How exactly does an ISP connect you to the vast network of computers which is the internet?
In my area there are several ISP's. For example. Bell, Rogers, and Cogeco all connect you to the "same internet." Some services such as start.ca and Distributel piggyback on Bell, Rogers or Cogeco to give you the same Internet cheaper with fewer bells and whistles.
My question would be, how does Bell, Rogers or Cogeco, etc. connect you to the Internet, and is there any way to do this yourself possibly by installing a cell tower at your home or running cables from your home to connect to the same network these big wigs connect to?
I know there is currently a company that usually piggybacks who is setting up their own infrastructure in London, Ontario (start.ca) how would this be done? Could it theoretically be done for one household (if that person was willing to pay) for the infrastructure?
Any insight on this or how a big company is able to connect over the little guy (if that is the case) or how one would connect to the network without going through a company is welcome. Is there a central hub all of these companies connect through?
I want to get down to the nitty gritty of the situation, and any insight at all is welcome.