Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

World's First Voice Call From a Free GSM Stack

timothy posted about 4 years ago | from the but-it-takes-more-than-a-pdf-exploit dept.

Cellphones 83

zycx writes "As Dieter Spaar has pointed out in a mailing list post on the OsmocomBB developer list, he has managed to get a first alpha version of TCH (Traffic Channel) code released, supporting the FR and EFR GSM codecs. What this means, in human readable language: He can actually make voice calls from a mobile phone that runs the Free Software OsmocomBB GSM stack on its baseband processor. This is a major milestone in the history of the project."

cancel ×

83 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

GSM Full Rate patent (4, Informative)

tepples (727027) | about 4 years ago | (#33250286)

I thought the GSM voice codecs were patented by Philips, as described in this page about an otherwise Free implementation of GSM FR [quut.com] .

Re:GSM Full Rate patent (0)

odies (1869886) | about 4 years ago | (#33250408)

More so, it establishes the fact that theres little to none support for specialized open source projects. OS, web browser.. sure. But when it's things like GSM stack or anything non-mainstream or something highly technical (CAD software too), it doesn't seem like open source solutions can really compare. It looks like the authors of this were thinking along the same way:

Combining both of their work together, they have been able to make a 20 minute long voice call from a baseband processor running a Free Software GSM stack. For all we know, it is the first time anything remotely like this has been done using community-developed Free Software. Five years ago I would have thought it's impossible to pull this off with a small team of volunteers.

It's great that they have done so, but what does it really do? How is it useful to me or companies?

Re:GSM Full Rate patent (1)

jack2000 (1178961) | about 4 years ago | (#33250716)

Think an open source phone that can't have all it's data downloaded by the authorities. Or maybe a phone that you can change everything about. No more vendor lock bullshit.

OpenSores, ALWAYS YEARSSSS BEHIND !! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33251862)

Go with opensores and you too can be not only behind the curve, but on a curve that no one much cares about outside the poor nations in Africa and eastern Europe.

Re:GSM Full Rate patent (1)

mikiN (75494) | about 4 years ago | (#33259526)

Almost right. You would also need an bunch of open-source cell towers and an open-source backbone network to connect them together and to the rest of the telcos, nevermind a rackstack full of licenses to operate all that.
Leave anything in that list up to chance (read: COTS or outsourced) and you're back to square one: the Feds, foreign spyops and/or crooks _will_ have a way in. ...Oh yeah, you also need a platoon of volunteers to patrol all your cell sites and backbone 24/7 to keep the rodents, copper thieves, spies and crooks away from your gear.

Re:GSM Full Rate patent (1)

mikiN (75494) | about 4 years ago | (#33259650)

whoops, think I misread GP's post when I typed up that sarcastic reply.

To prevent your phone's data from being downloaded, you don't necessarily need an open source baseband, you just need to tightly control its communication with the rest of the OS. Turn it into a black box with just the antenna, power, dialing control, audio and a data channel connected to it. Get rid of the tight coupling with the OS already.

Don't get me wrong, IMO open-source baseband software is uber-cool, but the Feds will never willingly approve its use on the mobile networks, they're just too brittle.

Imagine what would happen when cool doodz start swapping millions of working ESN / MEID or IMEI / MSN / SIM data combos on the pirate bay? Instant telecommunications mayhem.

Re:GSM Full Rate patent (1)

squiggleslash (241428) | about 4 years ago | (#33250410)

No idea, but (a) that isn't what this is about, and (b) GSM-FR audio codecs have been distributed with free and proprietary audio packages for years.

Re:GSM Full Rate patent (3, Informative)

GNUALMAFUERTE (697061) | about 4 years ago | (#33250538)

It is in fact the main codec used in most of my Asterisk systems. The implementation is 100% Free Software. Is it patent-free? No. But nobody has sued anybody so far, mainly because the big guys don't see its use in VoIP as a threat to their big-ass systems used in GSM networks. Now, this might be a different situation.

Got more links about GSM patents? (3, Interesting)

ciaran_o_riordan (662132) | about 4 years ago | (#33250422)

If you've any other links, I'd like to add them here:

http://en.swpat.org/wiki/GSM [swpat.org]

Re:GSM Full Rate patent (1)

Yvanhoe (564877) | about 4 years ago | (#33250690)

Codec patents are not legal everywhere. And the places where they are not legal will probably have a monopoly in a lot of awesome things that are to come.

