P2P Foundation

The Foundation for Peer to Peer Alternatives

It appears that the term "cloud computing" has been hijacked by corporate giants who wish to introduce server farms to hold a great amount of corporate data, as well as web based applications to access and elaborate them.

I prefer to think of a cloud as a huge number of linked personal computers, all belonging to end users, perhaps some to companies, and I have suggested that we might use such a cloud to great advantage to back up data and to connect everyone more directly.

This idea has been posted as
"Backing up the internet in a P2P 'cloud'"
and a recent comment by Sean Larner points to broolz.com for a coming application that will allow us, he says, to form our own cloud, keeping control over what data we put out there.

More recently still, a message by Jordan MacLeod, forwarded by Michel Bauwens, details the concept of Multi Homed Protection (MHP) to keep data in the open cloud secure and always available by storing it in multiple places in the cloud.

Here is the whole text as reference for those who may be thinking of doing some coding in the direction of making that open source cloud a reality.

On Tue, Jul 21, 2009 at 9:17 AM, Jordan MacLeod wrote:

It's a pleasure to announce the release of a software product a couple of years in the making. It is the first of what we hope are many to follow that capitalizes on what we are calling MHP technology. MHP, or multi-homed protection, is a patent pending process we have developed to revolutionize how we transmit and store data in cloud computing environments.

While this alpha product is frankly only suitable for those of you with technical expertise, I wanted to share this process with a broader audience because it is something that I believe will prove critically important in quickening the widespread adoption of cloud computing and build a more secure and resilient digital infrastructure (which at present is highly vulnerable to malicious attacks).

MHP works by breaking apart files before they leave your computer and spreading these files fragments over many servers. In this way, these fragments can be stored in the Cloud and/or transmitted to others with an exponentially greater degree of security and assured privacy. While the Cloud has staggering potential, it is precisely these current security and privacy concerns that prevent individuals and organizations from offloading their sensitive information onto servers that are vulnerable to hacking and privacy breaches. With MHP, no server would ever again hold a whole file that could be stolen or even read by an unintended party. The Cloud as a whole would be composed of millions of servers that each stored meaningless fragments that only had value when a user used MHP to retrieve the fragmented files and recombine them after each part is received. It is remarkably simple, yet powerfully effective in overcoming the primary barrier to cloud adoption. It simultaneously introduces a paradigm to confront the severe cyber terrorism risks of our day.

We would like to invite you to have a look at our website and product. For those of you with technical know-how, we hope you'll have a look under the hood to see how it works. For those of you who don't, we would be grateful if you pass along word of MHP to those who do. MHP is open source and we believe is relevant to billions of humans -- as a process clearly superior to the current state of the art, our goal is to attain universal adoption through free licensing to individual users and high-impact solutions to commercial, govermental and not for profit organizations.

Our website is: www.elevatorcorp.com

If you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact me. It's an exciting day for us and we hope you will join us in co-creating the Age of the Cloud.

Best regards,

Jordan Bruce MacLeod
Author, New Currency: How Money Changes the World As We Know It (Integral Publishers 2009)
Co-Founder, Elevator Software Corp. | www.elevatorcorp.com
Co-Founder, Cornerstone Global Associates
Founder, New Currency Institute | www.newcurrency.org

Noticing the apparent contradiction between "patent pending" and "open source", I asked the question to Jordan:

"I have one doubt which maybe you can clear up. You talk about a patent pending technology, but you also are saying that the technology will be open source. Can you explain?"

The answer:
We filed patent applications more than 4 years ago for this technology and yes we are indeed committed to making it open source and available free to individual users while also offering a limited number of commercial applications that are paid licensing (while still open source). Our philosophy aims at universal adoption through a hybrid model that we see as a win-win-win scenario for our company, the companies we serve and humanity as a whole: every individual on the planet has free access to MHP for personal use, it's open source to allow customization and innovation, we provide high-impact products and services to commercial enterprise and we believe our company has an opportunity to make a viable contribution to the emergence of an open cloud.

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I think its a very good idea regarding the patent issue we also filed the patent 3 years back and as said by you we are also issuing license with our open source technology.I am in a Multivariate Testing in one of the company Wildblue .Thanks for sharing your view.Will look to read more from you.
Virgo, Oklahoma City
I understand that Wildblue provides satellite internet connections. What escapes me is what this has to do with a user-generated local cloud of personal computers. Care to elaborate?
Some further correspondence with Jordan MacLeod of Elevatorcorp brings out a bit more on the intention behind their program. My questions:

I would love to see MHP as part of such a peernet structure. If course for now, this is all in the realm of ideas, but I could imagine that your multi-homed protection algorithm might be an important part of such a public p2p structure that links our own computers in a way quite independent from distant servers.

That is not to say that you could not have two tiers of your software, where commercial use in the cloud run by the big players is one use that you could charge for. Use by non-corporate players could be another layer that isn't commercial. Don't know whether such a model could make sense for you.

On your site, you say "we are committed to open source licensing". Can you elaborate on that?

I am especially interested if your approach to development and use of the technology would be compatible with a dual use model.

How do you envisage your collaboration with the world of p2p and the open source/free software people?

The answer shows a general intention to get into the p2p game, but not really any firm commitment. Here it is.

In a nutshell, the model you are suggesting is indeed how we are approaching it: individuals will have access to a free, open source products and organizations/enterprises will pay for licensing.

The vision you share ... pertaining to peernet structure is something that we definitely agree with and want to see happen. At this early stage of development, we have to focus resources on the most essential activities such as development, finance, sales, etc. So while we would love to jump into the p2p world now, there's only so much that we can commit to at this point.

If you have any concrete ideas or suggestions for bringing MHP into the p2p community or building this peernet structure, we'd certainly like to hear about it. Once we reach the Beta release, we'll also be better positioned to engage in such projects and dedicate greater resources and energy to the open source community.

If any one of you got ideas of how to best use this resource in building a real p2p network of linked personal computers, please post. You can also get directly in contact with Jordan MacLeod at

jordanbmacleod [at] yahoo [dot] com




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