Rhizomatica's goal is to increase access to mobile telecommunications to people without (affordable) coverage. This is done by helping people build and manage their own networks. Currently 16 villages around Oaxaca that have no regular GSM coverage are operating their own GSM network.
Those installations are using the Osmocom Open Source software stack including OsmoBTS and OpenBSC's OsmoNITB, and Rhizomatica has been obtaining professional development and support services from sysmocom.
The recent hackathon by Rhizomatica brought together many different parties involved in community cellular networks from around Oaxaca as well as Nicaragua and Brazil. For this occasion sysmocom was asked to attend in order to hold a workshop on OpenBSC as well as help with problems setting up networks throughout the hackathon. The results were demo sites being successfully set up as well as discussions on future improvements.
During the hackathon, one of the deployments in a village was visited, providing opportunity not only to have a look at the installation, but also to talk to the municipal government operating the network.
Seeing the software we constantly improve being used to bring remote communities closer together was very uplifting.
The sysmocom team hopes for many more such deployments, where Open Source Mobile Communications software is used to make a real difference in peoples' lives by providing affordable telecommunications services.
For more information about Rhizomatica, see http://rhizomatica.org/
For more information about sysmocom, see http://sysmocom.de/