I live in USA, you insensitive clod! (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 years ago | (#33250768)

Codec patents are not legal everywhere.

I can't think of any company whose customers all have the finances to emigrate from software patent countries.

Re:I live in USA, you insensitive clod! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33250972)

Just make the customers in software patent countries pay through the nose for licenses for closed source versions. And rub it in by mentioning it in the manual.

Re:I live in USA, you insensitive clod! (1)

Thomas Shaddack (709926) | about 4 years ago | (#33254702)

Why emigrate yourself when your phone (or other device) can become an immigrant, even if illegal? I think it is called a mail order.

This is illegal, you know (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 years ago | (#33256294)

Why emigrate yourself when your phone (or other device) can become an immigrant, even if illegal?

Because this is illegal, you know [youtube.com] . You're out of pocket $200 for a product that got confiscated at the border.

Legal schmegal... (1)

Thomas Shaddack (709926) | about 4 years ago | (#33256352)

The customs are a bunch of idiots who cannot recognize an op-amp from an ADC if they'd've stepped on a DIP one pins-up, barefoot. If they weren't, they wouldn't be working as low-level drones. Just get an offshore friend to take the thing apart and ship it declared as spare parts (send the plastic housing shell as a separate shipment, so the recognizable parts won't attract undue attention to the important parts), or get somebody to carry it in a luggage as a personal possession when traveling in. Works virtually every time.

Re:GSM Full Rate patent (1)

neonsignal (890658) | about 4 years ago | (#33252390)

Philips might claim that their patent covers it, but only a court can make this determination.

If we are going to talk about software and patents, then just about every bit of software in the world potentially infringes some patent, so it is hardly notable to say that this bit of software does.

What is notable about the project is not the codecs, but the integration of a full GSM stack.

Pardon me, but.... (3, Interesting)

WED Fan (911325) | about 4 years ago | (#33250362)

Pardon me, but what does this really mean? Does this mean that we could develop our out cell phones, a kind of born unlocked? Would this allow us to create our own devices that include GSM without relying upon the industry providing us feature sets we don't want or need?

Is this really historic, or just a really nerdy, geeky milestone?

In other words: What will this do for me?

Re:Pardon me, but.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33250414)

In other words: What will this do for me?

You can run this on your tuxphone, and attract the sorts of women you want

Re:Pardon me, but.... (2, Informative)

pyr0r0ck3r (702602) | about 4 years ago | (#33250438)

If I'm reading correctly, yes, eventually you could roll your own phone using completely open source stuff - hw and sw. What I'm less clear on is how the signal is being carried. Granted, I didn't read too in depth, but you still need a carrier to allow your phone on their network, no?

Re:Pardon me, but.... (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 years ago | (#33250490)

you still need a carrier to allow your phone on their network, no?

You must have GSM confused with CDMA2000. In GSM, as I understand it, carriers don't allow handsets on their network; they allow SIMs on their network.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (3, Informative)

Gruturo (141223) | about 4 years ago | (#33250536)

You must have GSM confused with CDMA2000. In GSM, as I understand it, carriers don't allow handsets on their network; they allow SIMs on their network.

Not quite. The phone has to be allowed as well, its maker and model are sort of embedded in its IMEI and there are blacklist (not just for stolen handsets, but also for models with critical radio flaws which would not work or even disrupt the network in their vicinity while operating).

IMEI blacklisting practices (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 years ago | (#33250586)

its maker and model are sort of embedded in its IMEI and there are blacklist (not just for stolen handsets, but also for models with critical radio flaws

Thanks for pointing this out. But every time I searched Google for gsm imei blacklist plus some other keywords, there were so many results about stolen handsets that I couldn't find any related to radio problems. Can you provide a reference or other keywords that would help me learn more about how carriers manage their IMEI blacklists?

Re:IMEI blacklisting practices (1)

dixiecko (1002594) | about 4 years ago | (#33250614)

look for EIR: http://www.telecomspace.com/gsm.html [telecomspace.com]

Re:IMEI blacklisting practices (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 years ago | (#33250878)

Thanks for mentioning EIR. I learned that the EIR splits IMEIs into three categories: black, gray, and white categories. Black IMEIs are supposed to be stolen or known to cause network problems, gray IMEIs are supposed to be those that may cause minor problems, and white IMEIs are supposed to be those certified by the network operator. What remains is how GSM networks, including the two major U.S. GSM networks, would classify unknown makes and models: would they be gray by default or black by default?

