Technical

This page is a simple explanation but it is going to use technical words and some buzz-words. This page will walk you through the idea, the concepts, the technology used, and how it all comes together to form the Althea network. Althea is the software stack and network that makes the better internet possible; bringing Althea to New Hampshire is how The Block Network is creating the better internet.

You may want to head over to Althea.org and read their whitepaper, which explains the technology and mechanisms in more depth.

Abstract

The Althea network competes against Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to provide network access in a decentralized market-driven manner. Althea is best suited as a “last-mile” service to connect high-speed fiber-optic lines to your home and business. This is done following the Wireless Internet Service Provider (WISP) model of using terrestrial based (roofs and towers) WiFi radios to get the service to the building, then switching to ethernet cables to get the service into the building where it connects to an Althea router. The Althea router automates mesh links, price-based routing, encrypted tunnels, and payment. Every roof-top and tower is an opportunity. As more operators add to the network the competition creates a market of routing possibilities; the Althea software on each device chooses the best route at the best price and makes a payment.

The business models of current ISPs have some serious issues that the Althea network solves.

Status Quo

How We Change Everything

Althea is a revolution.

You were warned about the buzz-words. You might need our buzz-word glossary.

Althea is a software stack.

Althea builds off existing and cutting edge open-source projects. The routing software is based on OpenWRT. They have configured this distribution to use Babel routing algorithm to create mesh links on the ethernet ports. The concept then is to create the mesh topology using Point-to-Point (PTP) and Point-to-Multi-Point (PTMP). When a link is established the rest is automatic. Althea has modified the Babel routing algorithm to account for price and quality. This custom code is take into account prices advertised by other routers on the mesh network. The routing software will now automatically connect, configure, choose best value path, pay for traffic, and forward and charge for any traffic it should receive. Beyond the automated part a user will want to select an exit node, which is like selecting a VPN provider that also reports back if any other node lied about its quality. The user might also want to adjust the value slider, preferring cheaper or faster connections.

How does the routing software enable automatic payments?

The Althea routing software includes a cryptocurrency wallet. Users load coins or tokens onto the wallet. From there the software automatically makes payments. The system is extensible – any cryptocurrency could be added to the system.

IPv4 or IPv6?

The Althea network is IPv6 native. Each router gets a globally routable IPv6 address and the network can of course route internally.

The Althea network ends up creating a decentralized internet access market; something the world has never seen before.

Better people. Better internet.

What are you waiting for?

Here is the buzz-word glossary:

Internet: Local. Fast. Secure.