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Messaging App Jott Is Blowing Up Among Junior High And High Schoolers | TechCrunch
"As Facebook and YikYak try to grow a younger audience, a startup that taps into one of the key attribute of teen users – no money for data plans – is blowing up.

Jott, a messaging app that works without a data plan or WiFi connection, has caught on among junior high and high school students, according to co-founder Jared Allgood. He says the app more than doubled to half a million active users in March, up from 150,000 active users previous.

Allgood told TechCrunch that the app continues to gain momentum, adding 15,000 to 20,000 users a day. That’s consistent with numbers from App Annie. The app started ranking steadily in the top 75 on iOS for social networking in the U.S. in mid-April.

The reason? Teens who don’t have a data plan that will allow them to text are using their iPods and iPads to message each other on a closed network within a 100-foot area within school limits.

About 88 percent of 13-17-year-olds have a cell or smartphone, according to the latest numbers from Pew Research. However, not all of them get a data plan or a way to access the Internet during school hours, leaving many of them without a way to non-stop text each other throughout the day.

Text messages usually travel by way of your phone to the nearest cell tower. Then they get routed to other cell towers to reach the person you are texting. However, Jott can send messages from one device to another without any cell service as long as those texting are within close enough proximity to each other.

It does this by using something called a mesh network that operates on Bluetooth low energy or using a router that can reach within 100 feet of each user. It’s the same way FireChat, a group messaging app, does this, but Jott can also message individuals within your network.

And that ability to easily message peers directly within a network is the key. While apps such as Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram rank at the top for social networks among teens, texting reigns supreme. According to Niche data, about 87 percent of teens text daily, compared to 61 percent of those who say they use Facebook, the next most popular choice.

It’s tough to know why texting is the preferred method. What is out there is mostly anecdotal. Perhaps texting is simply the easiest form of direct messaging to one’s friends? Whatever the reason. They do a lot of it. More than adults. Girls send, on average, about 3,952 text messages a month, and boys send closer to 2,815 text messages a month, according to the Pew study.

What we do know is that teens who own a smartphone text a lot more than those who don’t. “Fully 2 in 5 heavy texters (41%) and a third (33%) of medium texters own a smartphone, compared with just under 1 in 5 (19%) of lighter texters,” a Pew study from 2012 found.

This may be why Jott has caught on so fast, particularly among junior high schoolers who are less likely to have a smartphone than older teens. Jott provides a way for those without a smartphone or the data plan needed to text to still message with their friends."
jott  messaging  internet  dataplans  2015  teens  youth  middleschool  highschool  mesh  meshnetworks  communication  firechat 
june 2015 by robertogreco
IFTF: Artifact from the Future: Energy Wants To Be Free
"The UN has teamed up with the global Pirate Party, a political party with a platform of open intellectual property (IP), to provide new disaster relief kits that use open-source components to build ad hoc infrastructures for everything from power to water to Internet access. At the core of the relief kit is the now famous Tesla Box—a 10-foot shipping container that can power a neighborhood by harnessing the sub-atomic Casimir Effect. What else will you find in the open-source kit? Wireless lightbulbs, mobile device chargers, rechargeable desalination straws, and an Internet-in-a-suitcase."
pirateparty  iftf  speculativefiction  infrastructure  mesh  meshnetworks  enelctricity  robots  drones  construction  resilience  2013  solarpunk 
october 2014 by robertogreco
Open Garden
"Fixing the mobile Internet. Together.

More than 5 million people use Open Garden today. By joining Open Garden, you are joining forces to make the Internet better, faster and more reliable – for everyone, including yourself. Open Garden allows all devices (including smart phones, tablets, laptops and “wearables”) to work together and find the best connections at any time. The more people use it, the better it gets."
opensource  mesh  networking  internet  wifi  meshnetworks  meshnetworking  opengarden  connectivity 
september 2014 by robertogreco
Open Garden | /firechat
[See also: "FireChat – the messaging app that’s powering the Hong Kong protests"
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/sep/29/firechat-messaging-app-powering-hong-kong-protests

"#BBCtrending: Hong Kong's 'off-grid' protesters"
http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-trending-29411159

"Faced with network surveillance, Hong Kong student demonstrators go P2P"
http://boingboing.net/2014/09/29/faced-with-network-surveillanc.html ]

[Description here is from the iTunes page: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/firechat/id719829352 ]

"FireChat introduces a new way to chat: "off-the-grid".
Now you can chat with people around you – even if there is no Internet connection or mobile phone coverage.

