Hakim Weatherspoon, Associate Professor of Computer Science and Associate Director of the Cornell Institute for Digital Agriculture (CIDA); Robbert van Renesse, Professor of Computer Science; and Zhiming Shen, Ph.D. '17 have received major seed funding for their joint cloud-optimization start-up, Exotanium. The start-up launched in 2018 now has a new round of support Walden International and Nepenthe Capital, LLC. Exotanium's steady rise includes the completition of a successful pilot with software company, Autodesk, Inc. The new technology addresses the need for "high-quality and budget-friendly cloud-optimization solutions" as "renting servers in the cloud from cloud providers can easily consume 50% of a company’s revenue." As reported by Sara Baier in Rev: Ithaca Startup Works and the Chronicle:
Exotanium’s technology—based on Shen’s doctoral research—allows customers to take advantage of deeply discounted server space on the cloud spot market, which consists of unused servers that large providers—think Amazon, Google, or Microsoft—rent out at 10 times less than the average rate. Exotanium’s cloud-scale software systems are able to harness this unused cloud storage by automatically moving a customer’s applications from one server to another without interruption. This solution offers businesses substantial cloud savings—reducing spending by up to 90%—while also enhancing both operational security and performance.