How Does 'MUTE' File Sharing Work?"

Author: mety Nagm Labels::

A. MUTE downloading anonymity works because it routes its signals the same way a colony of ants routes its worker insects: by constantly shifting the most efficient path, but no single insect is ever responsible for choosing that path. This is called a "mesh" model of computer networking.

In the words of its creator, Jason C. Rohrer, a young, talented programmer from New York state, MUTE is a "secure, anonymous, distributed communications framework. Node-to-node connections are encrypted, and messages are routed using an ant-inspired algorithm."

An Ant-Inspired Algorithm?

Ants tend to travel in fairly straight lines between their nest and a source of food. These also happen to be the shortest, most efficient routes.

As they wander around, they mark their routes with pheromones.

When they find food, they grab a piece of it and follow the pheromone trail back home. As they make the subsequent trips down the food path, they repeatedly scent the trail. This attracts more ants to follow the new trail and abandon the old "inefficient" ones.

The collectively intelligent behavior of ants it mimicked by the MUTE network nodes. MUTE nodes don't use pheromone markers. Instead, they send messages to "learn" which routes are the most efficient.

When a new node joins the mesh, it creates and maintains the connection to the neighbor nodes. These nodes, in turn, maintain connections to their neighbors.

The new node broadcasts a "request" message to its neighbors. If they don't have what is requested, they pass the request to their neighbors, and so on.

MUTE File Sharing uses "response timeouts" to detect "inefficient" routes and improve routing performance. If a node times out waiting for a response from another node, it resends the message with a fresh route request.

There is much more to the technical side of MUTE than this short explanation covers. If you are a techie-oriented type, you may enjoy some quite fascinating details of MUTE's operation here:

http://mute-net.sourceforge.net/technicalDetails.shtml

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