Project to bring OsmocomBB freedom to Android
I just wanted to put this on your radar. You probably have heard of the Catcher Catcher that utilizes OsmoComBB:
Well now there is a project to bring that functionality to Android:
If this project were to succeed and merge with Replicant, imagine how free it would be! Richard Stallman might even buy one at that point.
Of course, we're aware of the OsomocomBB project. However, it currently only supports very old feature phones (that don't have an application CPU, but only a modem) and also requires a computer to run layer2/3 on. Hence it's nowhere near ready to be integrated with Replicant. We're really looking forward to having OsmocomBB supporting the XMM6160/XMM6260 modems that are found in most Samsung Replicant-supported devices.
As for RMS, I'm still skeptical he'd use one: the mobile telephony operator could still track your every move, even with such a device!
If you haven't watched the video above, you should check it out. Here's the direct link to it on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/embed/_lw2LmJyxOQ
They explain that when you have complete control over what information you send to cell towers, you can tell all the towers how far away you are from them, and thus be able to not be triangulated.
Here's the forum that the ISMI Catcher detecter app: http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1422969
They state that one of their goals is, "Compile OsmocomBB for an Android phone, so that it can be used as a USB host. (Preferably for one of the more popular models like the Samsung galaxy S)". That sounds cool.
I don't know if this app will do everything that OsmoComBB does, but perhaps it will allow people to spoof cell towers also. For sure it will tell people if they are being tracked. It's cool that the GuardianProject and EFF are supporting their work. I'm excited to install Replicant 4.2 and will be even more excited when I can download their app when they are finished from F-Droid. If the regular OsmocomBB people support the XMM6160/XMM6260 before this group does, that'd be cool too. Perhaps some day RML can get a "free as in freedom" cell-phone. Merging these two awesome projects will move things along quite well.
Also, I want to say thanks for adding SSL to your website. Can you change the links in email notifications to HTTPS links so that I can just click on them and then log in and reply? Or is there a way that I can change this setting myself?
Lastly, what is the best thing to study if I someday would like to help develop this project? I'm a bit of a n00b currently. Would I start by learning a programming language of some kind or something else? Keep up the great work! Any plans to add a micro-blog at some point? If you get a Twitter and/or GNUsocial account, I will read and promote it a lot.
Obviously, I am quite aware of OsmocomBB. I am unsure about the triangulation argument, since it can be accomplished anyways by comparing the time of arrival of the phone's signal at different towers.
It would be could if people could port OsmocomBB to the XMM6160/XMM6260, but I'm doubtful this will happen in the near future.
Perhaps some day RML can get a "free as in freedom" cell-phone
I suppose you meant RMS. He's opposed to using a cell-phone not only because most of them are running proprietary software, but also because the operators can track their users, by design. However, having a free software baseband operating system running on Replicant-supported phones would solve a huge part of the issues we currently have with mobile telephony.
We're working with OSUOSL to automatically redirect the login page to HTTPS, as this was done on the blog. One could also add support for replicant.us on HTTPS everywhere.
Lastly, what is the best thing to study if I someday would like to help develop this project? I'm a bit of a n00b currently. Would I start by learning a programming language of some kind or something else? Keep up the great work!
We're mostly in need of developers. See the list of available Tasks, our Developer Guide as well as the Replicant 4.0 porting guide for more relevant infos! A financial contribution to our project is also welcome at all times :)
Any plans to add a micro-blog at some point? If you get a Twitter and/or GNUsocial account, I will read and promote it a lot.
Not really. I used to use StatusNet when it was still a thing and posted Replicant updates there, but I kinda gave up on the whole "social networks" side of communication. These things are also time-hungry!
Hi Kurtis and Paul,
I'm the founder of the Android IMSI-Catcher Detector (AIMSICD), and
considerable progress have been made for Qualcomm based devices,
but none for the XMM/xgold series. At this point we're stuck, since
we're not able to get any communication with the modem, from a local
shell or java socket code, which our App currently depend on.
We would love to try to replace the stock or ROM based Samsung RIL Socket
with Replicant. (Is there a way to do this manually?) Or better, use as
an add-on interface, preferably providing the AT or RF debug output, that
we so much need.
It's cool that the GuardianProject and EFF are supporting their work.
Unfortunately, we're not yet supported by them. We've contacted them,
but with no positive response so far. However, I am sure that once we have
a functional beta of the AIMSICD, they will get back to us.
This is an Open project and developers are needed.
We would love to try to replace the stock or ROM based Samsung RIL Socket with Replicant. (Is there a way to do this manually?) Or better, use as an add-on interface, preferably providing the AT or RF debug output, that we so much need.
Please describe more specifically what you're trying to do. The Replicant Samsung-RIL uses an internal Samsung RIL Socket for communication with e.g. the audio module, but that's totally unrelated to the sockets the proprietary RIL is using. If you wish to communicate with the proprietary RIL, I doubt you'll find much help about it here. On the other hand, if you're interested in working with Samsung-RIL or directly the Samsung IPC protocol, here is a good place to ask details.