked to the others, to form a so-called Mesh Network.…

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Meraki and a few impressions

I’ve been working on a Wifi Mesh experiment with Meraki Gear for the last 2 months. I was looking for a better low-cost single radio mesh alternative to the OLSR/OpenWRT platform (Freifunk Firmware). So far, the experiment is going well, it has some glitches with coverage due to the low-power radios of the Meraki Mini (60 mw), but at the end, the network really works and it has some advantages over Ad-hoc madness behavior on the standard atheros/linux code. Since last month I have 4 Meraki Minis on a 4 floor apartment complex, one per floor and the gateway linked…

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Mesh on the OLPC

If you’re into Wifi Mesh Protocols there’s interesting news on the OLPC front and MIT work. They’re developing a new protocol based on a “probalistic presence mechanism” right into the OLPC firmware. Polychronis Ypodimatopoulos, Pol for short, has developed a “probabilistic presence mechanism” in the mesh firmware for the OLPC. The presence mechanism uses a very small amount of information from packet headers to detect the presence of other nodes in the network (the ad-hoc meshing firmware in the OLPC relays packets without touching the kernel – a novel development in its own right). The other notable feature is that…

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