If you're interested in "getting your hands dirty" with Arduino and WiFi - but not keen on the price of the full shield, then a powerful option has just become more feasible with Chris Magagna's new Arduino library for the Texas Instruments CC3000 WiFi chipsets. Although a first release it should make working with these powerful WiFi parts somewhat easier (and cheaper) for your next wirelessly-connected or Arduino-powered "Internet of Things" device. Note that the CC3000 isn't 5V compatible however the use of a level shifter (below) will solve the problem.
If you're going to interface your Beaglebone or other 3.3V development board with an Arduino or other 5V system - you'll need to interface the GPIO pins with different voltages. When you're faced with this situation - don't panic! Make sure you have some of our LEVEL: bidirectional 5V-3.3V level converters in stock. For more information and to order, click here.