Comment on The Sticker Network

BenRayfield Sat, Jul 31, 2010
I wrote about centrally controlled internet hardware compared to peer-to-peer internet hardware, like "the sticker network", in these threads:

This thread is about a theoretical network of solar-powered stickers that form a wireless network, instead of needing (but optionally using) internet service providers (ISPs). Its the best way to solve internet censoring, payments for what should be free, and bottlenecks.

If explained the right way, we could get lots of people do donate money to design, prototype, and mass-produce such stickers for maybe $5 each, or a higher cost for stickers with bigger batteries and wireless range. If this project really gets started, I want to be part of it.

How much money would it cost to design and create a few prototype stickers and use them?

If we do it without patents, like  is a software and hardware (for brain-computer communication through the electricity on the skin of your head), then  would be a good place to look for money.

If we do it with patents, then "angel investors" (which have more freedom and less money than "venture capitalists"), like in Silicon Valley (where I worked for 3 years), would be a good place to start.

Such investors usually do 2 or 3 rounds of funding, each time making a new deal and adjusting the plans for the project, eventually leading to an "exit" (as they call it) where you pay them millions of dollars and then the business is completely yours.

I prefer to do it the open-source way without patents, but that way is harder to get started, and whatever money you make is much more indirect, like you would become noticed as someone who did something amazing and therefore people would want to include you in other business deals.

My main interest in this is to free the internet from central control and start the slow process of putting up peer-to-peer network routers (as stickers, for example). But if we can't do it that way, letting investors own some of it for a few years is better than not doing it at all.

Who wants to help with this project?

We need people specialized in peer-to-peer networks, internet hardware, the legal issues involving putting up a network that can't be regulated or censored, and hardware designers, people to test the prototypes, and somebody who can get a factory to mass-produce it. Did I miss any of the abilities we need?

I'm sure theres many businesses and parts of the USA government that would want to prevent us from creating such a sticker network. They will not be too much of a problem, because their only 3 choices are:

(1) Publicly announce that it is illegal to communicate in ways they can not control, which violates "the right to free speech" (which in court rulings has expanded to computer communications). The USA government would not dare choose this option because it could result in civil war as a result of directly saying we do not have the right to free speech even if we do all the work to communicate. OR

(2) Resist us in any way, which would result in a court case about "free speech", which the government would lose because that part of the USA Constitution has not been repealed, and they would not dare oppose it so directly. They would only oppose it indirectly by controlling busineses. (2) leads to (1). OR

(3) Allow us to create the sticker network, as freedom of speech allows us to do. (2) and (1), if the government chooses those, lead to (3).

In any case, government resistance to such a sticker network will not be a permanent problem, and we should build it.

The biggest benefit of starting such a sticker network is it eventually would lead to some or all internet service providers (ISPs), television and radio businesses, cell phone towers, cell phone businesses, all going out of business or being forced to compete in a fair market without their monopoly advantages. Lets create our own communication infrastructure, our own cell-phones that don't cost $2 per megabyte to use the internet, and obsolete the centrally controlled infrastructure. Lets start with a small sticker network and let it grow as people see it has more freedom.

If the power grid goes down, our solar-powered communication network stays up. The original purpose of the internet (when it was called ARPANET) was more reliable communication, especially during wars. We can improve on that. Cut every power line, phone line, bomb every building in the country, and our infrastructure would still work.

There is still the question of how to do addresses in this network. Except for backward-compatibility with the existing internet, I don't see a need to have anything like IP addresses or any way to uniquely identify a certain sticker or computer connected to them. Do it all by content instead of symbols for from/to addresses, totally anonymous and by behavior instead of labels, except for connecting to the existing internet.

Bluetooth, I've heard, negotiates frequencies with other bluetooth devices in an emergent way. We could do something similar. If bluetooth has patents on all possible ways to create a peer-to-peer network, then we invalidate their patents for being a monopoly on all possible ways to build a new kind of peer-to-peer wireless network. Legally we have the right to create such a network, as explained above, therefore any patents blocking us from it are invalid.

Optionally, if I can get my planned (but not built) Schrodingers Network Router software to work any small amount, then we could use a similar design (but different since its wireless which is more analog and closer to the speed of light) to create a "sticker network" across this Earth and across an infinite number of parallel Earths in the same way that Schrodinger's Cat can be both alive and dead at the same time in 2 parallel Earths, as multiverse physics says. This part will depend on if such experiments work or not, and I don't know when I'll have time to do them, but I will get to it. The sticker network is also a long-term project. Basically the way a sticker could be a multiverse network router is to choose the outgoing routing directions based on small changes in the timing and content of incoming data, and based on some learned reaction to it that allows the output now to statistically influence the input half a second from now more than you would expect it to happen without using the multiverse. Optionally, for little extra cost per sticker, they can expand the internet into an infinite number of parallel Earths, which should solve the bandwidth problems caused by small batteries.