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Free Public Wifi explained

David Pogue points to a TechBlog post that explains why we keep seeing “Free Public Wifi” listed on available wifi networks. No, it’s not a fraud. No, it’s not a hoax. Yes, it is maybe the stupidest Windows thing ever. As TechBlog says, it’s viral without being a virus. Or, maybe it’s a virus that is all symptom.

In any case, I’m glad to have this clarified at last.

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8 Responses to “Free Public Wifi explained”

  1. OK, I ventured an explanation that should make it easily understandable:

    http://billkosloskymd.typepad.com/wirelessdoc/2008/01/free-public-wi.html

  2. [...] Free Public Wifi explained [...]

  3. And this, I think, explains one of my most embarrassing moments. At Emerging Tech 4-5 years ago, someone had set up an ad hoc network with the same name as the real one. It was interfering with the real one, so the organizers repeatedly asked whoever had set up the ad hoc network to shut it down. The culprit turned out to be …. me. But I knew that I had not set up an ad hoc network, much less set one up and name it the same as the conference network. All I did was open my laptop and click on one of the ones that had the official conference name … which must have been an ad hoc network someone else set up. I then became the “carrier.” Ack.

    It was humiliating.

  4. when i keep clicking the refresh button the signal changes ( i’m not good at wifi tech.) does that mean that the “Free Public Wifi” is definitely a fake?

  5. [...] post explains something else: At Emerging Tech 4-5 years ago, someone had set up an ad hoc network with [...]

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