Talk of gathering clouds is usually an ominous portent, but Gather Cloud presents a much brighter prospect. Despite what its nomenclature may suggest, Gather Network’s decentralized cloud computing service has been hailed as an affordable way for enterprises to leverage their existing machines for repurposing already available compute power. Before we consider how Gather Cloud fulfills this promise, it’s first necessary to examine the problems with centralized cloud systems today.
Cloud Computing Isn’t Cheap
When cloud computing burst onto the scene less than two decades ago, it was touted as a cheap solution for businesses burdened with the cost of maintaining local storage for company files and purchasing multiple software licenses. By provisioning storage to the cloud – vast warehouses of third-party servers – enterprises were able to dramatically drive down both hardware and software costs.
But as so often happens with emerging technologies, for every problem solved, a new one is created. Cloud computing has essentially become a victim of its own success in that businesses are now so reliant upon it, they are hamstrung when it becomes unavailable – while the evolving nature of computational demands has driven spiraling costs.
Although storing intercompany files in the cloud is still inexpensive, that’s not how businesses are using the cloud today. Increasingly, cloud computing is being utilized for processing massive amounts of data. While businesses can now access a wealth of computational power, such riches don’t come cheap. Small businesses are effectively priced out of accessing this resource, while enterprises are seeing an increasing amount of their budget eaten up by cloud costs.
Cut-Price Computing on Demand
The servers that Amazon and Google lease to enterprises on demand are essentially networked devices chained together to provide vast amounts of processing power. In structure, they are simply souped-up versions of the networked devices we hold in our hands and have scattered around our homes. Chain enough of these consumer devices together to harness their idle processing power, and you could create a supercomputer capable of rivaling the leading cloud providers.
Web3 engineers have long been aware of this capability, and decentralized proponents have been endeavoring for years to spin up a workable distributed cloud computing framework. The case for building a decentralized cloud is compelling, not just in terms of driving down costs at the point of access, but also in providing an always-on and censorship-resistant solution.
Gather Cloud can be added to that long list of decentralized contenders, but there are a number of attributes about its offering that distinguish it. The core elements that make up Gather Cloud will sound familiar to decentralized cloud evangelists: a marketplace for buyers and sellers of spare processing power bolted onto a censorship-proof environment with guaranteed access.
The key to onboarding businesses in their droves, however, lies not in mastering these essentials but in demonstrably driving down costs. And it is here that Gather Network believes its Private Cloud offering has the edge. Its enterprise-oriented solution frees businesses from having to maintain cloud infrastructure by utilizing their existing devices. In other words, it takes existing business systems and connects them to provide the sort of on-demand processing power that is normally the preserve of corporate giants like AWS.
The Private Cloud With a Public Face
For enterprises seeking access to cloud computing, a dedicated private solution is required. This provides greater privacy assurances than its public counterpart, safeguarding precious company data and ensuring that only authorized personnel can gain access.
Cognizant of the paucity of decentralized solutions that can cater to the enterprise market, Gather has taken pains to engineer a private cloud offering that provides the same security and privacy as traditional cloud systems. Thus, businesses are not required to incur trade-offs in terms of safety when it comes to trialing Gather’s distributed cloud service.
That’s good news for banks, insurance companies, and other financial service providers, to whom any security breach could prove ruinous. The onus is now on Gather to onboard businesses to its eponymous cloud service and in doing so demonstrate that low-cost cloud computing is achievable at scale.
This ambition won’t be achieved overnight. This is why the platform is currently looking to raise $5 million to bootstrap its endeavors. Having already raised $1.5m, and with a team of 50+ working on Gather Cloud and other solutions, it might represent a bright new future for the world of cloud computing.