[rohrpost] [Fwd: [wsfii-discuss] Wireless Networking in the Developing World book release]

Sven Wagner cven at c-base.org
Fre Jan 27 14:45:42 CET 2006


-------- Original Message --------
Subject: [wsfii-discuss] Wireless Networking in the Developing World 
book	release
Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2006 01:01:01 -0800
From: Rob Flickenger <rob at nocat.net>
Reply-To: Discuss list on the World Summit on Free Information 
Infrastructure	<wsfii-discuss at lists.okfn.org>
To: wsfii-discuss at lists.okfn.org

Hello, all--

I've spent the past three months working on a new book with a team of folks
from around the world, and it's finally out!  It's called "Wireless
Networking in the Developing World", and it is a free book released under
Creative Commons.

More info is available at: http://wndw.net/

and: http://us.wndw.net/ (US Mirror)




London, England-- Imagine trying to piece together a wireless network with
no manuals, sporadic and slow access to the Internet, inadequate tools, a
shortage of supplies, and in the most inclement weather. The authors of a
recently published book, "Wireless Networking in the Developing World" don't
need to imagine.  They have been doing so for years.

In almost every village, town, or city in the developing world, there are
people who can build just about anything.  With the right know-how, this can
include wireless networks that connect their community to the Internet. The
book addresses what Rob Flickenger, the book's editor and lead author, calls
a chicken-and-egg problem: "While much information about building wireless
networks can be found on-line, that presents a problem for people in areas
with little or no connectivity", said Flickenger from his workshop in
Seattle. The book covers topics from basic radio physics and network design
to equipment and troubleshooting. It is intended to be a comprehensive
resource for technologists in the developing world, providing the critical
information that they need to build networks.  This includes specific
examples, diagrams and calculations, which are intended to help building
wireless networks without requiring access to the Internet.

In the developing world, one book can often be a library, and to a techie
this book may well be a bible. Access to books is difficult where there are
few libraries or book stores, and there is often little money to pay for
them. "Our book will be released under a Creative Commons license, so
everybody can copy and distribute it free of charge. That doesn't mean it is
a 'cheap' book. I think it is a great book," stated Corinna 'Elektra'
Aichele, one of the books co-authors who was recently installing wireless
networks in Bangladesh.

The book has been released under a Creative Commons license, meaning that it
is free to download, print and modify, even for a profit, as long as proper
credit is given and any modifications or copies made are shared under the
same terms. For Flickenger, who has already published several successful
books, publishing a book for free has been an interesting endeavor. He
explains, "the Book Sprint team felt that the need for a freely available
collection of practical information greatly outweighed any short term

For the authors, all of whom spend their time building networks in the
developing world, their pay-back will be having a resource to hand to their
beneficiaries. "I wasn't paid and I don't expect to earn money with it,
though that would be nice," stated Elektra.

The authors, all experts in the field of wireless community networking,
gathered in London for a "Book Sprint" last October. The book sprint was the
brain-child of Tomas Krag, one of the book's authors, and was to be the
kickstart of a 3-month effort culminating in a finished book. The
trans-continental team spent a week in the aging Lime House Town Hall near
the Thames for a week, fleshing out the details of the book while sitting
around a mix of old tables, powering their notebooks over yards of extension
cords and with stacks of power adapters.  Flickenger explains, "the idea was
to get a hand picked, tightly focused team of experts together and
aggressively work on a book project." The team wrote, edited, and have now
released the 250 page manual in only three months. Though he admits it was
difficult to motivate a team who was not being paid, especially over the
holidays, Flickenger's quiet persistence prevailed.

The authors also hope that by releasing the book into the "Creative Commons"
that it can be improved, expanded, corrected and translated. Efforts are
underway to translate the book into other languages and to provide it to
those who need it most, the 5 to 6 billion who don't yet have access to the
Internet today.

The book is available in PDF form and for sale in print at the book's
website: http://wndw.net/

--Ian Howard, co-Author, Limehouse BookSprint Team

For more information:

Web site: http://wndw.net/

* Canada
     Contact: Ian Howard
     Email: ihoward at adaptic.ca
     Phone: +1 647 722 5629 x1

* Denmark
     Contact: Tomas Krag
     Email: t at wire.less.dk
     Phone: +45 27115960

* Germany
     Contact: Corinna 'Elektra' Aichele
     Email: onelektra at gmx.net
     Phone: +49-30-220 192 77

     Contact: Sebastian Buettrich
     Email: sebastian at wire.less.dk
     Phone: +45 27 11 93 91

* United States
     Contact: Rob Flickenger
     Email: rob at nocat.net
     Phone: +1 206 202-3230

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