Tech's Newest Trend – Decentralization?

from the is-it-really-now? dept

I don’t necessarily disagree with the point of Kevin Werbach’s opinion piece saying that decentralization is important in technology, but I do wonder how that’s going to be surprising to just about anyone. It reads like an article from two or three years ago. People have been talking about decentralization and things like peer-to-peer for a while now, and I’m not sure how it could be the “newest” trend. It’s just the regular pendulum swinging back and forth. For some things, centralized data works better, for others decentralized. The computing industry has a habit of trying to solve all issues with one of those methods, and then switching over to the other. There were terminal and mainframes (centralized), and then the growth of PCs (decentralized) putting computing power on everyone’s desks. Then, the pendulum started to swing back again, and we had client/server computing and “network computers” where the important stuff was supposed to happen on the servers (centralized). Now, we’re talking about peer-to-peer and distributed/grid computing and suddenly we’re back to a decentralized world. I’m not saying that decentralized computing isn’t useful… I’m just not sure it’s worth the hype as the “next big thing”. The fact is that both exist, and can be used when necessary.

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