Constellation Labs on New Partnerships
In a recent interview with Tytan of FomoHunt, Constellation Labs CEO Ben Jorgensen sat down to spend time answering questions about the latest DAG updates. The interview was lively, laid back, and focused on DAG’s current progress and recent partnership with cloud computing provider, StackPath. While short, the discussion proved to be a wealth of information, and Ben expanded on several exciting initiatives.
To summarize, DAG is moving ahead at a consistent pace. Mainnet is being rolled out gradually, with the first set of node operators already selected. These operators are hand-picked programmers and DAG enthusiasts who enjoy tinkering with blockchain and cryptocurrency projects. These “Navy Seals,” as Ben calls them, will be instrumental in providing feedback and suggestions for the fledgling network.
Another announcement, which was briefly mentioned, is Constellation’s partnership with defense contractor Decisive Point. From their website, Decisive Point describes itself as a technology solution and consulting firm specializing in “. . . early-stage startups” and “helps them leverage the scale of the US Government to grow. With domain expertise in federal acquisitions and national security, Decisive Point is driven to get the best technology to the warfighter, faster” (emphasis added).
Though a bit vague, digging deeper into their site reveals, Decisive Point has initiatives with advanced materials, VR/AR, artificial intelligence, unmanned vehicles (drones), and Space. All of these platforms will require massive amounts of data and expanded communications, although the ominous “Space” category is of particular interest. The creation and establishment of the Space Force will require secure transmissions that will need innovative and scalable solutions for every aspect of its operations. By utilizing their existing relationship with the US Air Force, this new partnership will allow Constellation Labs to insert itself firmly into the “Big Data” ecosystem of the Armed Services.
To give some perspective on how big this “Big Data” area is, DAG reports that every 60 seconds, the US Air Force creates 1,820 terabytes (1.82 petabytes) of data . This data is generated primarily through communications platforms. They further report that every 60 seconds, the US Air Force sends over 160 million emails.
The announcement with StackPath requires perhaps the most background information. As research for this article commenced, it became clear that StackPath and other cloud computing providers are the unsung heroes of internet infrastructure.
What is StackPath?
The easiest way to understand StackPath is to think of it as a massive cloud computing backbone of the internet. It markets itself as “Serverless Cloud Computing on the Edge.” In short, it delivers on the original promise of cloud computing.
But what is this serverless computing jargon? Surely the internet still needs servers. Yes, the internet requires a lot of servers. Consider the following background information.
In the early days of the internet, individual servers provided the backbone and infrastructure. These machines ran all day, were centralized, and expensive to run. Fast forward a few years, and server farms became the norm. This expanded infrastructure introduced further redundancy but reduced operating costs. With the advent of worldwide data centers came cloud-based computing, and “software-as-a-service” became more accessible to the everyday consumer and business. In these examples, we can see the trend towards a more decentralized landscape, and ease of adoption as third-parties handle all the back-end infrastructure. Several more new technologies, including Virtual Machines, Containers, and Edge computing, helped expand the current capabilities to “Serverless Computing,” which StackPath utilizes.
Serverless computing does indeed use servers, so many in fact that provider companies operate data centers all over the globe. To take advantage of this ubiquitous computing power, there are multiple layers of abstraction between the user and the infrastructure, so much so that programmers can focus primarily on how their code will run. This differs from the old standard in which coders were forced to concern themselves with formatting their application for a specific language/environment. In short, the serverless ecosystem creates a more “plug and play” platform upon which coders can iterate, accelerating development and product rollout.
Additionally, in this environment, clients are only charged when they use a serverless cloud to perform a specific function. For example, they may be charged a fraction of a cent for a database query or API request. In the past, clients would be charged a monthly fee regardless of usage. Paying for only function calls is referred to as “Functions as a Service.” In this streaming business model, clients only pay as their applications run. A comparison would be if consumers paid for Netflix based on how many minutes they watched a movie or show.
In the process of integrating with StackPath, Constellation Labs and DAG have access to a comprehensive technology system comparable to Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft’s Azure cloud systems. The flexibility and strength of the platform means that spinning up a DAG node will take minutes instead of hours. Furthermore, in his interview Ben briefly mentioned that Constellation Labs would also have access to several large StackPath partners, increasing their business network and expanding the DAG reach.
This further development will allow DAG to fulfill its goal of validating massive amounts of data in a secure, fast, and efficient manner. This type of service is not only crucial for Armed Services, but for any company that regularly handles large data sets. As technologies like 5G become widespread and connectivity increases, the demand for data integrity will rise exponentially. As Ben states in the interview: “We want to be that badge where people say . . . this is valid data, I know that it’s gone through data validation, and it’s governed by a community. I want to be on board with this. This is setting new standards and expectations . . . that I’m hoping more people will say ‘Oh you’re totally right, this is a big concern.’ “
These are indeed exciting times for the DAG team. As industry veterans in the technology and blockchain space, they are acutely aware of the crypto hype machine that can take on a life of its own. To under promise and over deliver, the team has made a conscious decision to make announcements only when they represent actual progress. At the end of his interview with Tytan, Ben did tease out a future partnership with a blockchain company with values similar to his own. This week Constellation Labs released the actual announcement: DAG would become a Chainlink node operator. This partnership deserves a separate article, but needless to say, this is a positive development for both companies.
Written by Kaltoro
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For more Constellation content on The Daily Chain see the links below:
Decisive Point partnership
Serverless Computing Explained
Intro to 5G
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