Cut off from the Internet, young Cubans have quietly linked thousands of computers into a hidden network that stretches miles across Havana, letting them chat with friends, play games and download hit movies in a mini-replica of the online world that most can't access. [...]
A small minority have covertly engineered a partial solution by pooling funds to create a private network of more than 9,000 computers with small, inexpensive but powerful hidden Wi-Fi antennas and Ethernet cables strung over streets and rooftops spanning the entire city. Disconnected from the real Internet, the network is limited, local and built with equipment commercially available around the world, with no help from any outside government, organizers say.
"We aren't anonymous because the country has to know that this type of network exists. They have to protect the country and they know that 9,000 users can be put to any purpose," he said. "We don't mess with anybody. All we want to do is play games, share healthy ideas. We don't try to influence the government or what's happening in Cuba ... We do the right thing and they let us keep at it."