State of the Mesh, August 2017

August 8, 2017

It's August. So the image is a pun this month. Also, we hope it gets renovated soon.

2017: Meta Mesh's Year of Progress


July was so busy! We did a ton of private jobs. We've also been hard at work preparing for the PittMesh Backhaul. Fortunately, we have really good news about that!


The City-wide PittMesh Backhaul Network:

We're making progress every week now on the PittMesh Backhaul! We have now set up a link between our KINBER connection and a volunteer's property in the South Side which has clear line of sight to a location in Allentown which will be this month's achievement- hopefully.

It's important that we set up our proof-of-concept to attract donors and to, ya know, make sure it works the way we say it will. We're using some cutting edge equipment from Ubiquiti: the Prismstation which is not yet for sale on mainstream markets.


Prismstation 5 AC. Looking pretty sick.


The Prismstation uses a noise-cancelling technology very similar to expensive headphones. But instead of cancelling out sound waves, the Prismstation cancels out errant 5 GHz radio waves, allowing for a cleaner point-to-point connection that allows for higher modulation schemes which in turn means faster connection speeds. How fast you ask? Take a look at our connection map for the next few months below. We've connection Uptown to the South Side, about 3/4 of a mile... at 300mbps. And this is without using the much quieter DFS channels which have not yet been approved yet through an update from Ubiquiti.


With this link, we'll be able to pipe in some fresh, farm-to-table Internet access to the South Side. We've already had some discussions with some good locations where we can give free Internet access. We can't say where yet, but we know that we'll be serving a lot of people every day, rain or shine, throughout the entire year!

We're still looking for other key locations in the South Side Slopes or on Mount Washington. If you know of a place friendly to making Pittsburgh a better place to live, let us know at


Volunteer Work:

This month we were asked to provide Internet access for an event downtown. We were asked by ADA PGH to provide a WiFi link so they could do a live stream of their event next to the Wyndham. They mentioned in passing that they were going to just use cell service and we said "naw, you're going to use Meta Mesh." They streamed a speech for 45 minutes and didn't incur any overage fees! We want to thank the Wyndham for accommodating us and for donating the bandwidth necessary to livestream the event. If you have an event you want Internet access spread throughout, we're happy to have a discussion with you! Speaking of which...


Meta Mesh to Provide Public WiFi at Hilltopolis:

Like music? Enjoy being outdoors? LOVE public WiFi? Well come on out SEPTEMBER 22nd and watch the Cool Kids and Pk Delay & Pet Zebra put on a sweet show with a sweeter view of the 'Burgh in the background. 

Hilltopolis is an outdoor festival highlighting social innovation through music and activism. National acts join with breakout local artists in an unforgettable setting to benefit Pittsburgh nonprofits.

Buy your tickets at

Meta Mesh Wireless Communities will be providing free public WiFi for the event using our KINBER fiber bandwidth and we couldn't be happier about it. We will be showing off how good mesh networking technology can be at the event while providing the bandwidth for a livestream of the performances! You know how we say we're working on things but we can't talk about them sometimes? Well this was one of them- and we're telling you now!


Bandwidth Coming to Allentown:


As part of the KINBER bandwidth we've been provided, we're bringing more Internet to Allentown! As part of the link described above, you can expect to see higher connection speeds on PittMesh in the near future in Allentown. We're proud to make this historic neighborhood a more livable place and we're doing our part to provide more ubiquitous WiFi in Atown.



Success Indicators:

We're going to be changing the way we count PittMesh Nodes on Because we want to make sure we're getting the credit we deserve (hah!) we're going to begin counting individual devices in addition to sites (which we called nodes before). For the purposes of this graphic, know that this is for sites. Although, we'll be removing some depricated or abandoned locations in the near future, so expect the numbers to get a little weird.

We have also had a lot of trouble getting accurate information from devices reporting currently connected clients due to a mysterious bug in our script but we have now fixed the issue AND expanded Grafana's ability to track data for up to a year. Expect higher numbers in the future now!




How you can help Meta Mesh this month:


Donate some cash to us, ok? We're going to be embarking on a serious PittMesh Backhaul investment and we'd love to get some cash set aside for investing in infrastructure!

Head on over to and make your tax-deductible donation.


Thank you from all of us at Meta Mesh! We'll see you next month!

Please let us know if you have donated something and let us know the cost so that we can give you a tax deduction form for you!


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