A Wi-Fi network's range is limited by the transmission power, antenna type, and environmental obstacles (i.e. trees). So, if you're out in the boonies where the signal is spotty, you may be SOL. Unless, of course, there's a baking pan handy.
Silicon.com's Peter Cochrane uncovered this interesting trick while cruising the Norfolk Broads aboard a yacht. When both of his connected devices showed a single bar each of 2.5G and Wi-Fi, he employed a "much-used baking tray" to boost the signal. He reportedly achieved 3 bars for each service by placing the pan nearby to act like the parabolic dish on an antenna. He located the 2.5G signal station and situated the pan to reflect more transmissions towards his Wi-Fi/2.5G dongle.
I wasn't able to independently confirm that this works in the 10 minutes or so I tried, but there doesn't seem to be any reason why it wouldn't work. If this or a similar home-brew system has worked for you—like the Tinfoil-in-an-envelope-under-an-MBP trick—let us know in the comments. [Silicon.com]