It was bound to happen sooner than later: curious Wii owners with some technical ability are digging into the Wii to see how the Wii Shop Channel functions. Not so surprisingly the whole Shop experience uses a modified version of the Opera web browser to access files on a web server somewhere out in Nintendo's domain. Curious folks can use a web browser to peek at the channel from the comfort of one's own computer, but you'll be unable to buy anything (duh) or make use of the available files beyond simply looking at them. But hey, hacking has to start somewhere.
As soon as I fired up the network connection, the Wii wanted to update itself. Packet sniffer got a ton of logs for System Update (16MB+). Then sniffed Wii News/Shop channels (browsing/etc). UPDATE: I've been sniffing everything from adding Wii Points, to downloading VC games, to redeeming Wii points with a used Wiicard. Lots of sniffer logs.
I'm betting Nintendo will find a way to keep curious people from poking around in Wii World where they don't belong. It may be only a matter of time until someone cracks the Shop wide open via PC, allowing folks to acquire all sorts of things Nintendo would rather not make available in such a manner.