Whether you’re on the beach or in the subway, at a big game or a trade show, camping in the wild or at a concert, or even travelling abroad, simply fire up the app with a friend or two and find out who else is there.



FireChat enables a new type of communication: “firechats”. These live and anonymous discussion groups can gather as many as 10,000 people simultaneously.

And you can also create your own firechats about anything that interests you - whether it's the NY Yankees, Game of Thrones, League of Legends or Italian food.

Get FireChat and start bringing people together.

Wait, how does this app work without an Internet connection or any type of mobile coverage? The magic comes from one of Apple’s iOS 7 most advanced technologies: the Multipeer Connectivity Framework, which FireChat is built upon.



We’re Open Garden. Welcome to a new era of open communications.


Please meet us on Twitter @OpenGarden and Facebook www.facebook.com/OpenGarden.

Features:

• Instantly chat with anyone around you on iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch
• Works even without any Internet connection or cellular phone coverage
• Choose your own unique username and avatar
• Create your own ‘firechats’ for live discussions with up to tens of thousands of simultaneous users
• See what people are talking about in your country in the ‘Everyone’ mode
• Off-the-grid communications work with devices up to 200 feet of your location
• Multi-hop capabilities extend the range of off-the-grid communications
• No significant impact on battery consumption,

• FireChat is designed for iOS 7.

Please note that FireChat is not meant for secure or private communications. Other people nearby may see your messages. It's just like if you were playing music at home, people across the street might hear it too."

[See also: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.opengarden.firechat&hl=en ]
firechat  messaging  android  ios  communication  decentralization  mesh  meshnetworking  bluetooth  meshnetworks  networks  organization  iphone  opengarden  p2p 
september 2014 by robertogreco
The Promise of a New Internet - Adrienne LaFrance - The Atlantic
"What if there were a technical solution instead of a regulatory one? What if the core architecture of how people connect could make an end run on the centralization of services that has come to define the modern net?

It's a question that reflects some of the Internet's deepest cultural values, and the idea that this network—this place where you are right now—should distribute power to people. In the post-NSA, post-Internet-access-oligopoly world, more and more people are thinking this way, and many of them are actually doing something about it.

Among them, there is a technology that's become a kind of shorthand code for a whole set of beliefs about the future of the Internet: "mesh networking." These words have become a way to say that you believe in a different, freer Internet. "



"Think of it this way: With a mesh network, each device is like a mini cell phone tower. So instead of having multiple devices rely on a single, centralized hub; multiple devices rely on one another. And with information ricocheting across the network more unpredictably between those devices, the network as a whole is harder to take out."



"Advocates for mesh networking maintain it's only a matter of time before mesh infrastructure expands beyond niche communities. "They are inevitable, unstoppable, unbreakable," Shalunov told me. "We all have the power to change the future of the Internet. It is happening now."

Mesh networks also reflect the idea that maybe the next big Internet revolution won't be one thing. The infrastructure of a mesh network is, in a sense, a physical manifestation of the fragmented nature of the Internet as we know it. 

"This idea of this great unifying internet is a little bit of an early miss because I think it's going to continue to fragment in many, many ways," said the Institute for the Future's Liebhold. "The actual governance of the Internet is in wild turmoil right now. There's turmoil over who should govern then Internet and how—the chaotic management of this thing. So, meanwhile, let's pass messages around the classroom without the teacher getting them.""
mesh  meshnetworks  meshnetworking  decentralization  internet  adriennerlafrance  2014  ethics  privacy  security  networks 
june 2014 by robertogreco
How to Keep the NSA Out of Your Computer | Mother Jones
[See also the follow-up Q&A on Reddit: http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/1l9oud/iama_journalist_with_mother_jones_magazine_who/ ]

"Sick of government spying, corporate monitoring, and overpriced ISPs? There's a cure for that."



"JOSEPH BONICIOLI mostly uses the same internet you and I do. He pays a service provider a monthly fee to get him online. But to talk to his friends and neighbors in Athens, Greece, he's also got something much weirder and more interesting: a private, parallel internet.

