Packet Radio BBS

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Packet Radio BBS Project aims to get OG BBS software working over packet radio as a joint BBS / Hambridge project.


LoRA BBS Options

LoRa stands for Long Range and is a license-free long-range radio technology.

A thread about using LoRa for a BBS with FidoNet message relaying has this to say:

I really don’t think LoRaWAN is a great contender for BBS’ing or general human-to-human communication in any sense. The LoRaWAN protocol is really designed for a large number of nodes to share a very limited upstream channel to a distant server, and have almost zero individual downstream capacity.

LoRa by itself though, that’s another matter. It’s a very promising modulation scheme and it brings us long range, wide-area wireless communication on license-free spectrum. That’s key. Speeds are slower than dripping tar by “modern” standards, but sufficient for rich human-to-human communication, and similar to dialup.

I could go on for hours on the topic, but I won’t bore you.

I did make an open source LoRa radio transceiver that connects to more or less any computer over USB serial though: It uses raw LoRa modulation and drops the overhead and design limitations of LoRaWAN.

I also put in significant amount of work on a protocol called Reticulum that is very well suited for running over “slow” links like LoRa, packet radio or dialup, but offers useful features like zero-conf routing and strong encryption by default. Preliminary info is here:

One of my main motivations for creating these projects is to implement a distributed, peer-to-peer BBS-like system that can be deployed over license-free radio spectrum, phone lines, the internet, or any combination with minimal cost and coordination required.

If any of that sounds interesting, I’ll be happy to answer any questions.