Johannes introduced myself so I donĀ“t have much to do. :-)

As he wrote we are going to build a hackbus or better a hack truck. We
are located in Leipzig, Germany but have also close relations to the
Dresden Hackerspace. Our idea was to create a vehicle and visit bar
camps in former sovet union states like kazakstan to share ideas and
learn, because there are a lot of phantastic things going on over
there. This was years ago long before we heard about the
hackbus-project. When we learned about it we get a lot if inspirations
and knew this is what we always wanted and happy to join the
When we thought about hte project we had many goals in mind but
realized soon it comes all back to the basic fact what we need is what
we like to share: a "open" vihicle so everybody is able to modify or
even copy it, just like software should be. So we needed a vihicle
with simple and tough technology everybody can fix and can do this in
bad conditions like somewhere far away at night during rain.  We are
thinking a hacker vehicle should be hackable by all means and not just
a vehicle to transport tools and stuff. It should be a message itself,
everybody can do this and it is not that much of work or expensive.
Because our main destination will be the eastern countries we realized
we need a vehicle with four wheel drive and able to drive long
distances without refueling or service. Our first thought was to
purchase a Mercedes Unimog but soon we realized it is too small, too
fragile and way too expensive for most people to copy our project. We
started to look for alternatives and soon found some pretty
interesting busses and trucks from former eastern block. Vehicles from
there are not famous for their good reputation but soon we learned it
is a typical western stereotype and not true for those type of
vehicles. Sure passenger cars was not a highlight of communist
technology, but as soon as we looked deeper under the hood of eastern
trucks we knew thats what we needed, simple and easy to fix tech,
highly modifyable, cheap and highly available in general. After some
time we also learned what genious design some of those trucks have,
opposide what we expected. Pretty often they found very simple
solutions for complicated problems. We in the west would solve those
problems with a lot of high tech, expensive, fragile and hard to fix
or replace.
After checking out some vehicles we found the IFA W50 would be the
vehicle of choice and started to looking for one. This was the
workinghorse for economical and military use in former eastern Germany
and many other communist countries. Opposide to the russian vehicles
known to consume a lot of petrol the IFA just needs around 20 litres
per 100km, as much as a bigger van needs. It is still in use today in
many countries and known to be very reliable. Parts are cheap and easy
to get, so we made our decision and bought one a few weeks ago. it is
not pretty, perhaps, but exactely what we wanted. It is a former
military tool car build in eastern germany for the Iraq airforce. They
sold it by tenthousends to arab countries during the 70s and 80s and
they are still in use over there, another point because spare parts
are available in Africa and the Arab world, too. We have no plans to
go there, yet, but perhaps we will do some day. Africa ist definately
a place where a lot of things needs to be "hacked".
Right now we are working on the car and will be done by the end of the
winter. Technicaly it is in a very good condition but the paint needs
some attention and of course the interior of the workshop. A million
little things needs do be done but we are positive to finish it before
the next spring. During the work on the vehicle we already started to
think about solutions not just for us but also usefull to others.
Especially ideas for the autonomous power supply is something we think
can be used by many people not able to be connected to public power
grid or for independend communication devices in countries with no or
insufficent communication systems. This is my personal favorite and I
am in this topic for more that 20 years now. My idea is a cheap and
easy to build Darrieus-Rotor as a replacement for the quite expensive
small windpower systems on the market. It should be enough to power
communication devices, small computers or a refrigorator. Last one is
also a project of us to build a cheap "open-source" refrigerator.
Beside clean water cooling is a big problem in developing countries to
keep food fresh because commerical fridges are too expensive. For us
it is a great opportunity to work on those projects, first because we
need it in our truck and second many other need it in their daily
life. So the work on the truck gives us the possibility to work on
those ideas. We have also some ideas for water filters without
expensive materials to use but this is after we finished the car. We
want to go step by step and not everything at once even if everything
is very interesting and important. ;-)
As I told before, the main purpose of the truck is to be a mobile
workshop and we already have a lot of tools. Beside this it should be
able to house at least two people for a longer time so we can go on
tour with it and dont need nothing else. It should have some suitable
communication devices like radio transmitter, packed radio if we are
on long tours to be connected. For domestic use we already have a
3G-Internet connection and a WLAN-Hotspot for public use. One of our
ideas is to park the car on public places, open the WLAN and set up a
vpn-tunnel to a server in Russia. So people can use the internet
without data retention or tapping of our officials and the russian
officials dont know where is using it on our side. Of course it is not
a anonymizing like tor does but it is a statement to show how easy it
is to fool the survailance systems and hopefully they realize it has
no sense to build more of it. Beside this it is great to show public
and not hide like hackers mostly do. So even just parking the car can
be a kind of a project. ;-)

bye bye

2011/8/21 das ende der nahrungskette <j...@monochrom.at>:
> Hey folks!
> We had quite some time of radio silence on this list... mainly because we
> were occupied getting our local Austrian hackbus project going.
> But now I would like to introduce you to our new mailing list member
> Alexander Heidenreich <422...@googlemail.com>... he is currently organizing
> a pretty awesome project in Eastern Germany.
> A hackbus (former old Soviet vehicle, as far as I remember) that he plans to
> take on tour to visit barcamps in Kazakhstan!
> Alexander, do you want to give us some details?
> All the best
> Johannes

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