We've had a wireless network at home for over 3.5 years, and I've had a wireless-equipped PowerBook for almost two years. In all that time, I've never managed to get the laptop to work wirelessly from anyplace actually useful. This is a generic failing of the Titanium PowerBooks--their wireless antenna is inside of a big, titanium faraday cage, leaving them with a frustratingly short range. So, I haven't been able to use the laptop from the living room couch, or from the bedroom. Instead, I've been limited to 30 or so feet, which draws the line somewhere in the middle of the dining room.

Until today. A couple weeks ago our second wireless access point died. It was a cheap (at the time) SMC, which replaced the original Apple "UFO" base station which basically melted itself down. I was faced with a dilemma--I could buy a high-power wireless card and antenna, plug it all into one of my Linux boxes, and then run HostAP, or I could buy another cheap AP. In the end, I decided that it was better to have a working network now then to wait for the HostAP hardware to arrive via FedEX, so we bought a Linksys WRT54G. The nice thing about this specific model is that it runs Linux under the hood, and there are a few hacked firmware loads for it that give it a number of features that Linksys never planned on. Including the ability to crank the transmitter power from a wimpy (but common) 30 mW up to 84 mW. It's not the 200 mW that high-end stuff can handle, but it's good enough to finally let me sit on the couch and use the computer. It only took two years.