I was reading the arcane archer class because of another post, and while reading the abilities it kept referring to using them "within range". How do they define within range? Clearly the weapon focus feat longbow or shortbow should get us close to the answer. But does it mean with no range penalties for that bow, or one range penalties,...? Ideally I would like to know for pathfinder but I expect the same question exists for 3.x as well.
All ranged weapons have a maximum range; beyond this, targets are out of range, and within, they are in range. That is what the arcane archer is referring to. And yes, it is the same in 3.5 and Pathfinder.
The maximum range for a thrown weapon is five range increments. For projectile weapons, it is 10 range increments. Some ranged weapons have shorter maximum ranges, as specified in their descriptions.