Thomas Krag and Sebastian Buettrich: Pioneers of Wireless Mesh Networking in the Developing World
Wireless mesh networking is a technology that allows devices to communicate with each other without relying on a central infrastructure. It can provide low-cost, reliable and scalable connectivity for communities that lack access to traditional wired or cellular networks. Wireless mesh networking has been used for various applications, such as disaster relief, rural development, environmental monitoring and social empowerment.
Two of the pioneers of wireless mesh networking in the developing world are Thomas Krag and Sebastian Buettrich, who co-founded wire.less.dk, a non-profit organization based in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 2002. Wire.less.dk specializes in community wireless networking solutions, and has a special focus on low-cost wireless networks for the developing world. Wire.less.dk has been involved in several projects and initiatives to promote and implement wireless mesh networking in different regions, such as Africa, Asia and Latin America.
Some of the projects and initiatives that wire.less.dk has participated in include:
The Wireless Roadshow: A series of workshops, trainings and discussions that offer assistance in the design, planning and deployment of wireless networks in developing countries. The Wireless Roadshow is funded by the Open Society Institute, and targets non-profit organizations (NGOs) and civil society initiatives with a well-defined need for connectivity. The Wireless Roadshow team consists of 2-3 wireless experts from community wireless groups around the world, who visit each country/project for up to 3 weeks. The goal is to create and stimulate enough skills and ideas to let the local partner organizations continue to extend and maintain the network.
Wireless Networking in the Developing World (WNDW): A book that provides a comprehensive guide to designing, implementing and maintaining low-cost wireless networks in remote areas. The book covers topics such as radio physics, network architecture, hardware selection, power sources, security and troubleshooting. The book is available for free online in several languages, and has been widely used as a reference and teaching material by practitioners and educators around the world.
Network Startup Resource Center (NSRC): A non-profit organization that provides technical assistance to organizations setting up or improving Internet access in developing regions. NSRC works closely with wire.less.dk to help develop campus networks for research and education, with emphasis on global integration and sustainability. NSRC also supports wire.less.dk's efforts to teach and implement wireless networks, network monitoring and management, free and open software (mostly GNU/Linux based) and solar power for IT.
Thomas Krag and Sebastian Buettrich have also contributed to the development of wireless mesh networking through their research, publications, presentations and collaborations with other experts and organizations in the field. They have both received recognition and awards for their work, such as the Ashoka Fellowship for social entrepreneurs.
Thomas Krag and Sebastian Buettrich are examples of how wireless mesh networking can be used as a tool for social change and development. By sharing their knowledge, skills and experience with others, they have helped create more connected, empowered and resilient communities around the world. ec8f644aee