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A guy that I met in college built his own parabolic wifi dish and was able to get connections from all over the place, especially when he bounced the signal off of the water tower across the street from his house. He was an internet pirate and surfed on other people unencrypted connections. The time I was over, using Net Stumbler he had access to something like 65 unsecured wireless networks. One of them was the one located by my school that I could connect to on my PDA . Don't know what the distance was as the crow flies, but in terms of driving, this guys house was 18 miles away from the ITT campus according to MapQuest.

As far as I know the record is still 125 miles.

http://www.engadget.com/2005/11/15/how-to-build-a-wifi-biquad-dish-antenna/

This is pretty interesting stuff, never had the time to do any of it myself, the guy is a HAM radio operation and has a wealth of knowledge when it came to frequencies and all that.
 
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