Cisco submitted a patent application back in September 2015 for a “Crowd-sourced cloud computing” system, according to information from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). The patent outlines how computer owners may be able to offer up their unused processing power for certain processes – including the energy-intensive mining process.
The filing describes how a user could partition their resources to create dedicated computing power for a cloud application. The cloud application would then be used for various purposes, Cisco notes, going on to explain:
“This model is suitable for, among other things, offering distributed processing and services that can be optimized for speed, volume, scale and resiliency, cost, and regulatory compliance–for example, distributed neighborhood theft protection systems, or cluster, city or municipality county relevant services… One such case involves bitcoin mining, which may be very computational intensive and is typically more convenient for every participant when done in ‘mining pools.'”