Who remembers SETI@home, the project run by SETI to harness internet connected PC’s across the globe to help analyse signals from space ? It was an early and successful attempt at mass distributed (or grid) computing using a small piece of software to use latent CPU cycles on client machines when the screensaver was engaged.
Now jump forward and the question is why hasn’t anyone taken this concept into the enterprise and into the BPM world itself ? If you can imagine the many desktops that exist in an organisation sitting fairly idle when they could act as a BPM grid project to;
- analyse, predict and act upon real-time data,
- alter business rules on the fly,
- creating intelligent workflow,
- perform background simulation and CEP
Why bother with expensive server hardware (and future upgrades etc) when there’s potentially far more power sitting across the organisation not being fully utilised ? Are there any examples of this in the BPM industry currently, if so would be good to hear about it.
Addendum 2012: Given the proliferation of smartphone devices, could the corporate network somehow tap into latent processing power of the mobile network to extend the reach of business analytics ?