Back of an envelope arithmetic here, I reckon you’ve got orders for 5,300, or so, machines to date. Will the cloud processing be able to cope if,say, half that number try to print simultaneously?
As someone who designs and operates cloud software fairly often, the standard approach is a extensible architecture, of which Amazon’s EC2 is the best know example.
If more computing power is needed, more computing time and processor cores are given over to the task. If not, the resources are released back to the common pool.
TLDR: Computing power should grow and shrink as needed by the devices.
That’s the beauty of using a cloud service (Glowforge is using Google Compute Engine.) If they need more power they can scale pretty much immediately. If they’ve designed their software to be truly “cloudy” then it will happen automatically as load increases.
Nevertheless, there are limits. As big as Google’s infrastructure is, it would be rather amusing to have every single GlowForge user simultaneously push their print jobs through the “cloud”. Then the nth user attempts to submit a print job, just to be told: “your job cannot be processed right now because the cloud is saturated. please wait until resources free up.”
I mentioned this in another thread…
despite assurances given, this cloud thing is not working all that well, at least on my end. and recently the servers went down, the cloud went poof for a while. the next day the servers were taken down for servicing. additionally, I live in rural Kentucky. the Wi-Fi here is less than optimal, even when it’s working like it’s supposed to. to me, having my GF set up as a normal print device would make so much more sense. I also can’t get the GF to connect through my two windows machines. it connects through my apple ipad 4 but is extremely difficult to connect all the way through to my router. my windows machines can see it and I can even connect to it, but it has a very difficult time then advancing to or even seeing the router again and passing through. I’ve tried this several times and even re-hook it up to the apple device just to make sure I understand the steps. it works fairly quickly on the apple, but I’ve only managed to get it to connect all the way through on the windows rig. and, even when I did get complete connection, it wouldn’t activate the camera to see the material.
I understand the cloud made a lot of sense in the beginning, but it’s just not working very well at all for me. it’s quite frustrating. I’d be happy to pay extra for some sort of black box rig that would hold all the software on my end and yet could connect to the internet for firmware updates. I’d even be happy to beta test such a device. I’ve heard reports, too, that there is a file size problem and some slows on some types of images. we all expect bugs in a new company and product, but even if you fix all the bugs on your end and even if you do firmware updates on our end, there is still this finicky thing called the internet. 100 megabyte files and even smaller, can take a LOT of time on an iffy connection.
I believe I wrote to you by email a while back asking to move this off the cloud and you said no. ok, we’re now in production with more and more data we can use to evaluate all this. I’m completely willing to pay for a black box add-on. I want a Wi-Fi glowforge printer, similar to my other Wi-Fi printers, one I can design work on my pc and then just call up my GF printer and have it print without difficult connections, cloud irregularities and slow speeds. I’m not sure what problem the cloud is handling for you, but it’s not for some of us. please reconsider your position on this, even if it’s “down the road sometime”.
Sorry mate, there is a snowflakes chance in hell of that happening at this point in time.
Your best bet is @scott.wiederhold’s project (can someone add the link?) or to hope that those engineers from Google, Apple and Boingboing.net kick the Glowforge Cloud into 3rd gear
The servers down was an announced …
Thanks for the feedback, @craigdwalters. I’m sorry we let you down with that outage - we’re working hard to make sure our uptime improves, and appreciate your feedback.