21 Inc’s Bitcoin Vision Becomes Clearer With Announcement of …

21 Inc

has
announced

the launch of ping21, a service that allows users to check the

uptime

or
latency

of any given website from
Bitcoin Computers

on the 21 network. This is the first release in a series of
projects related to the
Internet of Things

that the company plans to release in the coming weeks.

How Does It Work?

Thanks to the release of its Bitcoin Computer last year, 21 has
created a decentralized network of machines that are financially
connected to each other via Bitcoin. Ping21 essentially takes
advantage of 21’s network of devices to process various requests in
exchange for Bitcoin. This first service offered by the network
allows web developers to see whether a specific device or server is
online or experiencing connectivity issues.

Ping21 also takes advantage of
21’s micropayments
marketplace

, which means the relatively high fees (at least in this context)
associated with
on-chain

Bitcoin transactions will be avoided.

Webmasters will also soon be able to pay to
ping

even more devices once the 21 Bitcoin Computer is
no longer a
requirement

to join the
grid-computing

network.

Why is Ping21 Useful?

Individuals who have not built their own websites in the past
may not understand the value of this new offering from 21. The
ability to ping a website from many different locations around the
world allows a webmaster to understand whether there are any
potential connectivity issues for their site visitors.

There are already companies, such as

Pingdom

, which allow webmasters to determine how their website’s
connectivity is performing in various parts of the world. These
companies charge monthly fees to their customers because the idea
of pay-per-ping was not practical before the existence of
Bitcoin-enabled micropayments.

With ping21, webmasters are able to pay for pings as they’re
needed, and the decentralized nature of the 21 network of devices
allows webmasters to gain access to devices in many more locations
than what is offered by current, centralized offerings.

Creating the Machine Economy

Ping21 is a sneak preview of the machine economy, which 21 is
attempting to cultivate. In addition to a currency, 21 also views
Bitcoin as, potentially, a
new system resource

for computers. Bitcoin has essentially enabled the set of
incentives necessary for devices to trade data and services on a
level that was not possible in the past.

Of course, if a new marketplace for machine-to-machine payments
is developed, it’s important for one machine to be able to verify
the authenticity of data sold to it by another machine. When asked
about this point, 21 Engineer Andrew DeSantis told
Bitcoin Magazine

:

“If two nodes offering similar services are returning
drastically different results, we can perform audits and make the
appropriate adjustments to each node’s reputation on the
marketplace.”

Comment

from discussion
Ping21: Earn Bitcoin by Monitoring Uptime and
Latency

.

While ping21 may seem like a simple service to some, 21 is
essentially laying the groundwork for many of the
most-interesting applications of Bitcoin

that have been talked about in the past. This is the sort of
structure that could eventually power decentralized versions of
many cloud-based computing services.

21 CEO
Balaji S.
Srinivasan

had the following to say on the release of ping21:

“The ping service is relatively easy to deploy and understand,
but we want to stress that ping21 is just a first example of what
can be done with these tools. It’s a proof of concept to show
what kinds of services you can offer via decentralized
Bitcoin-incentivized grid computing that are qualitatively
different from — and complementary to — what you can get from
centralized cloud computing.”

21 has
posted a ping21 tutorial

for developers on their website.

Kyle Torpey is a freelance journalist who has been following
Bitcoin since 2011. His work has been featured on VICE
Motherboard, Business Insider, NASDAQ, RT’s Keiser Report and
many other media outlets. You can follow


@kyletorpey

on Twitter.

mm

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