Hive Computing, Inc. is a startup with a revolutionary idea that meshes smart meters and computing, and that may take the shared economy to a new level. Hive plans to connect smart meters and utilize their spare capacity to create a networked supercomputer that will be green and very inexpensive to operate.
According to Eric Frazier, Co-Founder of the start-up company, every smart meter essentially has the computing capability of a cellphone. Every few minutes these meters send usage data to the utility. However, 99% of the time they just sit idle. But if you could leverage the idle time of all of these devices, you would have thousands of central processing units with multiple cores available for parallel processing. And the more cores you have, the faster you can process information.
Hive is on its way to doing just that. So in the near future, that little meter sitting outside your house might be buzzing away, solving a problem related to optimization of the smart grid, analyzing an individual’s genome to come up with a personalized cancer treatment regime, or performing many thousands of other tasks that require a supercomputer, but that up until now have been too expensive to perform.
Frazier indicates that 10,000 meters gets you into the range of a supercomputer with a teraflop (1 trillion floating operations per second) of processing power. A million meters represents two petaflops (two quadrillion operations per second) of capacity.