In this session we will talk about
the importance of Nodes and SuperNodes
to every Pioneer and what are some examples of
additional roles Nodes can play on Pi Network.
Not only is Pi Node the cornerstone of the
Pi Blockchain, but also it contributes to
the ecosystem building and economic applications.
For example, in addition to securing the ledger,
SuperNodes can also technically support
applications of Decentralized Finance (DeFi)
such as the tokenization of real
world assets and tokenization real estate.
But we are going to discuss a bit more on
why the node software is important even in
non-blockchain sense and
how Pi Nodes and blockchain
matter to Pioneers who neither
serve as SuperNodes nor Nodes.
The original vision for the Pi Node software was
never just limited to operating and supporting
the blockchain. Of course, the blockchain as it
secures a ledger of transactions, it is certainly
the core and base layer of the decentralization
of Pi Network. But the benefits of building
a user-friendly node software is having (i)
extensibility of the functionalities of Node and
(ii) a large group of people who can contribute
to the applications of the Node software. We want
to share a bit more about the long-term strategy
of the Node software beyond securing the ledger.
Let’s look at the network currently.
We have over 200,000 Pioneers who
downloaded and installed the Pi Node software,
and there are over 60,000 nodes active every day out
of which 40,000 appear to be actively managed, for
example, updating to the latest version. A portion
of these Nodes will become Supernodes, depending
on the selection process based on the hardware,
operating system, network performance etc.
But what is the Core Team’s plan for the
people running the Pi Node software who are
not necessarily Supernodes or Nodes responsible
for maintaining the ledger? Actually, we have
great expectations for them and are open to any
suggestions that build on top of our thoughts.
First of all, the Desktop Pi App serves as a
redundant interface for the mobile Interface.
Not only does this provide desktop or laptop
accessibility to the mobile application
functionalities, e.g. chats, mining status, future
uses of apps on Pi Platform, but also it serves as
one important step to decentralization
in regard to the centralized points of
mobile app stores. App stores have been one point
of centralization in Pi Network’s ecosystem all along.
Given the controversy about cryptocurrencies, app
stores are particularly strict in reviewing applications
related to cryptocurrencies. We experienced
their centralized control over the past 2 years
of development of Pi Network (e.g. our mobile
applications had to go through very rigorous
review cycles to get approved or stay live), and
we saw other legitimate apps sometimes getting completely
delisted from the stores for various reasons. We hope this will never happen to Pi,
but shall the app stores decide to remove
our app from their stores for any reasons,
the Node software will be our backup
to still maintain the functionalities,
the community and the organization of the network.
By having our node software that contains the Pi
application component, we de-risk the possibility of any
potential failure in centralized apps stores.
Apart from maintaining and securing
the Pi blockchain, nodes can also allow
individuals to share computing resources
and get fairly compensated for it.
Such resources include: Processing power, Disk
Space, and Network bandwidth.These are not our
immediate plans but are all possibilities
that will come further down the line.
Let’s look at use cases for each:
Disk space: Think of it as a decentralized
encrypted Dropbox that allows people to
get compensated for securely storing files.
Its implementation can be similar
to BitTorrent in the notion that
files will be stored in a decentralized network of
nodes, while at the same time staking mechanisms
can make sure all files stored on the Pi
Network are fully licenced. (e.g. if a file
is found to be infringing someones rights the file’s
uploader loses their stake).
To put this in perspective, the core team pays
thousands of dollars every month to Amazon AWS (S3)
for storing the Pi node’s source files so that
pioneers can download them. In the same manner,
other websites and applications do the same. Instead of
these websites paying Amazon they could be paying
that cost to pioneers using Pi, thus creating a
passive income opportunity to Pi Node operators.
Network Bandwidth. This use case is
also known as Content Delivery Networks
(CDN), and it is how the
Internet is able to scale today.
For example, the Pi application (like any app or website)
contains (i) graphics (images, videos, and media) and
(ii) it needs to ask the server individualized
questions (e.g. what’s my Pi balance right now). While the
individualized questions must reach a Pi database
to be answered, the vast majority of the graphics
are the same for all members and can be answered
by a decentralized server near that person. So,
for example, when a pioneer in Paris opens her
app, the Pi logo comes to her from a server
in Paris operated by our CDN provider, while her
balance comes from Pi’s database in San Francisco.
This process helps speed up the application
tremendously because the majority of the data
can be delivered fast from a nearby datacenter and
doesn’t need to travel long distances through the
Pacific ocean. All major apps and websites on
the internet use CDNs to deliver their content.
Once again, to put it in perspective, the core team spends
thousands of dollars a month to our CDN providers.
But for Pi Network with a distributed node
network, there should be no need for such an
intermediary CDN when there are tens of thousands
of Pioneer nodes in every corner of the world.
There is probably a Pioneer closer to you
than any of the CDN’s servers.
There may be one in the same building that you are right now.
What if Pi Nodes could utilize their unused network
bandwidth to function as a decentralized CDN?
If we were able to create such
a CDN marketplace for P ioneers,
they could be receiving additional
passive income for operating their Nodes.
Processing power. Every computer has one or more
processors (CPUs) and those CPUs are mostly unused
during the day and completely unused during the
night, when the person is sleeping . Think of your processor more like your car:
it is mostly sitting in your parking lot
waiting for you to use it when you need it.
At the same time there are a lot of companies
paying large monthly fees renting servers from
cloud providers such as Amazon AWS (EC2). Potentially
Pi Network could match companies with Pioneers
who are interested in renting out their unused CPU
time? According to our Pi Node stats, every day
there over 380,000 CPU cores operated by Pi Nodes
and they are unused about 69% of the time on average.
The good thing about sharing computer resources
is that everyone could potentially participate
in sharing them even on a part time basis.
Moreover, due to the way we structured the Pi
Node Software technically these functionalities
can be implemented as Docker Containers
on top of our Node software and therefore
the development of such modules doesn’t
necessarily have to come from the core team.
OK, take these ideas I presented
today as food for thought.
Add your own creative ideas to it
and come build the future together!
In this session we will talk about