A little bit of ingenuity goes a long way.

With Swedish telephone numbers and a tree-bound base station, a remote Indonesian village runs its own telecommunications company.

A four-hour drive from the nearest cellular coverage in the remote highlands of Papua, Indonesia, a new kind of guerilla telecom network is operating, albeit outside the law, using a cheap base station roped into a treetop.

The technology could provide a new model for self-managed “last mile” mobile coverage in the world’s hardest-to-reach areas, where traditional top-down telecommunications business models don’t work.

The project was set up by a team from the University of California, Berkeley. The resulting network is now operated by a tiny stand-alone telecommunications company run by a local NGO, with a laptop for local billing and a satellite connection to the rest of the world. The network relies on Swedish phone numbers because no local telecommunications company would provide them.

“It’s a telco-in-a-box that we put in a tree,” says Kurtis Heimerl, a developer at Range Networks and grad student at UC Berkeley who led the project. “It’s a demonstration that these populations can profitably and sustainably manage their own networks. We don’t need telcos to do this; these communities can do this by themselves.”

via A Guerilla Mobile Network Springs Up in Indonesia. It might be Christmas time, but I have a huge amount of catching up to do.  I have a roof that leaks like a sieve (I have kept up repairs, but I live in a wind tunnel.), a baby kat that needs a surrogate mom, an elderly terminally ill Silkie (he’s on Prednisone, so he’s hanging in there), and an enclosed patio that needs a lot of work thanks to that leaking roof.  Redneck engineering is for anyone, it used to be called niggerigging, (oh the humanity…that is so un pc).  I’m not as good as the MIT guys, but I can swing a hammer and I have a million and one ways to use duct tape.  LOL