CUWiN -- the Champaign-Urbana Community Wireless Network -- just announced that they've received an NSF grant to continue developing their open source technologies for wireless mesh networking.
CUWiN's mission is twofold: their first goal is to build non-profit wireless broadband networks, to bring high-speed Internet to everybody -- building on the belief that the Internet is the great equalizer of this century. Think low-income residents, developing nations, and disaster victims. People who would benefit from the Internet, but can't get it.
Thus, they've got a bunch of kernel hackers to build open-source wireless mesh routers. They're on the cutting edge of research & development into mesh networks -- and somehow they're quietly hidden in the middle of a cornfield.
I trust that this grant will allow CUWiN to continue both developing their technologies and expanding their social mission. I'm both humbled and proud that Sascha and the rest of these guys are in C-U.