Re:IMEI blacklisting practices (1)

J Isaksson (721660) | about 4 years ago | (#33251934)

Not black at least, I've been roaming with various European model cell phones while visiting the US without any problems.

Re:IMEI blacklisting practices (1)

dgatwood (11270) | about 4 years ago | (#33252466)

Matters not. The IMEI is typically controlled by the radio firmware, not hardware, AFAIK. If you're writing your own firmware stack, it should be trivial to lie and claim to be supported hardware, and there's really very little the carrier can do about it (except in countries where doing so is illegal, of course).

Re:IMEI blacklisting practices (1)

RockDoctor (15477) | about 4 years ago | (#33255938)

If you're writing your own firmware stack, it should be trivial to lie and claim to be supported hardware, and there's really very little the carrier can do about it (except in countries where doing so is illegal, of course).

Brushing aside the legality of the misrepresentation, what could the carriers do about it? The only thing that I can think would be that they would have to implement a whitelist of known-good phones (individual phones, not phone models) and to check for duplicate appearances (so that if phone X appears in two separate places at once, one or both of them gets banned). That would imply either a severe (unacceptable) restriction on roaming, or regular checking of multi-billion record long databases. Non-trivial.

The consequences when a new model - or even a simple new phone - comes out ... some sort of administrative registration process to get the numbers into the whitelist, wait for all copies of the database to be updated? Not good.

Re:IMEI blacklisting practices (1)

HybridJeff (717521) | about 4 years ago | (#33254478)

To my knowledge whitelist phones are normally those branded and sold by the provider, greylist phones would include all unlocked devices ported for other providers and blacklisted devices are usually those reported as stolen or disabled for other reasons (for example if your provider provides a subsidized or free replacement for a phone you claim is broken).

Re:IMEI blacklisting practices (1)

mikiN (75494) | about 4 years ago | (#33259764)

Depends on what you mean by 'unknown'.

Unknown to the carrier is a no-brainer, they must be able to admit imported phones on their network (unless they sell only sim-locked contracts and allow no inbound roaming).
I believe (haven't checked fully) that IMEIs for all GSM phones need to be registered with a central database [gsm.org] before they're released into circulation at all.

Depending on strictness, unregistered devices may not be allowed on the network at all (India) or be very restricted in available features.

Re:IMEI blacklisting practices (4, Informative)

Gruturo (141223) | about 4 years ago | (#33250802)

The white/black/grey lists are held in the EIR (Equipment Identity Register), which may or may not exist at all (it's optional, some providers don't have one) and is sometimes integrated within the HLR

This is an explanation (a bit dated, but still) of how to decode manufacturer code, country code, approval code etc from the IMEI: http://www.cellular.co.za/ieminumbers.htm [cellular.co.za]

More info (just relevant stuff which came up googling "imei hlr eir"):
http://www.linkedin.com/answers/technology/wireless/TCH_WIR/612218-35166861 [linkedin.com]
http://www.linkedin.com/answers/technology/wireless/TCH_WIR/608687-35166861 [linkedin.com]
http://www.wordiq.com/definition/HLR#EIR [wordiq.com]

Brief description of the (global?) IMEI DB at the gsmworld site: http://www.gsmworld.com/our-work/programmes-and-initiatives/fraud-and-security/imei_database.htm [gsmworld.com]

Re:Pardon me, but.... (2, Interesting)

jack2000 (1178961) | about 4 years ago | (#33250764)

Your phone could just LIE about it's IMEI, as i see it if it's all open source you can make it return whatever IMEI you want.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (2, Interesting)

dave420 (699308) | about 4 years ago | (#33251710)

Which is illegal in some places, such as the UK.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33253198)

It's illegal pretty much everywhere the minute you put the phone on the air without a license.

It's also illegal to drive 56 MPH in a 55 MPH zone. Ric has more on the growing problem known as "speeding" at 10.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (2, Insightful)

Thomas Shaddack (709926) | about 4 years ago | (#33254712)

It's illegal only if you get caught. Which, if you don't cause significant billing or technical anomalies, is rather infinitesimally low chance. I'd say well-worth the risk.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (2, Interesting)

Shoe Puppet (1557239) | about 4 years ago | (#33250776)

I bet you can fake the IMEI if you control the GSM stack.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | about 4 years ago | (#33257572)

So does that mean that this "open phone" still needs a SIM issued from the carrier, like AT&T or T-Mobile?