He and his fellow Athenians built it. They did so by linking up a set of rooftop wifi antennas to create a "mesh," a sort of bucket brigade that can pass along data and signals. It's actually faster than the Net we pay for: Data travels through the mesh at no less than 14 megabits a second, and up to 150 Mbs a second, about 30 times faster than the commercial pipeline I get at home. Bonicioli and the others can send messages, video chat, and trade huge files without ever appearing on the regular internet. And it's a pretty big group of people: Their Athens Wireless Metropolitan Network has more than 1,000 members, from Athens proper to nearby islands. Anyone can join for free by installing some equipment. "It's like a whole other web," Bonicioli told me recently. "It's our network, but it's also a playground."

Indeed, the mesh has become a major social hub. There are blogs, discussion forums, a Craigslist knockoff; they've held movie nights where one member streams a flick and hundreds tune in to watch. There's so much local culture that they even programmed their own mini-Google to help meshers find stuff. "It changes attitudes," Bonicioli says. "People start sharing a lot. They start getting to know someone next door—they find the same interests; they find someone to go out and talk with." People have fallen in love after meeting on the mesh.

The Athenians aren't alone. Scores of communities worldwide have been building these roll-your-own networks—often because a mesh can also be used as a cheap way to access the regular internet. But along the way people are discovering an intriguing upside: Their new digital spaces are autonomous and relatively safe from outside meddling. In an era when governments and corporations are increasingly tracking our online movements, the user-controlled networks are emerging as an almost subversive concept. "When you run your own network," Bonicioli explains, "nobody can shut it down."

THE INTERNET may seem amorphous, but it's at heart pretty physical. Its backbone is a huge array of fiber-optic, telephone, and TV cables that carry data from country to country. To gain access, you need someone to connect your house to that backbone. This is what's known as the "last mile" problem, and it's usually solved by large internet service providers such as AT&T and Comcast. They buy access to the backbone and charge you for delivering the signal via telephone wires or cable lines. Most developed nations have plenty of ISPs, but in poor countries and rural areas, the last-mile problem still looms large. If providers don't think there's enough profit in household service, they either don't offer any or do it only at exorbitant rates.

Meshes evolved to tackle this problem. Consider the Spanish network Guifi, which took root in the early aughts as people got sick of waiting for their sclerotic telcos to wire the countryside. "In some places you can wait for 50 years and die and you're still waiting," jokes Guifi member Ramon Roca. The bandwidth-starved Spaniards attached long-range antennas to their wifi cards and pointed them at public hot spots like libraries. Some contributed new backbone connections by shelling out, individually or in groups, for expensive DSL links, while others dipped into the network for free. (Guifi is a complex stew of charity, free-riding, and cost-sharing.) To join the bucket brigade, all you had to do was add some hardware that allowed your computer's wifi hub to pass along the signal to anyone in your vicinity. Gradually, one hub at a time, Guifi grew into the world's largest mesh, with more than 21,000 members."

[For further exploration:
http://beforeitsnews.com/eu/2013/01/build-a-parallel-internet-avoid-control-2503606.html
http://igniteshow.com/videos/creating-grassroots-wi-fi-mesh-network-downtown-raleigh
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wireless_community_network
https://www.wepay.com/donations/1129617243
http://www.dawn.com/news/1077527/anonymous-the-parallel-internet ]
internet  mesh  networks  privacy  2013  nsa  clivethompson  meshnetworks 
february 2014 by robertogreco
You Are the Network
"Seamless connectivity allows people to connect any supported device to the mesh and thus to the Internet with no effort or configuration. Install, done. No buttons, no pairing, no manual discoverability. Open Garden can use different physical ways to connect in general; today\'s version concentrates on Bluetooth. Bluetooth normally requires to manually put one of the devices into discoverable state, which only lasts a few minutes. We eliminated the need for this, saving battery, improving privacy, and, most importantly, allowing devices to connect with no user intervention. Devices learn about each other in a variety of ways instead of Bluetooth discovery, including through a cloud service and using local chatter.

