A group of computer programmers and hackers in Austria is creating a low-cost way of spreading Internet access across communities. "FunkFeuer" which stands for "radio beacon" in German, uses everyday technology to create a wireless network, called a "mesh," that can transmit data from person to person, without involving companies or governments.
We have a similar thing taking off in Italy, first Wi-Fi backbone has been established in Cerveteri, close to Rome, and is programmed to be extended to some of Rome city and then to other places in Italy.
We are organized as a cooperative, a bit different from the Funkfeuer people who, I believe, are a more loose association of hackers and tech lovers.
It is good to see this finally taking off. Connectivity around the edges of the internet is growing.