Concept for a portable computer device: the Triple Pi


in Geek stuff, Internet matters, Toronto

I have been curious about picking up a Raspberry Pi one board computer.

They are the standard hardware for nodes on the Toronto Mesh network, so with a suitable USB radio transceiver I could use it in small areas as a bridge to their network via the IPv6 Hyperboria network.

I could also use it to run Linux-based software-defined radio (SDR) software in combination with my USB radio receiver dongle. I could set up software to locate digital signals and then decode those which are not encrypted, or use it as a portable radio scanning rig.

At the same time, there seems to be awesome game emulation software which can be run on a Pi. With two USB-interface SNES-style controllers, I am told it has enough processing power to make a great SNES emulator.

I don’t have a screen with an HDMI input, so it might be worth getting a small portable display to use with the system. One neat idea would be to make the whole thing capable of running on its own batteries.

To start with, I will try to get a working setup that runs with the Pi and the display plugged into the wall. If it seems useful enough to be made portable, I’ll start thinking of battery hardware and case and transportation options for the whole system.

The hardware to get started will be about $100 plus the cost of the display. ToMesh has an installation party later this week where they will install the operating system and software stack necessary to use your Pi as a node.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

. December 6, 2017 at 4:05 am
. December 6, 2017 at 4:07 am
. December 6, 2017 at 4:07 am
. December 6, 2017 at 4:08 am
. December 14, 2017 at 9:26 pm
Milan December 17, 2017 at 2:40 pm

I now have all the necessary hardware.

I got the CanaKit Raspberry Pi 3, which includes an HDMI cable, power cable, case, micro SD card, heatsinks, etc.

I also got two Buffalo iBuffalo Classic USB Gamepads (BSGP815GY). Having tested them on some emulated games at the Toad Lane Christmas potluck, they seem to be responsive and of good quality.

I already had the NooElec NESDR Mini 2 SDR & DVB-T USB Stick (RTL2832 + R820T2) with Antenna and Remote Control as an SDR-receiver dongle. I ordered the TP-Link TL-WN722N Wireless N150 High Gain USB Adapter transceiver so I can use the Pi as a node for the Toronto Mesh Net.

I have the Retropie OS set up with 700+ each of SNES and Sega Genesis games, as well as about a dozen Playstation games. I accidentally deleted my Final Fantasy VII save games a couple of hours in by hitting some weird key combination on the controller, but the system seems to work very well generally for console emulation.

Now I am installing the necessary software for the mesh net. Hopefully I will be able to figure it out on my own and not need to go to their next install party.

. January 16, 2018 at 11:50 pm

A Meshnet Will Help This Inuit Town Monitor the Effects of Climate Change

An app called eNuk is being configured to run on the network and help residents in northern Canada swap information about their changing environment.

Enter RightMesh, billed as a mobile mesh networking platform that uses blockchain technology, a decentralized ledger that chronologically tracks information. RightMesh provides an on-platform token system—based on the Ethereum blockchain—that allows users with an internet connection to sell their bandwidth to mesh users who don’t, without a centralized authority mediating the trade. The company is handling the technical side of the project, while Rigolet residents—two of whom are employed as research associates—provide extensive feedback.

Bandwidth on a mesh network could be distributed as a charity, so why build a marketplace for data? RightMesh argues that the token system incentivizes users to share their internet access with the mesh, which is necessary for users hoping to access anything on the internet outside of the local mesh—say, Facebook or YouTube. Without that incentive, RightMesh argues, the mesh network won’t last very long.

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