Testing Now - DataPost

About DataPost

Deliver and pickup emails to and from your RACHEL device

DataPost is an "alpha" project of World Possible to enable communication and data reporting to and from your completely offline RACHEL devices. This software allows you to send and receive emails to and from users on your RACHEL device. It works just like the post office though, so don't expect any immediate communication to happen.

This is in the very early stages of development. The name of the service has also changed a few times and probably will again. Please be patient when using this tool.

What it Does

DataPost enables the collection of usage data and transmission of e-mails to and from RACHEL-Plus devices without plugging RACHEL itself into Internet access. The DataPost service is easy to use by anyone in the field. The DataPost service only requires that someone connect to RACHEL with a newer Android phone, operate the DataPost app, and return with their phone to an internet connection to complete the transfer of Data.

Outgoing Mail:

DataPost allows us to easily gather usage data and emails from RACHEL users. RACHEL devices are assumed to never be on the internet. To enable to the collection of data from RACHEL we use RACHEL like a mailbox. Users of RACHEL can send e-mails to anyone on the planet with an e-mail address. When the RACHEL user sends that e-mail though, it just gets stored in the "outgoing" folder of RACHEL. We also automate an outgoing e-mail so that every night an e-mail with anonymous usage data is sent to World Possible.

Incoming Mail:

Every RACHEL-Plus distributed by World Possible from August 5th on includes a DataPost web address. You can send emails from any regular e-mail account to any of the pre-configured recipient accounts on your RACHEL device. The e-mail addresses on the RACHEL device are preconfigured as:

  • user1@xyz123.datapost.site, user2@xyz123.datapost.site, user3@xyz123.datapost.site however xyz123 will be different for each RACHEL.

All e-mails sent to those user accounts will be stored in an "outgoing" folder of our online portal.

Couriers:

With "bundles" of emails now sitting both on RACHEL and our online portal, we just need a volunteer near the deployment site to transit the bundles between the two locations. Again, the first location is RACHEL and the second location is literally anywhere the courier can get a decent internet connection. Going back and forth, the courier will be carrying a payload of data. When they reach either destination they drop off that payload and "POOF" e-mails appear for the receiving party right into their regular inbox.

RACHEL Usage Data

Ever wonder if your RACHEL is being used? How often?

What content is being accessed?

Our favorite feature of DataPost is that the service will provide usage data of your RACHEL device. When you have a courier pick up a "bundle" from RACHEL, that bundle will automatically include a usage log of your RACHEL device. That log will be delivered to World Possible where we can provide you summary (non-individualized) data on what is being accessed and how frequently on your device.

Two-Way Communication

Ever wonder how your students are doing?

Did you make connections you wanted to keep when setting up your RACHEL?

DataPost will allow you to send and recieve e-mails from your users on the ground without ever providing a direct internet connection to your RACHEL device. Yes, you will need a courier who can pick up and deliver the mail, but this means your RACHEL can be in the most remote part of the world and anyone who visits can bring them a digital bundle of mail!

Getting Started

Requirements

  • You must have patience that you will experience hiccups and issues during this early time with DataPost

  • You must have a RACHEL Plus 3.0 device from World Possible ordered after September 1st, 2020 (we currently cannot update older devices)

  • You must have a DataPost sticker on the front of your RACHEL device with your DataPost email address domain

  • You must have an Android Phone with Android 9.0 or more recent

  • You must have someone who is either at your deployment site, or travels there, who also can access the Internet from their Android phone

  • The individual or individuals who you trust to pick up and deliver your data must download the DataPost app and install it on their phone

    1. They can download the DataPost app here: http://rachelfriends.org/downloads/public_ftp/DataPost/datapost-debug.apk

    2. After downloading the app, they must login with a Google account - that first login will register the user in our Database

    3. After your selected courier(s) have logged in to the DataPost app with a Google account, we can grant them access to your RACHEL devices

    4. Please fill out this form to grant them access. You will receive an e-mail confirmation within 48 hours after access has been granted


Usage

RACHEL users sending e-mails out

  • When your users are connected to RACHEL, they will see a new link on the RACHEL homepage called "WEBMAIL"

  • After clicking on WEBMAIL, users will be asked to enter a username and password.

    • We currently create users 1 -25 with usernames: user1, user2, ... user10

    • The default password is the word password

  • We currently do not support the ability to change user names or passwords, or to create additional users, or to change user names.

  • Once logged in, users can send e-mail to anyone in the world they would like to.

  • Once e-mails are sent, they will be bundled with all other waiting to be sent e-mails for courier pickup. They will not be delivered until a courier has picked up a bundle of e-mails from RACHEL and delivered that bundle to the internet using the DataPost app.

Sending e-mails to RACHEL users

  • There is no difference in sending e-mails to RACHEL users (user1@12ab34.datapost.site) as there is sending e-mail to your friends around the world, except these e-mails will not get to there destination right away. These e-mails all stay in a big bundle online, until your selected courier with proper permissions picks the bundle up with the DataPost app and physically brings their phone the RACHEL device to offload the bundle

Being a DataPost Courier

  • DataPost depends on assigned couriers picking up data from internet -> DataPost app -> RACHEL and back from RACHEL -> DataPost app -> internet just like the postal service

  • If you are going to be a courier, you need an Android phone with Android 9.0 or later, a Google account, and the DataPost app -- see Getting Started above

  • You must have permission to download bundles from the internet -> DataPost app in order to deliver e-mails to RACHEL. Anyone can pick up e-mails from RACHEL and deliver them to the internet. We require permission to pickup e-mails because if you do not deliver the e-mails, they are lost.

Pick up e-mails bundles from the Internet to deliver to RACHEL

  • As mentioned before, you must have been granted permission to pick up RACHEL bundles for each RACHEL device you plan to deliver data to

  • You must be on the Internet when you download a bundle

  • Login to the app -> Press the sync with Internet button -> Choose the bundles you wish to download -> travel to RACHEL -> connect to RACHEL -> press sync with RACHEL button on the app

  • Note: Do not download bundles you do not plan to deliver. Only one person can download a bundle. If you download a bundle, you cannot "return" it to the server, you must complete the delivery or the recipients will never get those e-mails

Download the app to your phone and Login



Pick up e-mails bundles from RACHEL to deliver to the Internet

  • Anyone can pick up bundles from RACHEL to deliver to the Internet if they have the DataPost app

  • You must be going to a place where there is Internet to ultimately deliver the bundle

  • Connect to the RACHEL WiFi signal -> Open the DataPost app -> Press the sync with RACHEL button -> Go to an Internet connection -> connect to the internet -> Press the sync with Internet button

  • Note: Do not download bundles you do not plan to deliver. Only one person can download a bundle. If you download a bundle, you cannot "return" it to the server, you must complete the delivery or the recipients will never get those e-mails

Usage Data

  • Currently, whenever e-mail budnles are picked up from RACHEL and delivered to the Internet, a usage log is also sent to World Possible from the device.

  • The usage log collects the same type of data a normal web server collects, nothing specific to any individuals, but a general log of what has been visited, by what type of device, how many times

  • We plan to make this data avaialble more broadly to end users who may have sponsored a RACHEL device deployment so you can view your device(s) usage by deployment location, as well as to content partners so they can get a sense of where their content is being used

  • This feature is under development