Intel has developed a means of transmitting Wi-Fi over a distance of 60 miles, making it possible to bring the internet to people living in the sticks. The technology, dubbed the "Rural Connectivity Platform" (RCP) consists of a processor, radios, specialized software, and an antenna that can crank out data rates of about 6.5 megabits per second.
Even though the Wi-Fi has been tested at 60 miles, it will be necessary to spread out access points every 30 miles from the main antenna to ensure a quality signal. Still, each RCP device costs only $500, which means you could put together an entire end-to-end system for around $1000. Plus, the radios consume very little power, making it possible to run them on solar energy. It sounds great, but one has to wonder if there would be interference problems (and whether or not this newfangled software solution can overcome them). My guess is that it is probably not something that could be utilized outside of a rural setting. [Technology Review]