Proposal for eyebeam workshop¶
Title: Tapped Out. Opting out of wiretapping with secure VoIP.
Workshop for a group to install and configure software for desktop and mobile
devices that allows them the ability to make secure voice and video calls over
the Internet. I operate a service called ostel.co, it's sponsored by The
Guardian Project. It proves that it is possible to build a network for secure
voice and video calling with open source software and Internet standards.
This is a radical proposition because it comoditizes what was previously
referred to as "telecommunications" into just another data service, like a web
site or Instant Message. Thanks to Internet standards approved by the
Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) client and server software can
be built to interoperate with any platform.
I will demonstrate how to install, configure and place secure calls to people
you know using only your mobile handsets and a wireless data connection.
I will also demonstrate what is required to run the server infrastructure to
support ostel.co. This includes an experimental project to build and operate
all the infrastructure on a US $35 Raspberry Pi.
Public service : https://ostel.co
The worhshop could go in a few different directions. If the Apple App Store
accepts a build of the client app I submit in September, I'll simply request
the participants "download the client app from the Apple App Store." Since
Apple's approval process is done in secret by fiat, I cannot promise you this
will happen. The second option is to install the app one by one on my computer
through a cable. I've done this before, it's straight forward, but it will take
On the Android platform this is not a problem because there will be a secure
client available by the workshop data. This is also not an issue for desktop.
The audience for this kind of technology is strange. I don't really understand
it yet. Based on user feedback, I get compliments or criticism from people
ranging from human rights activists, DC consultants, lawyers, journalists,
paranoid survivalists, naive Libretarians, angry Anarchists, idealistic
liberals, ambitious artists and last but not least the entirety of the hacker
I don't need a budget. I need space and a low latency Internet
connection. A wired
connection with some Wifi APs on the same subnet for the RPi demonstration
would be awesome.
I think this workshop will contribute a number of things to your event. First,
the confidence that private
video calling is possible. This is cutting edge in the context of the average
online user's expectations. Second, I'm offering a peer reviewed Skype
replacemant that is secure. Third, I think there is an interesting opportunity
for transmission art projects exploring secure communications. I believe it is
the responsiblity of all artists working outside of corporate sponsorship to
use open source software. This adds a few more possibilities to what kind of
preperations artists of this kind have to work with.
In response to your final question, I hope to get a few more ostel.co
users out of this experience.