Social networking may have a reputation for pointless trivia, however it is rapidly emerging as the most pressing threat to authoritarian dictatorships. The same social networks we use to plan a night out are being used to overthrow unpopular governments. Unfortunately the means to access the Internet is centrally managed corporations – it’s easy for an embattled government to simply disconnect an entire city or country from the Internet. As we have seen in Egypt… the Internet as we know it can be shut down at the whim of government.
Paul Gardner Stephen is a fellow of Flinders University in Southern Australia. He is the founder of the Serval project, an open-source project which aims to turn every-day mobile phones into nodes of an indestructible mesh network.
And the Serval Project is something i happen to be, very proudly, co-founder of.
Mesh Networks in Authoritarian Regimes, with Dr. Paul Gardner-Stephen, founder of the Serval Project by salimfadhley
- Android Software Connects Calls Without Mobile Carriers (informationweek.com)
- Researchers enable mesh WiFi networking for Android smartphones (arstechnica.com)
- Serval Project: Network-Free Communication, Or A Temporary Self-Organizing Self-Powered Network, For Android (androidpolice.com)
- Boffins squeeze a mesh onto Android handsets (go.theregister.com)