Sun Microsystems is about ready to launch a centralized public Grid system made up of 5,000 CPU sockets, a mix of Ultrasparc and Opteron. The announcement came today (March 21, 2006) via Jonathan Schwartz on the Sun corporate blog.
The Sun Grid service will be charging for processing cycles at a rate of $1 per hour. This is could change the way we look at CPU processing power since it turns it into a billable utility much like electricity. The service will be accessible from network.com and will accept PayPal payments.
I am still trying to fathom the magnitude of Sun's feat and think others will have the same struggle. Therefore, I feel adoption of the Sun Grid may be slow to begin with since it is the first offering of its kind. Not to mention, I am concerned at the potential cost associated with paying for process like any other utility. I guess I do not want to see it get out of hand where processing consumers are being taken advantage of.
For more perspective on the Sun Grid check out these posts by Dan Farber and Clint Boulton.