We believe one of the key characteristics of Web3 infrastructure will be the move from a client-server model or a peer-to-peer (P2P) model, in which peers are both suppliers and consumers of resources. The Convergence Stack sees all-digital infrastructure from file storage, to databases, to networking, to compute moving to a P2P model. P2P computing isn’t new, it was popularized by Napster in the early 00s, but limitations in the technology made client-server a more efficient model for the delivery of Web, and especially mobile applications. As Moore’s Law continued its march through the 00s and 10s, smartphones today contain more computing power than servers back in the days of Napster. By 2020 that will have roughly 24 billion Internet-connected devices with computation capabilities. We now have billions of more devices with unprecedented computing power.
For peer-to-peer file storage, there is IPFS. For peer-to-peer databases there is OrbitDB. For peer-to-peer computing there is Golem. Building a protocol that connects PCs, mobile, data centres, and any computing resource, Golem is creating a decentralized, P2P, on-demand, computing utility that means developers and users do not have to rely on cloud providers to rent expensive computing power. Starting with the CGI rendering application that requires a lot of power, Golem is proving that a p2p compute utility can be faster, cheaper and more reliable than a cloud provider. Golem utilises its native crypto-token, GNT, to build a marketplace between providers and consumers of computing power in an attempt to use a public price to allocate resources more effectively. We believe some of the most transformative Web3 applications like machine learning and data trading will require an underlying compute utility that is decentralized and peer-to-peer, and Golem is currently the category leader.