Monday, July 28, 2008

Donating your downtime


Something fun I want to share with my peeps on the innerwebs...

You can put your computer to work while you are not using it for your own uses for a variety of causes. The smart people at Berkley originally developed the BOINC platform based on their SETI @ Home project. It allowed individuals to donate their computing downtime to process the massive reams of data they collect from satellites to analyze the data in hopes of finding signs of extra terrestial intelligince among the cacophony of outer space. It currently has 2,006,653 computers in 252 countries working together to help analyze the data. It doesn't really have a measurable impact on your own computer, but it is fun to paritipate in a massive community of people working on the same project.

You just simply download the software, go through some basic setup, and let it run while you are away from your PC. Easy!

I started using the system around 2002ish for SETI@Home but stopped doing it after reformmatting my PC and kind of forgot about it. I started doing it again because there are tons of cool new projects that the platform can be used for now. For example:

MalariaControl.net - a research project focused on finding and fighting the malaria.

ClimateControl.net - helps analyze huge reams of climate data

Rosetta@Home - analyzes the way protiens fold?! Potentially huge impact for fighting disease

There are many others centered around solving massively complex math problems, crunching physics experiments, and playing crazy complex games of chess. You can find your favorite project here.

I dig the idea of my lil' old mac helping sciency types out figure out how to help people. I'm not really using it anyhow most of the time. Compute and enjoy!

3 comments:

Awesomeman said...

Oh, is that why you had a cheese pita wrap on friday?

Chris Reilly said...

actually, I am always going to eat meat when I am around Pete so I don't make you feel so awkward. I know it is a threat to your manhood and all.

It really was that experience with you plus somebody else that made me rethink the policy. I hope you're happy.

Meatlicious said...

Waaaaaah!!!
"I have to attack other men's masculinity because I can't handle being made fun of for sticking to my convictions!!"
Is that what you said, 'cause that's all I heard. ;p