If you told me a few years ago that I’d be sending simple math calculations to a bunch of supercomputers in Mountain View, California rather than reaching for the calculator next to me on my desk, I’d probably have laughed. I’ve noticed that increasingly I’ve been using Google’s Calculator. Why? There are three reasons:
- I’ve got broadband now and it doesn’t take 20 seconds to dial up to the internet. Nor does it cost a thing to be using the internet.
- Google will typically answer your query in a fraction of a second.
- Firefox is always open and there is an omnipresent Google “search” box.
You might have found yourself doing this too. Type a number into your Firefox Google Search Box and have a look at the autocomplete entries. When I enter the number 1 into this box, I get whole pages full of maths queries.
I wonder: if we’re sending such basic things such as basic maths equations to computers across the world, isn’t it just a matter of time before grid computing takes off and we send all kinds of tasks over the internet?