Originally Posted by ThereBePirates
I am assuming you are connecting to wireless networks in marinas or do you have a global network (mesh network) in the US which you can connect to?
Or maybe you are hacking into other peoples?
I've thought about this a bit. There are hacking tools to break the encryption used to encrypt/protect wifii, but I don't use them. It just seems wrong. If someone is encrypting their wifi it's a sign that they don't want anyone using it.
In the summer, I have permission from the marina 3/4 miles away. In the winter, our marina includes their controlled access to any customer staying the winter.
I am also an Optimum/Cablevision customer at home which gives me access to their network of WiFi access points -- some of these access points are within reach of my long range wifi. It is also controlled access, they provide me with a password.
I also know several of the businesses/marinas in the area with wifi. If I asked, they wouldn't mind. (Don't need the connection though.) I find that if you ask nicely, that people don't mind. If in doubt, bring a bottle of wine when you ask. I would think if you buy diesel or gas there, they will let you connect -- and probably be amazed that you are the first one to ask.
Other marinas have a pay-for-service system in place. In a pinch I could pony-up and use theirs.
At home I keep the wifi unencrypted in case anyone needs a connection when they are nearby. Perhaps other home owners are doing something similar. Regardless, I'm subscribed to the backbone that is usually used in homes on Long Island (optimum/cablevision). I find that there's little reason to connect to homes, and homes usually have antennas inside, and perhaps on the wrong side of the house.
Right now, the marinas (that I have permission from) provide me all the bandwidth I need. But I wouldn't be opposed to lightly* using someone else's open connection, since that's what I do for others too. (*Lightly meaning not in a way that would affect them.)