An immediate future direction for us is multi-path access. Normally today, you access the Internet using only one path. For example, when your phone gets on Wi-Fi, it no longer uses its 4G connection; if you are in an area with multiple Wi-Fi hotspots, you only use one…"
osx  mac  windows  p2p  mobile  android  wireless  wifi  sharing  mesh  meshnetworks 
november 2012 by robertogreco
Mesh - Scratch Wiki
"Mesh is a method of having multiple Scratch projects interact, even if they are on different computers. Mesh allows projects to share variables and broadcasts, opening up a surprisingly large field of new project opportunities since technically sharing these two features is actually all that is needed to write most interacting programs."

"The early beta version of Scratch 1.4 had Mesh enabled. This version was shared at the first formal Scratch Day. Only a few Scratchers were able to get this version. The public beta from October had it enabled as well. Mesh could be enabled by shift-clicking on the Share button."
multiplayer  srg  edg  mesh  scratch 
september 2012 by robertogreco
The FNF – Free Information, Free Culture, Free Society | The Free Network Foundation
"Who We Are

We are an organization committed to the tenets of free information, free culture, and free society.
We hold that advances in information technology provide humanity with the ability to effectively face global challenges.
We contend that our very ability to mobilize, organize, and bring about change depends on our ability to communicate.
We see that our ability to communicate is purchased from a handful of powerful entities.
We know that we cannot depend on these entities to support movement away from a status quo from which they are the beneficiaries.
We believe that access to a free network is a human right, and a necessary tool for environmental and social justice.

What We’re Doing

We envision communications infrastructure that is owned and operated cooperatively, by the whole of humanity, rather than by corporations and states.
We are using the power of peer-to-peer technologies to create a global network which is resistant to censorship and breakdown.
We promote free
innovation  cooperation  communications  socialjustice  humanrights  humanity  democracy  freesociety  freeculture  culure  society  information  opensource  open  free  networks  networking  mesh  freedom  network  pablovaronaborges  tyronegreenfield  charleswyble  isaacwilder 
may 2012 by robertogreco
The future is podular « Dachis Group Collaboratory
"Pods don’t answer every business problem. Like any other strategic decision, choice to go podular involves inherent risks & tradeoffs. A podular system is certainly not the most efficient or consistent way to conduct business. There is more redundancy in this kind of system, which usually means greater cost. When units are autonomous, activity will also be more variable, which means it will be less consistent.

The bet you are making with a podular strategy is that the increase in value to customers, paired w/ increased resiliency in your operations, will more than offset the increases in costs. It’s a fundamental tradeoff & thus a design decision: the more flexible and adaptive you are, the less consistent your behavior will be. The benefit, though, is that you unleash people to bring more of their intelligence, passion, creative energy & expertise to their work. If you’re in an industry where these things matter (& who isn’t), then you should take a look at podular design."
management  socialbusiness  hierarchy  mesh  meshnetworks  autonomy  redundancy  motivation  flexibility  tcsnmy  administration  leadership  organization  organizations  passion  creativity  nodes  networks  networkedlearning  networkculture  decisionmaking  connectivism  connections  efficiency  chains  empowerment  democracy  business  dachisgroup  podular  2011 
may 2011 by robertogreco
Humans Are The Routers
"Free communications is an essential human right. The 21st Century will be defined by the idea that no Government, no power shall ever block or filter the right of all men and women to communicate together again. It is my dream that within my lifetime that dictatorship shall be banished from this planet and unfiltered and true democracy shall flourish everywhere. It is time that our Faustian bargains with brutal dictators for short-term concerns end and a new covenant directly made with citizens everywhere seeking freedom will take its place. OpenMesh is a first step to help create a world where such a covenant can take hold in a world where brave people armed with new electronic tools can never be blocked or silenced ever again."
technology  internet  politics  social  networking  mesh  openmesh  connectivity  humanrights  access  government  communication  web  online  networks  openmeshproject  routers  wireless  wifi 
february 2011 by robertogreco
A Networked Learning Project: The Connected Day
[Broken link, alternative refs here:
https://steelemaley.io/2014/03/06/a-networked-learning-ecology/
http://www.networkedresearch.net/index.php/Networked_Learning_Ecology_Design
http://steelemaley.io/2015/10/25/the-rise-of-micro-schools/ ]

