4af8 BBS gateway - Telecomix Crypto Munitions Bureau

BBS gateway

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[edit] Overview

With the few connectivity option avaible to Egyptian people right now, we need to help them accessing vital services in a fast and efficient manner rather than providing IP access only.

The point of this project is to provide any tool to send lightweighted messages back and forth to as many people as possible with the fewer possible requirements on the user side.

[edit] Known issues

The SIP Software Modem project aims at providing low-bandwidth data communication to Egyptian users in a more efficient and cost effective way (better than international dial-up services)

Available bandwidth will be somewhere between 1200bps and 14400bps, half duplex, which isn't enough for modern web usage.

The goal is to provide emergency communication services. That could be USENET, twitter gateways or any message exchange protocol.

[edit] Approaches

[edit] IP based services

Most universal, but will require more bandwidth than optimized protocols. We would suppose than users have the proper client software installed on their comuters, like an IRC and USENET client.

On top of any IP connection, we could also provide telenet / ssh shells.

[edit] Optimal bandwidth use

What would be the basic needs :

  • Fetch information bulletins
  • Send public information
  • send private (to-be-relayed) messages

Most of this work is yet done via faxing. It could be done with a simple hyperterminal-like software too.

[edit] Stick to FAX

rozie (on irc://irc.telecomix.org/#SIPmodem ) made a very good point : there are many more FAX machines than 56k modems in Egypt. So the better and universal vector for information could still be fax.

Therefore a good solution would be to build a distributed faxing service to :

  • periodically fax information bulletin automatically to thousands of fax numbers in Egypt
  • Fetch incoming faxes to be transcripted in other vectors like twitter or information bulletins

What's to be done :

We have to make faxing campaigns and incoming fax transcriptions more efficient.

[edit] Faxing campaign

Some contributors already maintain a list of reachable fax machines to send information to.

We need as many fax-sending services to disseminate information bulletins automatically.

This requires :

  • mail2fax gateways
  • fax preparation system (authoring of a PDF to be sent to the gateways)
  • editing platform (could be just a wiki page / etherpad to prepare the bulletins and a few operators to author and dispatch)

[edit] Incoming fax

The gateways could forward incoming faxes to a webapp where contributors could pick a fax, reed it and transcript it to twitter / a public pad / a wiki / an information bulletin

[edit] Fax2mail and IP fax providers

With presence in Egypt for local calls :

[edit] Getting involved

Feel free to comment on this page, join the #SIPmodem channel and help us out with whatever you can do !! THANKS !

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