The phone also has to have an IMEI that the carrier recognizes, which means it can't be generated arbitrarily by this open phone, right? If so, can I clone the IMEI from a phone the carrier issued to me over to the open phone?

And will this stack run on an Android phone?

Other than those two dependencies, could I just switch over to an open phone I install on an Android phone available today?

Re:Pardon me, but.... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33250870)

The GSM frequency bands are licensed spectrum. You can not legally operate a DIY device on these frequencies without prior approval of the license holders. (There is a loophole: some of the frequencies used for GSM in Europe overlap with amateur radio frequencies in the US, but then you have to operate your own "network" as well, not just the handset.)

Re:Pardon me, but.... (1)

tepples (727027) | about 4 years ago | (#33250900)

You can not legally operate a DIY device on these frequencies without prior approval of the license holders

As I understand it, the license holders are the carriers. I searched Google for get handset approved on t-mobile, but I couldn't find anything relevant.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (1)

schnell (163007) | about 4 years ago | (#33252410)

Here's AT&T's handset approval and certification [att.com] process as an example, and here is Verizon's [verizon.com] . Nearly all carriers around the globe have them - some are very rigorous and demanding, while others are not much more than checking your CTIA and [your country's version of the FCC] radio performance certifications.

Regarding your specific example of T-Mobile USA - their certification process is known to be really easy, which makes things less onerous for handset developers but also doesn't catch sometimes serious bugs and issues like the Nexus One 3G problems [gizmodo.com] . AT&T and Verizon have much more rigorous device certification processes (more of a PITA but better QA), and Sprint is somewhere in between.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (1)

CyberDragon777 (1573387) | about 4 years ago | (#33250532)

You subscribe to a carrier and put the SIM card in your unlocked phone.
At least this is how it works in Europe.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (4, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 4 years ago | (#33250472)

What this means is that it is now theoretically possible to have a phone with zero closed source code. So far all phones have had at least proprietary radio module code.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33250758)

Being able to do without closed sourced firmware does not mean that it is patent free.
Also SIM module will still have proprietary code. :P

Re:Pardon me, but.... (1)

Ramble (940291) | about 4 years ago | (#33251078)

I don't think so, AFAIK the SIM holds keys and identification info but no actual 'code'.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (1)

sznupi (719324) | about 4 years ago | (#33252878)

All those data & authorisation are accessed via applications running on what is really a smart card.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (1)

JuniorJack (737202) | about 4 years ago | (#33251728)

According to the wiki, it could be used only with openbts due to legal obstacles - FCC licensing and so on

Re:Pardon me, but.... (1)

BorgDrone (64343) | about 4 years ago | (#33251732)

If you start working on that phone now, you might even get a few months use out of it once you're finished. Don't expect too many GSM networks to still be around in a few years time.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (2, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | about 4 years ago | (#33252180)

If you start working on that phone now, you might even get a few months use out of it once you're finished. Don't expect too many GSM networks to still be around in a few years time.

Keeping GSM turned on is the only way that can AT&T's Christo-inspired TV commercial can claim 97% coverage. There's no way that AT&T will have UMTS everywhere and that even the cheap GoPhone handsets will support UMTS by the time it deploys LTE.

Re:Pardon me, but.... (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about 4 years ago | (#33252056)

Does this mean that we could develop our out cell phones, a kind of born unlocked?

Which you can get all day long now from china wholesalers, who can afford to build the devices. ( setting up to produce devices like a cell phone isn't exactly trivial ) Sounds more like just 'cool factor' to me unless I'm misunderstanding something.

Obligatory... (0, Redundant)

davidwr (791652) | about 4 years ago | (#33250364)

Can you hear me now?

Actually it would be... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33252550)

..."GPL--Come here--I want to see you"

Congratulations! (2, Insightful)

gweihir (88907) | about 4 years ago | (#33250402)

Sounds like a pretty impressive feat. Shows that talented, dedicated individuals collaborating in a small group are still by far the most effective way to create software. All that "process" and "management" BS can do is decrease the performance of talented people. And with untalented ones, the final product will always suck, no matter what "process" or "management method" is used.

Re:Congratulations! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33251372)

WTF are you smoking? This is open source catching up with what proprietary software has done for YEARS. And sorry but,

All that "process" and "management" BS can do is decrease the performance of talented people.

