Using an Ikea Strainer to Boost WiFi While Traveling

Using an Ikea Strainer to Boost WiFi While Traveling

Range Govindan
Jun 30, 2009

When you are traveling in other countries, you become reliant on free WiFi hotspots. No one wants to use their credit card to get access to the internet. Since multiple WiFi networks can permeate the air, it seems logical to think that there is a way to access many and therefore getting onto the internet. Some of the major airports offer free WiFi, but we've noticed more than a few that just offer a free 30 minutes.

When you are stuck in a foreign country and don't know exactly where to find an internet connection, or you've just gotten tired of always having to get a coffee in order to browse peacefully, this may be a way solve the age old problem of getting a free and decent internet connection. The internet has become the modern way of staying connected. You can chat, talk, video chat and more thanks to it. What you are basically doing is amplifying an existing connection so that your computer can read it. For this to work, you need to have an external WiFi adapter. You can't be using your computer's. These things are usually easy to get and plug into a USB port.

This idea comes from an enterprising young man studying abroad in Russia. He has turned an Ikea strainer into a Wi-Fi super antenna, using little more than a strainer, a marker and Scotch tape.

But, how did he do it? It sounds ridiculously simple. He mentions that parabolic kitchenware is well known as a DIY directional antenna dish, with which you can augment weak signals thanks to the use of a receiver of some sort. He used some scotch tape and a marker to mount his USB WiFi receiver. He mounted the receiver as close to the apex of the strainer as possible. After he'd fiddled around with it a bit, he went from seeing three WiFi networks to seeing a whole bunch of them. The only problem was maintaining the dish just in the right position so that you remained connected, but that can always be hacked as well.

You don't really need an Ikea strainer, just a strainer of some sort. We suggest going to the nearest discount store. [via IkeaHacker, images by Worth]

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