[hackerspaces] hackers + Haiti

Christopher Pilkington cjp at 0x1.net
Sun Jan 17 21:44:22 CET 2010

I'm a radio geek that has operated in foreign, portable and disaster ops
before. Although never quite in a situation like Haiti.

The first problem will likely be authority. Since Haiti's telecommunications
authority likely has better things to do right now, they will be unavailable
to authorize you to operate within the country. The best bet would be to
attempt contact with a ham on the ground there and see if he/she can work
with your equipment. Or you can just chance it and run illegal or see if
someone at the PTT office will authorize you on the spot, if such an office
still exists.

As far as email over HF (high frequency, the uninitiated call it shortwave),
there are two routes. One is called Winlink, which utilizes pactor3 modems,
which are proprietary. However this system has many gateways, so many in
fact that it gets a bad rep from rich hams on boats sending emails to make
stock trades.

The other software package is PSK Mail. It has few gateways, but it might be
reasonable to work with hams in the south to get gateways up there so you
can get mail through.

Of course there is the manual method of setting up a schedule (hams call
this a sked) with a ham in the states/Mexico to relay your traffic. This
could be done using vanilla PSK31 or using an ARQ variety (flarq is one of
these packages).

It should be noted that HF digital is slow. Bandwidth is very limited.
Pskmail uses PSK250 as it's modulation, so we're talking 250 bauds. Great
for critical messages in and out of the front lines, not good for mass

What is the comms need? Logistical? Health and welfare?

I can follow up with URLs if google doesn't suffice, I'm on a mobile atm.

Chris N2MCS

On Jan 17, 2010, at 14:57, Far McKon <farmckon at gmail.com> wrote:

 I do not know of a hackerspace centric group, but I do  I know of a crew
from Philadelphia going down that need some comm. help, and medical folks.
I can connect anyone who is interested in getting involved that has those

I've been trying to find info on Ham operation in emergency situations, and
related resources (email by radio, etc), and am willing to hear
suggestions/links/info if folks have them.

hack on,
- Far McKon

On Sun, Jan 17, 2010 at 2:27 PM, Rogelio <scubacuda at gmail.com> wrote:

> My apologies if this has already been discussed ad nauseum, but does
> anyone know of any separate "hacker space"-ish sub groups that are
> forming to respond to the earthquake in Haiti?
> _______________________________________________
> Discuss mailing list
> Discuss at lists.hackerspaces.org
> http://lists.hackerspaces.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss

http://www.Hive76.org  "Making things awesome,  making awesome things!"
http://www.FarMcKon.net "Creatively Maladjusted"

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