During the Community Session at The Things Conference 2020 (called ’ The Future of The Things Network’) @lornagoulden led a ‘panel discussion’ where different community initiators (@lornagoulden, @mark-stanley, @Maj and @gonzalo) provided information on the setup and workings of their ‘local’ community. @wienkegiezeman provided the perspective from TTN.
It was interesting to see the different paths these communities traveled/are traveling.
During the questions/feedback it became clear communities would benefit from sharing of the knowledge on how and why things are done the way they are by existing communities and what works and what mistakes have been made.
It was also mentioned the current communication solution (a slack channel) does not work well for this purpose as messages disappear due to the limit on all messages within the (free) slack instance.
A new forum category has been created to facilitate exchanging knowledge on the TTN forum without the need to add another communication channel.
I would like to invite all community initiators to share their stories, plans for going forward and questions so we can all learn. The category and all messages are visible to all forum visitors. Drop me a PM if we need something more private to share (semi) confidential information and I’ll see what can be arranged.
@wienkegiezeman @lornagoulden I don’t think the session was recorded (or was it) so would it be possible to share the presentation used?
I think this is a nice idea Kersing.
Here in Madrid we are focusing on smoothing the TTN learning curve.
Our main aim is to prove that citizens can provide themselves with an open, free, neutral and useful IoT network.
We organize meetups every friday to introduce TTN and related IoT techonologies/platforms.
We have also developed a few nodes based upon Atmega328, ESP03 and RFM95W, focused on flexibility.
Some concerns among the members of our community are:
- TTN console occasional instability
- TTN/TTI cooperation (packet broker?)
- Integration of TTN with opensource IoT platforms like ThingsBoard/Grafana
- Lucrative activities over TTN network
- Legal issues regarding sharing private/public internet connections indiscriminately through our LoRaWAN gateways
- How to involve public sector entities in TTN
Thanks for kicking off this thread @kersing!
As a brief summary, in Zurich our main focus has been lately to ensure sustainability of the network. Our observation is that the community a) has a cyclic enthusiasm, and b) that the 1% rule of the Internet is very much a fact.
The regular meetups help to keep up the enthusiasm levels up; and on top of that, we organize once a year a large hackathon based on TTN which as well, boosts the engagement quite a bit.
The 1% rule is a harder nut to crack; it means we rely on very few active member to keep everything up and running; so we believe the only sustainable way forward is to engage with institutions that would have a longer-term commitment. This does not fix the 1%, but it basically means core parts of the infrastructure are supported beyond the lifetime of the 1% active members (which in turns gives time for other members to become active). In practical terms, this translates into engaging universities, non-profits, and also for-profit entities to run and operate gateways, to run services for the network, etc.
The legal aspects and the involvement of the public sector are things that we did tackle already, so we can share our experiences.
So, at the moment, our main focus is:
- Ensure a sound legal framework is in place.
- Ensure we have enough institutional support (infrastructural support, not financial) to keep going for the long term.
- Promote the technology and the network, and spread the word.
Towards those goals, we:
- Setup a non-profit civil association called Open Network Infrastructure Association to provide legal framework and identity. All our documents are open source if anyone wants to replicate: https://github.com/open-network-infrastructure
- Constantly engage non-profit and for-profit entities to convince them of the benefits of operating gateways for the network. (We explicitly aim at not running the gateways ourselves, but instead helping them do that on their own).
- Organize the MakeZurich hackathon on a semi-year basis to spread the word. We also open source a large amount of documentation on how to run this hackathon and also actively promote the idea that the hackathon is to be replicated (forked) in other communities.
This forum is a great start; perhaps once this starts to fill up, we could kick off a github repo with a slightly structured set of HOWTOs for running a TTN community, acknowledging the diversity of paths available.
I wish it was, i had to leave early and therefore missed the most interesting part with the vision of panel members on this topic.
4 posts were split to a new topic: Gateway capacity report request
Please note that not all community related knowledge transfer needs to go into this very topic here. Instead, the category can be used to tag topics; see https://www.thethingsnetwork.org/forum/c/regions/knowledge-exchange