Welcome to the Personal Telco Project

The Personal Telco Project is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization located in Portland, Oregon dedicated to the idea that people should have a bigger say in how their networks are operated. We do that by building our own networks that we share with our communities, and by helping to educate others in how they can too. To date, we have done this using Wi-Fi technology. We began in 2000 by turning our own houses and apartments into wireless hotspots (or "nodes"), and then set about building networks in public locations such as parks and coffee shops. There are currently over 100 active nodes participating in our project. We would like to see people and businesses in every corner and on every block of the city participating.

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Help

Wiki projects can be a big place, you might start at the WikiTour and look over the HelpContents

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Contact Us

If you need help, or have a general question, please send an email to info@personaltelco.net, and someone will get back to you as soon as possible.

If you need technical operational support please send an email to ops@personaltelco.net. Keep in mind that we are a volunteer based Network Operations Team and we will try and respond as soon as we can.

If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions related to this website, please send an email to webmaster@personaltelco.net, and a web maintainer will get back to you as soon as possible.

Our Mission Statement

We are here to promote and build public wireless networks through community support and education.

This site aims to help you find what you need in order to get connected to the community wireless network, or to participate in it. We thrive on feedback; if you have a question, comment, suggestion, or just can't find what you need, don't hesitate to let us know.

Get Involved

Right now, there are about 2500 access points per square mile in Portland, roughly one every 100 feet in any direction, operated primarily by individuals and businesses. This is a tremendous opportunity for the people of Portland to create their own ubiquitous, free wifi, by joining with us in sharing our internet connections with our communities. It's not hard, and Personal Telco is here to help.

We hold fairly large monthly meetings and smaller weekly meetings, in addition to training days, "play days," and other gatherings. We welcome participation in any and all of these events, at any level, from everyone in the Portland area - or anyone at all interested in wireless! Join our mailing list, read the archives, join the live chat, ask questions, come to the meetings, put up your own node; it's easy, and we're here to help things go smoothly for you.

We welcome new members regardless of their level of knowledge. If help is needed setting up a node join the list, attend the meetings and someone will be glad to help out - getting up and running might be easier than you think! Personal Telco Project members volunteer to build wireless networks, in hopes of allowing access to everyone around the Portland area. The more nodes that can be sponsored by local businesses and individuals in high traffic areas, and in Portland's many neighborhoods, the more useful the network becomes to everyone.

If you are interested in hosting a node, or know of another person or business which might be willing to donate a little bandwidth and a window ledge for the good of the community, then please, let us know, and let them know about us! Personal Telco Project members are also working to assist and encourage local educational and community organizations to bring wireless networks to those who could not receive access otherwise. Please contact us if you are interested providing public wireless access through your organization.

Infrastructure Replacement Project

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We are actively seeking contributions to help fund a project to upgrade the routing equipment at some of our nodes.

http://www.personaltelco.net/donate

In earlier days, many of our hotspots were equipped with recycled PCs as routers. At the time it was a good solution. We received them as a donation, they still worked, we kept them out of a landfill, and they did a good job for us. However, because they have moving parts, they eventually fail. Because they are older, they are slower and need more electricity than newer devices. They are also bulky, heavy, generate heat and make a little bit of noise. Last year, some new devices became available that can do a better job, are much smaller, have no moving parts and use much less electricity (an annual savings of nearly $40). We would like to replace all of the old recycled PC (disposing of them responsibly) with these newer devices, but we need your help to do it. The total cost of the necessary equipment is about $5200, and we have already made a substantial dent in that. For details of the project, see AlixCab.

Please consider making a contribution to help us reach our goal. You can donate by PayPal, or by sending a check to our PostalAddress.

Thank you!

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