A server farm or server cluster is a collection of computer servers – usually maintained by an organization to supply server functionality far beyond the capability of a single machine. Server farms often consist of thousands of computers which require a large amount of power to run and to keep cool. At the optimum performance level, a server farm has enormous costs associated with it, both financially and environmentally. Server farms often have backup servers, which can take over the function of primary servers in the event of a primary-server failure. Server farms are typically collocated with the network switches and/or routers which enable communication between the different parts of the cluster and the users of the cluster. Server farmers typically mount the computers, routers, power supplies, and related electronics on 19-inch racks in a server room or data center.
Server farms are commonly used for cluster computing. Many modern supercomputers comprise giant server farms of high-speed processors connected by either Gigabit Ethernet or custom interconnects such as Infiniband or Myrinet. Web hostingis a common use of a server farm; such a system is sometimes collectively referred to as a web farm. Other uses of server farms include scientific simulations (such as computational fluid dynamics) and the rendering of 3D computer generated imagery (also see render farm).
Server farms are increasingly being used instead of or in addition to mainframe computers by large enterprises, although server farms do not yet reach the same reliability levels as mainframes. Because of the sheer number of computers in large server farms, the failure of an individual machine is a commonplace event, and the management of large server farms needs to take this into account by providing support for redundancy, automatic failover, and rapid reconfiguration of the server cluster.
2014 – how-bitcoins-blockchain-could-power-an-alternate-internet
The key to implementing such a system is, you guessed it, the blockchain—a distributed method of tracking and transferring assets online without need of a trusted third party (such as a bank).
or a server?
For the hardcore blockchainiacs, even that’s not enough; they expect to dissolve governments, ..
rewire daily life,
..and pour civil society a whole new foundation made of math
or unmath.. whimsy rather .. ie: io dance ness – rev of everyday life
In other words, when you’re using a blockchain, every new transaction carries with it an unforgeable record of the entire history of the currency and all previous transactions — like a kind of financial DNA. Crazy, huh?
crazy that ‘financial’ is attached to it.. how limiting.. no?
At root, the blockchain is all about replacing the servers that power today’s online world with computing power and storage that we all share.
Every network requires what programmers call a “single source of truth” — the authority that says, “this is real,” “this user is who she claims to be,” “this transaction occurred.” To date, we have depended on servers run by corporations and governments to provide our single sources of truth. Even the Internet itself uses a handful of root servers to make the domain-name system work.
and imagine if … sources of truth.. wasn’t even our focus.. not because we don’t want truth.. but because perhaps.. focusing on verification .. is keeping us from truth..
The blockchain turns the entire network into its source of truth. It’s a mechanism for us to collectively confer legitimacy on one another.
indeed.. but by entire network.. perhaps.. that’s 7 billion people living/annotating commonplace ish books.. ourselves as books… as life. rev of everyday life.. where self-talk is our data.. and most everything else (we obsess with today) becomes irrelevant..
1\ disrupt banks
rather.. disrupt (make irrelevant) money/contracts… we stop measuring human transactions… et al blockchain (or whatevers) focus is just for facilitating curiosities/resources/people
2\ redeem net – distributed data and identity
What if, when we wanted to be sure of who we were dealing with, we relied instead on distributed computing power and the magic of crypto? Today a host of small companies and projects are jockeying to usher pieces of this world into existence. A lot of the efforts focus on Twitter rather than Facebook — probably because it’s much easier to clone a network that delivers brief messages than one that serves as the hub for all things social.
These new crypto-Twitters eliminate the middleman central server that every large-scale social service today requires. They don’t store the content of messages themselves in the blockchain ledger — that wouldn’t work, since each user would end up storing the entire global database of messages. Instead, the blockchain verifies all the contributors’ identities, their relationships to the messages under their names, and the integrity of the messages……secure blogging on the open web
what if perhaps instead.. we just make sure everyone has something to do.. rather than focus on security et al
As Bitcoin’s Andresen suggested about Ethereum, many of these projects will vanish into the, er, ether long before they reach that threshold. Security flaws will stymie them; usability problems will cripple them; they will sink in the mire of large-scale software development. Even those projects that persevere and prosper will need to prove their utility. Why go to all this extra trouble to do stuff online? Sure, you could use the Alexandria software to, say, document all the tweets surrounding a big protest that a government might wish to pretend never happened. But for most everyday purposes, blockchain techniques might be overkill.
Then again, there are still tons of public and private needs that the Internet has failed to serve. For instance, Thor Muller, a writer-entrepreneur who has written lucidly about the distributed-ledger concept at the heart of Bitcoin, imagines the benefits of applying the blockchain to the records of public court proceedings — liberating them from the antiquated storage methods the U.S. still relies on, and making them widely and reliably available. “It’s not going to happen at the level of the federal government any time soon,” Muller says. “But maybe with the state courts you could leapfrog all that.”
leap frogging would be calling into question court proceedings et al.. no?
3\ crypto utopia – distributed everything
The server farms will fall fallow, and the Internet will get back its inter-ness
The hurdles these visions would have to overcome are those any blockchain-decentralization scenario faces: the challenge of finding people to begin using and moving their own assets into new, unproven systems; the “discovery problem” — figuring out how users of anonymous, crypto-secured networks can find one another to transact business; and the fear that all this crypto-secured, anonymous-transaction-based tech will simply power illegal enterprises and antisocial activities.
A blockchain-powered economy is most likely to take root far away from the U.S., many observers believe — either in the developing world, where there’s less of a reliable financial system in place, or in places where property rules and contract law have shaky foundations (think Russia or China). Wherever it starts to take off, it will face the twin hurdles of complexity overload and government pushback.
Earlier this year, in a dazzling talk titled “Our Comrade the Electron,” Ceglowski lamented that “we’ve centralized the bejesus out of the Internet.”
I wanted to know what Ceglowski thought of Our Friend the Blockchain. Did it raise his hopes of reversing that situation? Could it move the digital world down an alternate road of privacy, peer-to-peer empowerment, and freedom?
He emailed me with a depressing but persuasive reply: It’s the wrong fight on the wrong turf.
“There is a tendency in computer-land to seek technical solutions to political problems,” Ceglowski says. “In my opinion, the focus on the blockchain (and related ideas) falls into that misguided category. The idea that we should look to algorithms and technology to reclaim our freedoms is fundamentally undemocratic. It presupposes a technical elite who would ‘fix the Internet’ for everyone else. While I can see how this appeals to romantic ideas of hacking the system, I see it as a dangerous trend at worst, and a distraction at best.
The question to ask is, do these blockchain-based enhancements of our technologies end up giving us more freedom and initiative? Or will a world of “distributed autonomous organizations,” empowered financial algorithms and bots that own themselves only hem in our human sphere of control?
It could be exciting to sit back and watch the future drive itself. But it might be smart to keep our eyes on the road and our hands on the wheel.
so let’s do that. let’s 7 billion plus of us.. do that..
let’s do this first: free art-ists.
via Vinay (on asking him – is blockchain as you see it server dependent.. or can it replace ie: server farms..):
This depends on how blockchain scaling works out. Check out IPFS for something blockchain flavored that definitely can replace server farms.