[citation-required]

Re:Congratulations! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33251552)

WTF are you smoking? This is open source catching up with what proprietary software has done for YEARS. And sorry but,

All that "process" and "management" BS can do is decrease the performance of talented people.

[citation-required]

so agreed. he was just pandering to an attitude very common on slashdot and got rewarded with plus mod points

LOL (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33250478)

What this means, in human readable language: He can actually make voice calls from a mobile phone that runs the Free Software OsmocomBB GSM stack on its baseband processor.

FUCK YOU!

this is slashdot in 2010 the nerds have gone all to 4chan...

Re:LOL (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33251618)

It was copied from Harald Weite's blog [gnumonks.org] , for what that information might be worth.

So what this means is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33250484)

So basically what the article is saying is that these guys have the bragging rights for developing an open source GSM transmitting platform? Congrats I guess, but seeing as how GSM has been around for quite a while and is actually nearing the end of its life cycle, the applications for this platform is limited. Good news for hobbyists and tinkerers though. Will be interesting to see what sort of stuff comes out of the woodwork.

Re:So what this means is (1)

LingNoi (1066278) | about 4 years ago | (#33251782)

I love how whenever someone does something fricken awesome, like makes a way for you to set up your own phone network for free minus hardware there's always some dumb shit on slashdot ready to poop poop the whole thing.

Re:So what this means is (1)

sznupi (719324) | about 4 years ago | (#33252778)

I would be a bit surprised if GSM goes away anytime soon. Most of the world is still on it, not even on 3G/UMTS - I expcet this one to go away sooner, replaced with LTE when all handsets (used by those who care about bandwith) will have it.

But GSM...it looks like one of those "good enough" things, especially if you want to maintain wide coverage.

Re:So what this means is (1)

silanea (1241518) | about 4 years ago | (#33257726)

With an open source GSM access point [wikipedia.org] to go with your open source GSM stack you can create your own GSM network, both towers and handsets - if you can afford to ignore frequency spectrum regulations and and patent issues. Think developing countries that want to roll their own gear and not let foreign companies take their market. And GSM will be around for a long time. You would not believe what kinds of devices use it to communicate. Even if all handsets switched to UMTS today there should be sufficient demand to keep GSM alive, albeit not with today's coverage and probably with higher charges.

Big deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33250508)

ok, so.... he can make a phone call. Big Deal! Let me know when the call is free (not just the software)

First Call (5, Funny)

Nerdfest (867930) | about 4 years ago | (#33250510)

"Mr Stallman, come here, I want to see you!".

Re:First Call (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33250612)

As far as I know, the primary reason why rms doesn't have a cell phone is because he doesn't want to be tracked [stallman.org] , and not because it contains non-free software (though that may be an additional reason...):

Police in the US use cell phones to track people's movements, real time. They can collect records of your past movements without meeting even the usual standard for a search warrant. Now courts are considering whether they must meet that standard for real-time tracking.

This is why I do not have a cell phone: I don't want to give the police a record of everywhere I go. It's not that I have something specific to hide; rather, it's my duty as a citizen to resist the total surveillance state.

Re:First Call (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 4 years ago | (#33251638)

Meh. I have a mobile phone and mainly leave it in my house when I go out, unless I am actively expecting a call. The police are welcome to track it - maybe if I decide to become a criminal I can use it as an alibi...

Re:First Call (1)

sznupi (719324) | about 4 years ago | (#33252754)

You can't be tracked if the phone is turned off... (heck, it doesn't even need to have a SIM card; still useful in emergency situations)

Re:First Call (1)

GrumblyStuff (870046) | about 4 years ago | (#33255396)

Is this the same phone that still dials 911 when off? Or do you remove the battery when you don't want to use it? (And looked inside it for another.)

Re:First Call (1)

sznupi (719324) | about 4 years ago | (#33255414)

Turning it on for 112 is not so hard. And don't believe in too many conspiracy stories...

Re:First Call (1)

OutputLogic (1566511) | about 4 years ago | (#33250866)

Somebody is calling from a stack of free GSM

Re:First Call (1)

sznupi (719324) | about 4 years ago | (#33251172)

I don't see how this way of bootstrapping Stallman into phones could work - how will ge answer the first call?

(yes, yes, POTS - but I imagine you have to search nowadays to find a phone which doesn't have some closed firmware)

Re:First Call (1)

OldeClegg (32696) | about 4 years ago | (#33255768)

rofl wild applause!

