This is such a neat idea.
A gadget which plugs into your computer and re-broadcasts for free the WiFi account that you’re paying to use. Now I know a lot of enraged suburbanites who would gawp at this kind of anarchistic generosity, but when you think about it, the guys who invented this device do rather have a point…
The ultimate goal with the Wifi Liberator project is through Open Source distribution, to eventually reach a high enough usage and penetration rate that all pay-per-use wireless networks will begin to free their access to everyone. Since the monetary amounts associated with providing wireless access is inexpensive as the techology becomes more ubiquitous, the need to “charge” for this access is becoming less important and cost effective. Although we are still charged for basic utilities such as water, electricity, gas, and others, the amounts associated with providing internet access are dropping at an exponential rate. This project aims to make this low cost apparent as well as the increasing tensions of keeping people “out” of these networks.
Of course, most paid WiFi access tends to be in large public buildings like hotels or airport lounges, or perhaps in the smaller urban social spaces of coffee houses and bars. Not really a suburban issue, perhaps? Well, it’s an interesting project nonetheless, and I do like the idea of encouraging the sharing of your bandwidth wealth, rather than encouraging fear of your neighbours and what they might do with your precious info-pipes.