|"At a lavish press conference today attended by mainstream and technical media alike, Bob Page unveiled Page Industries (NASDAQ:PAGI) newest technological achievement, "Aquinas." Rumored to have been in development for almost five years at a cost of over a billion credits, Aquinas is a seamless, transparent replacement for the current patch of Net protocols that promises to radically expand bandwidth without the need for new hardware.
"Aquinas is the result of over five hundred man-years of effort on the part of some of the most talented and driven people in the industry," Page said at the conference. "We're grateful to the NSA and the Hague Commission on Secure Communications for trusting Page Industries with the responsibility for this technological milestone. As of noon today you can expect nearly all of the world's net traffic to be carried by Aquinas. Bandwidth is now, for all intents and purposes, free."
The remainder of the conference involved presentations by the leaders of the carriers allied with Page Industries, and a technical discussion of the Aquinas protocol -- named after the titular Thomas Aquinas, whose philosophy is a well-known passion for Bob Page."
|- APR, a financial magazine possibly named after the term Annual Percentage Rate|
The Aquinas Protocol is an internet protocol developed by Page Industries on behalf of Majestic 12 as the next generation successor to the Echelon system, after apparently 5 years and a billion credits. Released recently before the start of Deus Ex, Aquinas was publicly known as a philanthropic effort to make the internet a better place, but in reality was a brilliant tool that allowed Majestic 12 clandestine surveillance over the internet, which had been a place of relative freedom compared to most countries in the real world. It is named after Thomas Aquinas, role model to Bob Page and widely thought of as one of the best Christian philosophers; this is referenced in the intro, where Page describes a Helios-controlled future as the realisation of Thomas' mythical "City on the Hill".
Although in the past, sites had to be hosted privately on a physical system, after the invention of Aquinas anyone could host whatever they wanted at no cost (unbeknownst to the public, anyone using it is also subject to MJ12 scrutiny). Although normally, the NSA and 'Hague Commission' would not allow this, they were likely bribed into agreeing.
In the end of the game, at Area 51, the Aquinas Hub is apparently where Helios is located, and the chamber where JC Denton and Helios merge is located at the top of the Hub. This hub is likely the servers that Aquinas is located on.
After the failed merge with Helios, the Aquinas protocol was destroyed, resulting in a mass information crisis and a 20-year long economic recession known as the Collapse. In Deus Ex: Invisible War, the remaining damaged protocol plays a major part: whoever can get access to the damaged protocol (located in the former UNATCO HQ on Liberty Island) will have the resources to take over the weakened Post-Collapse world. JC Denton/Helios uses the protocol to distribute perfected Nano-augmentations worldwide, successfully creating a posthuman civilization, the Illuminati use it to reestablish their world economic and political dominance, and the Knights Templar use it to distribute a nanite-destroying virus worldwide, ending nano-augmentation forever. If Alex Denton does not upload Aquinas to anyone, the world will descend into centuries of violence, evolving the human race with the Omar emerging victorious on a war-scarred Earth, perfectly adapted to expand humanity throughout the cosmos.