@danie10@mastodon.social avatar

Three Meshtastic nodes are active in Cape Town for off-grid communications during disasters or just to meet your neighbours

Myself and two other ham radio operators have established 3 Meshtastic nodes that will operate 24/7 to help build out more connectivity across Cape Town.

We are using license-free 868 MHz radios, so anyone can buy these cheap (ish) devices and ge ...continues

See https://gadgeteer.co.za/three-meshtastic-nodes-are-active-in-cape-town-for-off-grid-communications-during-disasters-or-just-to-meet-your-neighbours/

#capetown #Meshtastic #offgrid #southafrica #technology

Linux_in_a_Bit, (edited )
@Linux_in_a_Bit@linuxrocks.online avatar

Have you heard about RNode and Reticulum yet?
It's like Meshtastic but packet layer encrypted, unmanaged, and globally scalable.

Rnodes form Reticulum networks over LoRA.
Reticulum is a loose equivilant to TCP/IP but operates on very different principles.

You can connect over, packet radio, etc.
It's peer to peer, with nodes connecting direct peers over different mediums into a global network.

Learn more here:

@danie10@mastodon.social avatar

but tgat is over networks by looks of it? Meshtastic is over pure RF radio meshed across nodes.

Linux_in_a_Bit, (edited )
@Linux_in_a_Bit@linuxrocks.online avatar

Reticulum is designed to form interconnected, unkillable, and unmanaged peer-to-peer networks as effeciently as possible.

You can form a network using only LoRa radios just like Meshtastic.
Just connect every peer to LoRa radios and make each one run a transport node.

It vastly surpasses Meshtastic's 80 node theoretical limit by using surprisingly simple routing methods.

I strongly recommend you read these docs explaining exactly how Reticulum works:

@danie10@mastodon.social avatar

@Linux_in_a_Bit I'll have a look then a bit deeper thanks. Am already struggling to just get people to join on Meshtastic nodes though. I'm really not sure if something unknown is going to adopted any quicker. LoRa also was supposedly very lightweight on bandwidth. But let me first dive deeper into this one.

Linux_in_a_Bit, (edited )
@Linux_in_a_Bit@linuxrocks.online avatar

Yeah, that's the problem, isn't it...

I believe Reticulum has more potential in this regard however, as it has a few things that make it more appealing:

  1. Global scalability through better routing techniques
  2. Generic network stack, transports arbitrary data
  3. Not just LoRa, routes data over almost anything
  4. Full packet layer encryption

The main issues still limiting adoption are:

  1. Still in beta so caveat emptor etc.
  2. It's not as popular
  3. Currently a bit harder to onboard
@danie10@mastodon.social avatar

@Linux_in_a_Bit yes it may be early days still. Thing is we're looking at a radio only solution, so we are still bound by the 1% or so duty cycle. We need it to be Internet free so what we have in the LoRa restrictions, is what we're working with.

Linux_in_a_Bit, (edited )
@Linux_in_a_Bit@linuxrocks.online avatar

I believe I mentioned that Reticulum handles LoRa's limitations better as well: https://linuxrocks.online/
(just in case it got lost bc Mastodon issues)

@Linux_in_a_Bit@linuxrocks.online avatar

Some more things I remembered:
Reticulum's creater compares it to Meshtastic here: https://github.com/markqvist/Reticulum/discussions/77#discussioncomment-3109349

Getting started: https://reticulum.network/start.html

RNode tutorials: https://unsigned.io/website/guides.html
Installation tutorial (your board is probably already compatible):

@danie10@mastodon.social avatar

@Linux_in_a_Bit I see the benefits of more functions to use, but I still cannot understand how video or file transfer can legally work in the EU where the permitted duty cycle is only 1% on 868 MHz? That is an allowable time of 36 secs every hour. It can surely only be used for basic short text?

Linux_in_a_Bit, (edited )
@Linux_in_a_Bit@linuxrocks.online avatar

You're probably not gonna do file transfer over LoRa because it would take wayyy longer than dialup internet.
You can, but that doesn't mean you would want to...
I'm talking things like NomadNet pages or similar mostly.
Those still take a hot minute, but it's at least usable.
Of course you can use other higher bandwidth physical layers to achieve faster speeds.
Reticulum is designed to be highly versatile in this reguard as well.

Linux_in_a_Bit, (edited )
@Linux_in_a_Bit@linuxrocks.online avatar

Reticulum is dealing with the same bandwidth limits as Meshtastic, but Reticulum can make much more of that bandwidth actually usable, especially with larger networks, because of how it routes traffic (for reference Meshtastic uses flood routing): https://github.com/markqvist/Reticulum/discussions/422#discussioncomment-8163253
The approach is further explained in the "Understanding Reticulum" section of the docs which I linked earlier.

@michaelgraaf@cheeseburger.social avatar

@danie10 Let's get some Geiger counters showing on the map!

@danie10@mastodon.social avatar

@michaelgraaf yes quite possible - Meshtastic is good at also transmitting telemetry data

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