Decentralized Allocation of Geo-distributed Edge Resources using Smart Contracts
In the Internet of Things (loT) era, edge computing is a promising paradigm to improve the quality of service for latency sensitive applications by filling gaps between the loT devices and the cloud infrastructure. Highly geo-distributed edge computing resources that are managed by independent and competing service providers pose new challenges in terms of resource allocation and effective resource sharing to achieve a globally efficient resource allocation. In this paper, we propose a novel blockchain-based model for allocating computing resources in an edge computing platform that allows service providers to establish resource sharing contracts with edge infrastructure providers apriori using smart contracts in Ethereum. The smart contract in the proposed model acts as the auctioneer and replaces the trusted third-party to handle the auction. The blockchain-based auctioning protocol increases the transparency of the auction-based resource allocation for the participating edge service and infrastructure providers. The design of sealed bids and bid revealing methods in the proposed protocol make it possible for the participating bidders to place their bids without revealing their true valuation of the goods. The truthful auction design and the utility-aware bidding strategies incorporated in the proposed model enables the edge service providers and edge infrastructure providers to maximize their utilities. We implement a prototype of the model on a real blockchain test bed and our extensive experiments demonstrate the effectiveness, scalability and performance efficiency of the proposed approach.