"Piper is a 15 year old who lives in Midcoast Maine, US. A year ago, Piper heard about a new way to learn, and decided to take part in a new learning experience called the Maine Networked Learning Project. Known as “the Mesh” to participants, this learning ecology offered Piper the chance to apply her passion for learning in highly experiential and collaborative ways with groups of young people of varied ages, adult and youth mentors with knowledge territory specialties and organizations focused on ensuring sustainable and resilient societies, economies, and the environment. This is a snapshot of her day…"
connectivism  cck11  thomassteele-maley  maine  mlearning  mobilelearning  mobile  networks  netoworking  lcproject  bighere  longhere  bignow  elearning  self-organizedlearning  self-organizedlearningenvironment  self-organization  sugatamitra  mesh  meshnetworks  twitter  googlereader  projectbasedlearning  realworld  farming  sustainability  ecology  projects  local  glocalism  experientiallearning  meetups  education  speculativefiction  designfiction  pbl  agriculture 
february 2011 by robertogreco
Architecture astronauts take over - Joel on Software
"these smart kids, cream of our universities, are working on hopeless & useless architecture astronomy because these companies are like cancers, driven to grow at all cost, even though they can't think of a single useful thing to build for us"
microsoft  joelonsoftware  programming  business  google  jobs  mesh  windows  development  software 
may 2008 by robertogreco
TED | Talks | Robin Chase: Getting cars off the road and data into the skies (video)
"rose to fame founding Zipcar,...one of her smaller ideas...contemplating road-pricing schemes to shake up driving habits, no-fee mesh network as sprawling as Interstate system....how? finds answer in few short lines from The Graduate...not plastic"
transportation  politics  travel  energy  wireless  zipcar  carsharing  cars  roadpricing  internet  mesh  networks  opensource  technology  sharing  environment  buses 
january 2008 by robertogreco
YouTube - Mob Rules (part 1 of 5)
"Closing keynote of WebDirections South 2007 - an exploration of the future of mobile communications, now that half of humanity has a mobile phone."
markpesce  business  medicine  censorship  communication  internet  mob  mobs  gamechanging  cooperative  community  politics  copyright  distributed  economics  expression  freedom  free  future  revolution  innovation  mesh  mobile  networking  networks  social  wireless  wifi  sms  technology  usability  trends  power  poor  phones  strategy  society  web  online  health  services  credentials  wellness  knowledge  change  reform  chaos  hierarchy  meritocracy  learning 
november 2007 by robertogreco
hyperpeople » Blog Archive » Mob Rules (The Law of Fives)
"ONE: The mob is everywhere. TWO: The mob is faster, smarter and stronger than you are. THREE: Advertising is a form of censorship. FOUR: The mob does not need a business model. FIVE: Make networks happen."
markpesce  business  medicine  censorship  communication  internet  mob  mobs  gamechanging  cooperative  community  politics  copyright  distributed  economics  expression  freedom  free  future  revolution  innovation  mesh  mobile  networking  networks  social  wireless  wifi  sms  technology  usability  trends  power  poor  phones  strategy  society  web  online  health  services  credentials  wellness  knowledge  change  reform  chaos  hierarchy  meritocracy  learning 
november 2007 by robertogreco
Meraki Wireless Network | Affordable Internet Solution | Free WiFi
"Meraki’s mission is to bring affordable Internet access to the next billion people. Meraki’s new approach to wireless networking empowers individuals and groups to bring access to local communities, anywhere in the world."
access  wireless  wifi  mit  mobile  networking  p2p  gamechanging  future  free  collaboration  community  internet  technology  broadband  hardware  mesh 
november 2007 by robertogreco
Vodafone Receiver » #19 | Generation Mesh
"For Generation Mesh, Starbucks – as well as independent cafés, parks and other public spaces where it is possible to access the wireless internet – is a vital site for social interaction, professional support, collaboration and, even, community."
wireless  coworking  telecommuting  social  computers  game  public  internet  online  wifi  web  interaction  relationships  society  work  collaboration  community  networks  networking  socialnetworks  socialnetworking  mobile  mobility  neo-nomads  nomads  urban  urbanism  culture  economics  freelance  gamechanging  network  mesh  starbucks 
october 2007 by robertogreco

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