When Dfinity raised $102 million in financing in 2018 at a $2 billion valuation in a round jointly led by Andreessen Horowitz and Polychain Capital, it was considered a step-change worldwide of blockchain technology. In an area that was associated with generating a great deal of headlines around cryptocurrency speculation, this was a shift in focus, looking rather at the architecture behind Bitcoin, Ethereum and the rest, and how it could be utilized for more than just “mining,” dispersing and utilizing new financial instruments– with a significant, mainstream VC backing the concept, no less.
Dfinity launched with an extremely lofty objective: to build what it called the “Internet Computer”: a decentralized and non-proprietary network to run the next generation of mega-applications. It called this public network “Cloud 3.0”.
Now, it looks like this Cloud is now about to break.
In Davos today, Dfinity introduced the Bronze edition of its Internet Computer, a limited release that takes the startup one step closer to its complete business release, expected later on this year.
And to prove out the principle of how an application would operate on its new network, Dfinity today showed an open social media network called LinkedUp.
The startup has actually rather cheekily called this “an open variation of LinkedIn,” the Microsoft-owned social media network for specialists. Unlike LinkedIn, LinkedUp, which runs on any internet browser, is not owned or managed by a corporate entity.
LinkedUp is constructed on Dfinity’s so-called Web Computer, its name for the platform it is constructing to distribute the next generation of software application and open internet services.
The software is hosted straight on the internet on a Switzerland-based independent information center, however in the idea of the Internet Computer, it could be hosted at your house or mine: the compute power to run the application– LinkedUp, in this case– is coming not from Amazon AWS, Google Cloud or Microsoft Azure, but is instead based upon the dispersed architecture that Dfinity is constructing.
Specifically, Dfinity notes that when enterprises and designers run their web apps and business systems on the Internet Computer, the content is decentralized throughout a minimum of four or an optimum of a limitless variety of nodes in Dfinity’s international network of independent data centers.
And while the business at first was referred to as a blockchain-based system, that’s likewise had some improvement. A spokesperson describes the Web Computer as a “next-generation distributed computing system– similar to its Mainframe, Customer Server, and Public Cloud predecessors” that is based on cryptography.
” While DFINITY is not constructing a traditional blockchain/smart contract platform, it uses advanced cryptography in its agreement layer [of the Internet Computer stack] to ensure apps and workloads have the exact same security warranties as Bitcoin or Ethereum,” the spokesperson added, “but its network of independent information centers makes sure the speed and scale required by corporates and business owners.” The Web Computer system also has governance tokens to ensure the ownership of the technology is distributed, he stated.
LinkedUp is a test case for all of this, and so Dfinity is open-sourcing LinkedUp for designers to create other kinds of open web services on the structure it has constructed.
This “open social network for professional profiles” suggests that, on Dfinity’s design, one might produce an “Open WhatsApp,” “Open eBay,” “Open Salesforce” or “Open Facebook.”
( Good news, because LinkedIn may not be so happy about a lookalike service with a name and layout that likewise looks really familiar, were it to go much further as a business venture. “While we can’t comment particularly on any proposed hallmark, LinkedIn does keep an eye on and act as required to protect our hallmarks,” a spokesperson stated.)
” Huge tech has actually hijacked the internet and stifled innovation by owning the proprietary facilities and user relationships,” said Dominic Williams, founder and chief researcher at Dfinity in a statement.
So perhaps what we should be calling this is not LinkedUp, however more a brand-new sort of “Linux for the cloud.”
Dfinity declares the application was built by “1.5 engineers in three weeks,” thus showing how simple the facilities is to use.
The tools include a Container Software application Developer Kit and an easy shows language called Motoko that is optimized for Dfinity’s Web Computer.
” The Internet Computer is developed as an option to the $3.8 trillion legacy IT stack, and empowers the next generation of developers to construct a new type of tamper-proof business software application systems and open internet services.
Dfinity says its “Internet Computer system Protocol” enables a new type of software called autonomous software application, which can ensure irreversible APIs that can not be revoked. When all these open internet services (e.g. open variations of WhatsApp, Facebook, eBay, Salesforce, etc.) are combined with other open software application and services it develops “shared network results” where everyone advantages.
We quizzed Dfinity a bit more on all this and asked whether this was an actual launch.
A spokesperson informed us: “Because our very first significant turning point of releasing a terminal-based SDK and new programs language called Motoko– by the co-creator of WebAssembly– on 1 November, DFINITY has actually launched 13 brand-new public versions of the SDK, to our 2nd significant milestone [at WEF Davos] of demoing a decentralized web app called LinkedUp on the Internet Computer operating on an independent information center in Switzerland. Subsequent milestones towards the general public launch of the Internet Computer system will include (1) on-boarding a global network of independent information centers, (2) totally checked financial system, and (3) totally evaluated Network Nervous Systems for setup and upgrades.”
It also appears like Dfinity will not be raising more cash just yet.
However the concern is how they plan to woo people to it? “Dfinity has been working with a select group of Fortune 500 business, tactical consultancies, systems integrators, venture capitalists, and universities,” the company stated.
We are not sure that it will quite be enough to get Facebook, LinkedIn, and all the other tech giants, however we’re amazed to see how this plays out.