Documentation of the last event

Event page: fuck5g

Whiteboard (full size):



5G on the Internet looks blue:



Who? Why? Where?

Health concerns

Security concerns



Versions of the protocols suite are defined in Releases, which have a fixed release schedule: The current release is Rel-16, which completes the system and brings some futuristic features. It is stored in a weird format on the messay 3GPP FTP server: → Maxigas is trying to compile the information there into a more usable format.

More about specifications and releases here:

  • IEEE Spectrum article on the exciting new features in the last protocol specifications released this year: 5G just got weird

The full Rel-16 (latest version) is around 54 million words, so it is a good dataset for statistical analysis, distant reading, datamining, etc.

Here is a wordcloud of the Rel-16 specs:


Software related to 5g networks

Open Networking

Open Air Interface

OpenAirInterface (OAI) currently provides a standard-compliant implementation under a GNU GPLv3 license of a subset of Release 10 LTE for terminal (UE), basestation (eNodeB), and core network (EPC - MME, HSS, SGw and PGw) on standard Linux-based computing equipment


Open-source LTE software radio suite developed by Software Radio Systems (SRS).

Fraunhofher 5G core implementation aimed at research testbeds.



Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWAN) for the Internet of Things

LPWAN is for short sessions, few per hour, low bandwidth, super long battery life:

Energy consumption / Sustainability arguments pro and against:


Foreground reading:

Background reading:


Possible ways to shape the future of the 5G usage:

Socio-political AND Governance

2020-04-17 Article19’s input to BEREC on Electronic communications & protecting human rights &

“With regard to 5G, we stressed that allocating local licenses for spectrum can allow more verticals-uses, boost innovation and lead to better quality and more choices, and we suggested BEREC to support this trend. In addition, we repeated our call for regulatory authorities within the EU to better follow the work of standard setting organisations, as we are conscious of the impact that technical standards can have on end users’ human rights.”

2019 Article19’s input to BEREC: on the interplay between 5G deployment and regulation.

[[][Bilateral investment treaties]] - given that countries not in the Global North will likely depend in some cases upon foreign direct investment to deploy 5g technologies, it is likely that if there is subsequently resistance to 5g deployment these treaties will come into application.

Technology AND Socio-political consequences

2020-01-19 : The Register: EU’s 5G security rules


in 23 languages!!!

2019-12-29 The Nationalist Battle Over 5G

2020-04-27 “5G in less connected countries” & a webinar by Rhizomatica about African context

24 Jan 2019 : Civil society activism, strategic alignment and international public policy making for spectrum


Huawei ousted from heart of EU as Nokia wins Belgian 5G contracts - 9 Oct 2020

subjects to discuss for (a) next time

  • How did the shift from racks of heterogenous servers owned by different parties vs warehouses full of homogenous servers owned by a few big parties happened, and how could this change?
  • take the subject broader, talk about how networks developed, the cloud, and how 5g is about applying techniques / ideas from cloud / internet on mobile networks
  • integrating networks like tetra in 5g network, slicing, integration of iot networks
  • talk about the shift to commodity (as in, standard interfaces, multiple suppliers, integration software diy or thirth party) hardware
  • Software Defined Networking or, centralized routing, and maxing out links
  • Calling computers Cattle vs Pets
  • Can ideas from this world be applied on things that we can build ourselves?
  • Can the same technologies /principles of operation work (how?) in a world where networks / computing facilities are community owned vs a few huge entities
  • Energy Efficiency
  • Operations efficiency
  • Edge Computing
  • Where does the whole china story come from?, it seems that there is multiple free software implementations of a 5g Core network.
  • How much do operators (the ones that own the radio's) operate and develop their own network?


Do we want to attempt to build ourselves a (mini) 5g infrastructure to understand what it is composed of and to see if this technology can be recuperated? Or would this be a waste of our time?

Is there a sustainable way to build our own networks, that can actually be used by people?

What techniques / concepts (on the operation of computers / networks) can be reappropriated to use in our own projects?

how to DIY a mobile phone network

How to build a mini network (1 base station) to just play around with the stuff, and then be able to connect a standard mobile phone to your own lte / 5g network.

  • DECT guardband is free to use in the netherlands
  • limesdr should prob. work as a Radio, and cost arounc 300$
  • It seems that there is free sofware for all parts of the network (look at the Software section of this page), is it complete?

Field trips

Field Trip 0 (Lag Field Trip 2.5): Rietveld Academie

Open Street Map showing two mobile antennas (which are in fact one → should be fixed on the map…)

Antenna Register of the Netherlands Showing three 5G NR antennas, 24.5m, 773Mhz (this frequency was auctioned in 2020 for 5G in the Netherlands), 26.2 dBW, one 40 gr, one 190 gr and another 300 gr – so I guess they should be different sizes.

Photos from the rooftop of the Rietveld Academie

Photos from the rooftop of the Rietveld Academie (alternative download link)

This 5G antenna in the official antenna register of the Netherlands (screenshot)


Photos of 5G antennas from the Internet (for visual recognition and comparison, i.e. educational use):

052419TB 5Gpushback-small.jpg


6-200 200M  Receiver with Panel Antenna 02-small.jpg


panel antenna front angle 02-small.jpg

Small cell antenna Eugene-small.jpg