Golem was one of the pioneer projects that showcased the potential of the Ethereum network to the cryptocurrency community. Back then, in 2016, developers were beginning to come to terms with the ability of the Ethereum blockchain to support decentralized applications (DApp). Now, the developers of this potentially revolutionary project are ready for the beta release, and as expected, it is causing a stir in the crypto community.
The Golem DApp
The Golem project is a blockchain-driven DApp that will allow users to monetize their idle computing power in exchange for GNT tokens. At the onset of the project, it was envisioned as the “Airbnb” for computers, a global marketplace where people can offer their idle computing power for rent. The project was one of the premier ICOs on the Ethereum network. During its November 2016 ICO, it raised 820,000 ETH valued at $8 million at the time in less than half an hour. The project has been in development since then.
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The goal of the Golem project is to make heavy-duty computing processes like machine learning, big data calculations and computer-generated images (CGI) rendering to become less expensive and more accessible. When fully implemented, it will function as a decentralized data center; a supercomputer on a blockchain, providing a more secure network superstructure for the internet.
The Beta Launch
According to a blog post on the project website from April 10, the Brass Beta release of the Golem project has gone live. After being in development for about two years, the project team has decided that it is time for the mainnet launch of the platform. While announcing the launch, the team acknowledged that this new milestone opens up the project to new risks. The project team, however, maintains that such risks are necessary for the development of the platform.
The Golem Brass Beta release has one use case which is for CGI rendering. Users that wish to render a Blender or LuxRender scene can use the Golem Brass Beta to distribute the CGI processing across many CPUs and GPUs. Rendering computer animations is known to be a time-consuming endeavor which requires a great deal of computing power especially for complex scenes with high vertex counts.
The next step in the process is to create a dedicated plugin for the Blender software to make the Golem-Blender interface more manageable and efficient. All of this is geared towards making Golem become a modular and self-contained system that can handle a complex process like machine learning. The newly released Beta version comes with Ethereum mainnet support, which means that users can connect Golem to the blockchain and spend GNT tokens in exchange for computing power. As with other transactions on the Ethereum blockchain, fees (‘gas’) must be paid to enable all transactions.
As part of the Beta release, the development team has also launched a bug bounty campaign where users can identify issues with the software and earn GNT tokens. The other planned releases are Clay Golem, followed by Stone Golem, and then Iron Golem. Part of the parameters being tested is scalability which continues to be a big issue in the Ethereum blockchain.
Expectations and Price Movements
The Golem team has taken a considerable amount of time to finally release a product that users can test. As a result, there is enthusiasm being shown by followers of the project that seemed to have caught the imagination of blockchain enthusiasts early on. On numerous forum posts on Reddit, the majority of the responses has seen users congratulating the development and expressing a desire to test out the new beta release.
According to OnchainFX.com, the price of the GNT token has increased by about ten percent in the last 24 hours, as at the time of writing this article. Immediately after the announcement went public, there was a spike in the price of GNT tokens from just over $0.25 to more than $0.27 in a matter of minutes. Since the announcement, the price seems to have settled around $0.27. Golem has a current market cap of $226 million.