Congrats!! (0, Troll)

udippel (562132) | about 4 years ago | (#33250640)

Not only Free and Open Source Software, you also beat a lefthanded iPhone hands down with TWENTY minutes of call time!

Well (3, Insightful)

ledow (319597) | about 4 years ago | (#33250838)

According to the all-knowing Wiki: "phase I of the GSM specifications were published in 1990"

So, depending on your point of view:

- it's taken 20 years to implement something that had a published standard and worldwide, cheap hardware examples used by millions of people every day.

- the standards took 20 years for an outsider to be able to implement them independently.

And we're still only talking alpha code with specialised hardware.

What could cause a 20 year delay ... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33250856)

... perhaps the first patents expired.

Re:Well (4, Insightful)

blair1q (305137) | about 4 years ago | (#33250978)

Actually, it's been done dozens of times before.

By people who had proprietary knowledge enabling them to use the hardware properly, and hardware to do it on.

The software is not that special, and the system isn't either.

It's constructing the electronics that are capable of doing all the things needed to get the job done that slows you down.

Big companies have $billions to invest in making complex micro-gadgets that they can sell for a $thousand each other big companies who can find millions of little people to rent them for a $hundred a month to send sexts and tweets. You expect things to get done in that business model.

People with the word "free" in their corporate charter, not so much.

Besides, there were other things we wanted to get done [gnu.org] .

Re:Well (2, Insightful)

Man On Pink Corner (1089867) | about 4 years ago | (#33253246)

One of the reasons it took 20 years is that for most of that time, you had to be (or pay) both a hardcore software dev guy and a hardcore RF guy to even think about trying. Now, GNU Radio and other low-cost SDR platforms have largely taken care of the RF side. That is something that will remain true no matter what kind of obscure protocols the carriers adopt for their next generation phones.

Put another way, it's now just another software problem, and we all know how much that changes the development picture. Instead of 100 basement hackers around the world with the means to tackle problems like this, there are now 10,000,000.

New Famous Words? (1)

The Wild Norseman (1404891) | about 4 years ago | (#33251540)

'Herr Watson--hergekommen--Ich möchte Sie sehen.'

Mr Watson (1)

PPH (736903) | about 4 years ago | (#33251562)

Can you hear me now?

Unleash, the patent lawyers! (1)

gnarlin (696263) | about 4 years ago | (#33251590)

You can bet your sweet ass that ass soon ass this software stack gets stable and usable for normal people there will be swarms of lawyers from the big telecoms attacking this project.

Re:Unleash, the patent lawyers! (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 4 years ago | (#33251648)

The GSM spec was published 20 years ago, and will count as prior art to anything in it that wasn't patented before it was published, so it's unlikely that there are any patents outstanding in GSM...

GPL IS *NOT* "FREE SOFTWARE" !!! (0, Troll)

AlexLibman (785653) | about 4 years ago | (#33251882)

It's licensed [osmocom.org] under a copyLEFT, restrictive software license that places many limits on who can use it, where, and how. Only copy FREE [copyfree.org] and "public domain" software can logically be considered "free as in freedom"!

Re:GPL IS *NOT* "FREE SOFTWARE" !!! (1)

zeropointburn (975618) | about 4 years ago | (#33252260)

You mean the GPL? That would be free software for the end user, no restrictions. If you become a distributor, then there are certain reasonable restrictions. So long as you don't distribute the code, you can do anything else you want with it anywhere, any time. Certainly that doesn't qualify as 'many limits', nor does it even apply to the user.
  Users are better served by the GPL. Distributors (particularly commercial distributors) arguably are better served by BSD/Apache-like licenses such as you reference.

I would like to say: (1)

tigerbody1 (1268208) | about 4 years ago | (#33252070)

Congralations to the team!

Phreaking (2, Interesting)

uvajed_ekil (914487) | about 4 years ago | (#33255286)

A new era of phreaking is just around the corner, with commodity hardware, free software, and the will to continue to hack service networks. We're not there yet, but it is looking more and more like we may get there. Not a modern day equivalent of the good ol' blue box yet, but we'll keep trying.

Actuall call made? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33262440)

"He can actually make voice calls"

But did he actually make a call?
Or is this all theoretical?

(did not login, as I did that last time years ago, and would take me 1 hour to remember the username and 2 more to remember the password - otherwise I'm known as xerces8 or stein)

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>