You are planning a vacation. You estimate that you will need $1000 dollars to pay for the hotels, restaurants, food etc. You start your vacation and watch the money get spent at each stop. When you get home, you pat yourself on the back for a job well done because you still have $50 left in your wallet. We do something similar with communication links, called creating a link budget. The traveler is the signal and instead of dollars it starts out with power. It spends its power (or attenuates, in engineering terminology) as it travels, be it wired or wireless. Just as you can use a credit card along the way for extra money infusion, the signal can get extra power infusion along the way from intermediate amplifiers such as microwave repeaters for telephone links or from satellite transponders for satellite links. The designer hopes that the signal will complete its trip with just enough power to be decoded at the receiver with the desired signal quality.