June 4, 2008 at 2:07 pm #2938
“Should we work on a list of potential uses it’d have aboard a seastead?”
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………….June 4, 2008 at 2:14 pm #2941
Trouted and humbled, dankon.June 4, 2008 at 2:45 pm #2946
June 4, 2008 at 3:19 pm #2949
- Hang gyro-stabilized transmitters from tethered hydrogen balloons. If I have the calculations right (formulas here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horizon ), the equipment would have to be 2,5 km above sea level on both sides for a 200nm link.
- I see now this was already suggested. Anyway, the altitude figures are perhaps interesting to play around with. I guess ideally you would use a fiber optic cable as the tether and power the transceiver with solar and/or wind. Or perhaps sending power up the tether wouldn´t be that difficult.
- Lightning and excessive wind are a couple of problems.
Balloons are really not a bad idea for some applications. Omnidirectional transmitters, radio repeaters, weather gear, etc. Weather gear is esigned to be recovered, but chaep enough to expend. I don’t think a balloon would work well for directional stuff like microwave… The cell “tower” idea might work, but that gear is very expensive and you really wouldn’t want it crashing into the ocean.June 4, 2008 at 6:06 pm #2957
Wireless Wi-Fi mesh networking provides redundent LAN and internet connectivity. The MeshBox with MeshAP, and open source system, autometically finds the best route to the internet through the mesh. MeshAP has been in service for 6 years now around the world in community and commercial wireless networks. http://www.locustworld.com/ . OpenMesh, http://www.dailywireless.org/2008/03/11/the-open-mesh-revolution/ , is a cheaper option.
More info on mesh networks at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wireless_mesh_networkJune 4, 2008 at 7:26 pm #2960
Redundant LAN connectivity, yes. But Internet connectivity presupposes that each WAP has a hard-wired Internet connection. You’re just not going to have that on the open ocean. Whatever LAN/MAN/SAN (Sea Area Network, lol) solution you come up with, it is going to have slow and somewhat unreliable WAN links to the WWW.June 5, 2008 at 2:37 pm #2997
Optical fiber cable may be an option. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fiber-optic_communication , http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Submarine_communications_cable
current landing sites: http://www.kidorf.com/DBLandings.phpJune 5, 2008 at 3:15 pm #2999
Certainly, for more successful (read: affluent) artificial island projects. Not going to do much for the mobile Seastead. Too expensive to lay underwater cable to a place where you’re not going to be for very long. Mooring buoys with fiber connections for whoever shows up occured to me, but it isn’t such a great idea, because of vandals and just plain lack of maintenance- if no one is responsible for it, no one goes to the expense of maintenance, especially if they’re not actively using it at the moment. Not to mention, any internet connection is only as valuable as the other end. Someone has to maintain equipment on the other end of your connection. They’re not going to do that for a connection that isn’t in use and isn’t being paid for.June 5, 2008 at 7:31 pm #3004
This could perhaps be done commercially if and when seasteading becomes more established. Submarine cable to a bouy, from there up to a balloon and then sell wireless subscriptions to seasteads and/or other clients on the ocean. Maybe not feasible everywhere but in popular seastead areas at least.June 5, 2008 at 11:41 pm #3021June 5, 2008 at 11:47 pm #3022
The seastead will be quite tall. A gyro-stabilized moored repeater spar bouy might be practical. You’d probably only have to connect to the nearest wind farm with a shore cable. None of these solutions sound like a fast and wide enough connection to satisfy anyone on this forum. Perhaps an interim plan that uses a subsea FO connection?June 6, 2008 at 10:48 am #3042
Most applications don’t need gyro-stabilization. Most short range comms are omnidirectional, most long range comms spread out to a wide footprint by the time they get out there a bit. Mostly it depends on how far away from landlines you are. The further you are, the less options and slower they will be. Even satellite has a LONG lag built in by physics that you will not overcome anytime soon. And if you have a means of circumventing the speed of light, then you shouldn’t be wasting your time talking about seasteads.
June 12, 2008 at 11:15 am #3202June 13, 2008 at 6:32 am #3217
- fiber will only be feasible for permanent settlements. It will be expensive.
I spent the last 3 years running a satellite internet provider in the middle east/central asia/north africa market.
For a baystead/coaststead, I’d go with 3G cell, wifi (or other open-band systems), or licensed microwave, maybe with a cheap domestic VSAT as backup (e.g. HughesNet)
Satellite basically falls into 3 categories: shared LEO, shared/contended GEO (using a hub located elsewhere), “big/dedicated” GEO point to point, and your own dedicated “hubbed” system. There are some big changes in the next 5 years which should improve performance for data sats (Ka-band replacing C and Ku band), and hopefully some new LEO constellation opportunities (a personal interest of mine is a cheaper space launch system to LEO, plus a nanosat constellation)
For a dedicated seastead somewhere else, it would depend a lot on scale, and where you’re located, but I personally have no interest in “ghetto” seasteads (that’s what the baysteads are for), only in large (100+ person), economically profitable seasteads or groups of seasteads for either large scale community building or exploiting specific resources (aquaculture, mining, logistics platforms etc.) Various factors apply – how big an earth station you can build on the seastead, stabilization, equipment cost vs. operating expense, any political risk you try to hedge by locating your “hub” in a friendly country, space segment availability in your specific market, etc.
For these, you’d be looking at multiple Mbps, and you’d ant a mix of systems for redundancy. For cost planning purposes, I’d estimate $1k/Mbps half-duplex for medium to large scale systems in the ocean, plus $100-200k capex (for the gryo mount, mainly). This would be for a seastead to shore link — a seastead-based network, which would depend only on in-orbit satellite, would require a $5m or so big dish on one of the platforms, and could share bandwidth to a bunch of other platforms with $50k setups for about $1500/Mbps. Costs might drop by 5-10x once Ka band is available in a given market. There are existing “contended access” systems which would be suitable for small scale seasteads with low use, but they’re all built on these cost estimates, plus 5x or so overhead, plus 2-3x admin/profit, so while you could get a bigger pipe (or spend less for the same size pipe), your use would be capped at about 1-3% of the monthly volume. Depending on use patterns, that might make sense.
It would be fun to finance this separately from the seasteads, and run a “decentralized utility company” selling power/water/net through local cogen on a bunch of seasteads, remote island markets, etc. Assuming a reasonable rate of return, this would let 20 year infrastructure investments get financed through public capital markets, with revenue coming from use charges. This would let the infrastructure have economies of scale, do tech development and amortize costs over lots of seasteads, etc.June 27, 2008 at 6:25 am #3386
I don’t see what the big deal is about the internet connection. When I took a cruise from San Diego to Alaska and back, there was an internet cafe on board that worked pretty much the whole way. It wasn’t as fast as my home connection, but it was shared across many computers and had a very reasonable speed (for basic browsing anyway).
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