Applications and Computations of Distributed Computing

Applications in computer science have always been a staple part of the discipline. When talking about distributed computing one must first understand the idea being presented. Distributed computing focuses on the idea of distributed systems. That system is made up of many autonomous computers that interact in a computer network. Distributed computing has been known to have similarities with other  distributed systems. These systems include parallel and concurrent computing. Parallel computing focuses on the idea that all processors in the computer must be able to have complete access to the computer’s shared memory to exchange date between the other processors in order to accomplish the task that computer is required to solve. Concurrent computing focuses on having programs that are initially coded to  interacting with other computational processes which then can be set to run through the parallel computing style.

An example of distributed computing would be something that we find using everyday the internet. The internet is composed of a series of networks that use the  internet protocol suite. In the words of Major Owens the internet is “Those involved in the program are interested in how to use photography, videos, the Internet, film, and anything related to communications and transmission of information in the most up-to-date modern ways.” One example of how the internet is doing distributed computing is looking at basic online transactions. When a consumer purchases an item on any website say amazon they submit their credit card/payment information. This information is processed by one computer and after verifying said information then has another computer that sends information of the approved purchase to one of amazon’s warehouses. The computers along with the workers there will process and ship the order while documenting what is being taken away from the warehouse inventory. The computer that receives this information will then modify the amount of the supply of that specific product.

Another good example of distributed computing would be gaming. To be more specific I am talking about giant multiplayer online games think World of Warcraft. Servers in that game have to keep track of various factors/items that go along with just one players account. For example say a player has just found a sword in the game. A computer first has to generate the values for the weapon when he first obtains it. Then another computer/server is maintaining the item in his inventory or equipment slot depend on what the player decides to do with it. If the player decides to sell the item to a store the computer must now keep in mind that item has now been added to the inventory of said store. If the player chooses to put the item into storage and take out a different item a computer must keep track of what is left in the player’s storage.

This is just a brief showing of what computers are capable of doing with distributed computing. The applications mentioned before can be quicker and more reliable as our technology increases over time.

Sources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Distributed_computing

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