An occupy.here workshop for the IDEAS CITY festival
UPDATE: an earlier revision of this page listed the wrong date (Sunday May 5th). The workshop is happening on Friday May 3rd, although I'm looking into the possibility of offering a Sunday follow-up session.
Friday May 3rd, 11am–1pm
The Old School, room 1.5
233 Mott Street, New York, NY 10012
Occupy.here is an invisible Temporary Autonomous Zone built on internet technologies like WiFi and HTML. The project seeks to build a network of independent WiFi routers, each hosting local services that don’t require an internet connection. Each WiFi network, called OCCUPY.HERE, allows those within physical proximity to connect to custom-built social software. Once you’re connected, any URL you type into your mobile browser redirects you to occupy.here. This website offers a simple forum where you can anonymously post messages, upload files, and respond to what others have posted.
The WiFi hardware can be battery-powered and stores all its data on a USB thumb drive. Each router has no upstream bandwidth and there is no mesh protocol connecting them. The project is open source and designed to be easily replicated by DIY free-speech enthusiasts using off-the-shelf hardware. Each node of the network is a LAN island in an archipelago of affiliated websites. When somebody connects to Occupy.here, she or he can download a complete backup of everything stored on that WiFi router. Upon connecting to subsequent WiFi nodes, that backup is sync’d and propagated slowly throughout the larger Occupy.here network.
This workshop, for beginners and the technically savvy alike, explores the possibilities of virtual public spaces for strangers to anonymously confront each other’s views and politics, much in the style of Zuccotti Park. We’ll discuss the theory and technology of local networks, and explore what potential uses they might have in practice. Come with a laptop and ideas for how Occupy.here might help your community.
The Occupy.here workshop will begin promptly at 11:00 a.m. in room 1.5 of the Old School
When & Where
IDEAS CITY explores the future of cities around the globe with the belief that arts and culture are essential to the vitality of urban centers, making them better places to live, work, and play. Founded by the New Museum in 2011, IDEAS CITY is a major collaborative initiative between hundreds of arts, education, and community organizations. This year’s theme is Untapped Capital, with participants focused on resources that are under-recognized or underutilized in our cities.