Shika Moto: Changing the way Communities Communicate
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The story of Shika Moto
Our goal is to help build an informed and engaged citizenry. Shika Moto is the result of many years of carefully planned design and development, created to give people access to information and inspire them to learn and grow. We believe that the internet is a tool which has the capacity for effective participation and democratisation in a way which hasn’t been conceived of before. This makes it even more important that we all make an effort to ensure everyone is connected and that the internet stays a tool for democracy.
Shika Moto holds at its heart the principle of freedom. The freedom to learn, to grow and to change. Access to the internet is one of the most important tools for building a pathway to these freedoms. Shika Moto delivers internet services on a local network to people who either don’t have great internet access or who haven’t had access before.
Shika Moto is:
- A low cost solution to a problem that has a high personal cost
- Easy to install and maintain in, and by, the community
- The perfect gateway to building a community
- An impressively simple and effective tool which benefits corporate social responsibility programmes
How does it work?
Designed and built in South Africa, Shika Moto’s free wireless network is developed using a master node with a number of base nodes. The master node is installed at a central point with each additional base node spiralling outward in a circle to create a network 3-5km in diameter. The nodes are hosted at the homes of volunteers and are water and weather-proof so they can provide the best possible signal. Unshaped, uncapped and unfettered. The network provides free internet-like services on a local network and comes with a community page, a chat feature called ShikaJabber.
Introducing Shika Share
Shika Share is an exciting data sharing option which empowers entrepreneurs and skills development. The level of access to the internet is determined by the administrator who can either be a community leader or a representative from your organisation. Access to the internet as a whole is restricted (unless Shika Share is being used) due to bandwidth constraints, but specific sites and locations can be pre-set from the start. Shika Share allows for those who host nodes at their site to buy and sell data to the community. They can purchase a dongle and data and then sell it off in packets, each size pre-determined in price and megabytes by the Shika Moto system. Thanks to Shika Share people can log in and gain access to any part of the internet they choose – their only limitations are the megabytes they’ve bought and how long these last. Shika Share gives people within the community the