It’s an unfortunate fact that not everyone in the world can afford internet service, particularly when we’re dependent on ISP’s to provide that internet service (and there are often only a few companies available).
This is one of the reasons that “wireless mesh networks” are starting to become more popular. Mesh networks consist of radio nodes arranged in a “mesh” topology – they can cover anything from a very small locality, to a whole city, to even a whole country (though I don’t know of any networks of that size yet).
I know that people often think that there are “levels” of the deep web. There aren’t, but actually, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of different networks. Mesh networks would be included among these. A few that I know of are: Netsukuku (the dragon logo there), CCNx, cjdns, Freifunk, Funkfeuer, Coova, and Serval. Metaphorically, you could think of these as the next “level” of the web, because you can’t access them without the right hardware and software.
How is that done, you ask? To connect to most of these networks, you need a router with a radio antenna (thus why they’re called radio nodes), as well as whatever software corresponds to each network. Thus far, I’ve been able to connect to a few of them with my cell phone (CCNx and Serval), and one or two on my laptop (cjdns and Netsukuku), but haven’t really been able to do anything practical yet.
This may be because I haven’t joined any active communities in the “mesh” world yet. I know that there are a number of existing ones out there, and I’ve recently gotten re-interested in that kind of thing, so maybe what I need to do is research this technology and get back into it.
Also, this is a very basic explanation of mesh networks, and to really understand them, you’ll have to visit each site and read the technical documentation.
I’m not promising that you’ll find anything dark and secretive on these networks – I highly doubt that. However, if you’re interested in the technology and how they achieve anonymity, there is lots of documentation, and plenty of links, that might help you.
In fact, technically, if you learned how to create your own mesh network, you could, theoretically, create your own darknet. How cool would that be?
Although I’m certain it couldn’t be done overnight. If I gain more experience with these, I think they will definitely be good subjects for future posts – and perhaps something that you readers can explore too.
If you’re interested in exploring these more, here are links to a few of the networks’ homepages and repositories:
Have fun! Let me know if you discover anything new!