When Tropical Cyclone Debbie hit Queensland last week, one of the casualties was the region’s mobile phone network. Phone towers can stop working because they have been damaged by the wind, or because they have run out of diesel to run their generators.
Whatever the cause, the end result is the same: a number of people will find their mobile phones not connected to the network, leaving them without communications for an extended period of time. Here's how to stay connected in times of need.
It’s not just tropical cyclones that can affect mobile communications. Bushfires and other disasters can also lead to a break in the network.
This loss of communication is extremely isolating, and potentially very dangerous. Whether it’s the inability to call an ambulance or the absence of regular safety warnings, a lack of communications can be life-threatening.
The sensation of being cut off from the rest of the world also brings with it a danger of a different kind. Severe isolation can cause concern for our loved ones. This very human problem is what led me to start my research in this area.
So how can we let people communicate using their mobile phones, when the phone network isn’t available?
All about networking
For nationwide communications, you really do need phone towers and their supporting infrastructure. There currently just aren’t any good alternative solutions to providing communications on such a large scale.
But if you change the scope of the solution to focus more on internal communications within smaller communities, alternatives suddenly begin to present themselves.
Click Frenzy - AKA Australia's answer to Black Friday - officially begins at 7pm tonight. However, a bunch of retailers have jumped the gun early, just like they do every year. Here are the best deals so far, with links to buy!
Click Frenzy refreshes onto browsers Australia wide on Tuesday evening and just like previous years, there will be ridiculous prices everywhere. From 7pm tomorrow night until midnight Wednesday 22 May 2019, thousands of products from hundreds of retailers will be heavily discounted. Here's how you can nab the big ticket items.