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Capt. Picard
03-12-07, 05:26 AM
http://www.physorg.com/news92674403.html

Engineer Creates First Academic Playstation 3 Computing Cluster

http://www.physorg.com/newman/gfx/news/engineercrea.jpg

The Sony Playstation 3, Xbox and Nintendo Wii have captivated a generation of computer gamers with bold graphics and rapid-fire animation. But these high-tech toys can do a lot more than just play games. At North Carolina State University, Dr. Frank Mueller imagined using the power of the new PS3 to create a high-powered computing environment for a fraction of the cost of the supercomputers on the market.
Mueller, an associate professor of computer science, has built a supercomputing cluster capable of both high-performance computing and running the latest in computer gaming. His cluster of eight PS3 machines – the first such academic cluster in the world – packs the power of a small supercomputer, but at a total cost of about $5,000, it costs less than some desktop computers that have only a fraction of the computing power.
“In the computing world there is a list of the top 500 fastest computers,” Mueller says. Currently the fastest is BlueGene/L, a supercomputer with more than 130,000 processors at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. The PS3 cluster at NC State does not break into the top 500, but Mueller estimates that with approximately 10,000 PS3 machines anyone could create the fastest computer in the world – albeit with limited single-precision capabilities and networking constraints.

saturnotaku
03-12-07, 06:27 AM
That cluster has already cured most types of cancer and is about 80% finished finding a cure for AIDS.

Capt. Picard
03-12-07, 06:59 AM
That cluster has already cured most types of cancer and is about 80% finished finding a cure for AIDS.

Cool. Now we must just connect it to the Internet and let it filter out all the spam in the world.

t3hl33td4rg0n
03-12-07, 09:22 AM
IBM says the Cell architecture will replace BlueGene as the worlds fastest supercomputer... I dont doubt they're words since they are party responsible for its technology!

IBM FTW! Hope they're folding@home right now lol

Bad_Boy
03-12-07, 09:48 AM
I wonder if folding @ home is coming this month. Havent heard about it in a while.

Marvel_us
03-12-07, 09:54 AM
I wonder if folding @ home is coming this month. Havent heard about it in a while.

Me neither. I think it'd be a great reason to keep my system on while charging up the controller.

That cluster has already cured most types of cancer and is about 80% finished finding a cure for AIDS.

Seriously? If so that's very cool.

thor1182
03-12-07, 10:15 AM
a bit off topic, but you can't "cure" cancer. You can get ride of one case of cancer, but never cure it.

zoomy942
03-12-07, 11:14 AM
a bit off topic, but you can't "cure" cancer. You can get ride of one case of cancer, but never cure it.
you under-estimate Th7 c3ll!!

Lyme
03-12-07, 12:26 PM
Seriously? If so that's very cool.

He's pulling your leg, the PS3 has done neither. However the Cell chip was desiged more for supercomputing needs than with games in mind.

The cure for Cancer is a interesting one in the least. It has come to light recently that Cancer may not be a spontanious or natural occuring disease. Given that there is a direct connection between the Human Papilloma Virus and cervical cancer. It has been proven that immunizing girls around the age of 14 for HPV has the effect of stopping ~98% of the cases of cervical cancer.

OWA
03-12-07, 12:32 PM
Thanks for the link. It would interesting to see what kinds of things they end up using it for.

Bad_Boy
03-15-07, 07:07 AM
Me neither. I think it'd be a great reason to keep my system on while charging up the controller.

Ah, just got confirmation that Folding@home will be available after the 1.6 firmware is out. 1.6 will enable a F@H icon in the network menu that will allow you to download the client for free (obviously). It comes in at aprox. 200mb.


http://www.scei.co.jp/corporate/release/pdf/070315e.pdf
http://plusd.itmedia.co.jp/games/articles/0703/15/news066.html (pics)
"It's a big deal," said Pande. "Even starting small, the PS3 means a dramatic increase."

Here's one scenario: Sony says there are about 1 million PS3 owners in the United States and Canada. If just 10,000 of them (1 percent) download the simulations and run them to completion, the project estimates it will double the computing help it already gets from personal computers around the globe

When PS3 owners are running the folding simulations, they'll be able to see displays that update them on how close the work unit is to completion. One of the planned displays will depict a view of the world that shows a glowing light everywhere a PS3 is running the Folding@Home software.

OWA
03-15-07, 09:16 AM
I've never run a folding@home client but I'll probably give it a shot. The 2nd quote sounds pretty cool (the glowing light part).

Tygerwoody
03-15-07, 09:41 AM
i never did and still don't get what folding actually does. It just makes no sense... Has it ever solved anything? What exactly are you doing?

brady
03-15-07, 09:47 AM
i never did and still don't get what folding actually does. It just makes no sense... Has it ever solved anything? What exactly are you doing?

I was wondering the same thing. I just finished reading the wiki article on it and I'm still not certain of it's exact purpose. In any event, who wouldn't want to be in a position where you could go to your department and say "uhhh, yeah, so I need some money to buy 5 ps3's for some...research...yeah some important research..."

NC state, you just got pwnd by Dr. Frank Mueller!

OWA
03-15-07, 10:24 AM
I thought the wiki explanation was pretty straight forward. It's just a distributed computing project to hopefully solve complex calculations in a shorter amount of time (& probably a lot more cost effective also). The researchers mention being limited by computing power so I guess the hope is that the distributed computing model can overcome that or at least lessen it substantially.

i never did and still don't get what folding actually does. It just makes no sense... Has it ever solved anything? What exactly are you doing?
You can read about some of the things they've (Stanford) accomplished here:

http://folding.stanford.edu/results.html

Their main page is here (also gives a description of what it is):

http://folding.stanford.edu/

Lyme
03-15-07, 11:19 AM
Folding@Home is a project based upon the premise that protiens in your body will self assemble themselves only in specific ways. The project through distributed computing tests which protiens will assemble with other protiens and in which ways (it's called folding).

The good:
-Helps researchers better understand how protien chemistry works in the body.
-Can help in the research of new drugs, cures, ways to combat protien deficencies, etc.
-Only requires your computer while it is doing nothing.
-Might give you warm and fuzzies inside for doing something good/useful.

The bad:
-Continued use of your computer will raise your electricity bill.
-While the project is handled by Stanford, you can be assured that anything that is a breakthrough will be patented and sold to a large pharmacutical company and you'll see nothing, and the pharmacutial company will charge you through the nose for what ever they make from it.

Lyme
03-16-07, 02:14 PM
I'm not saying don't do it. Just ensuring people are realistic about what to expect from their participation.

OWA
03-19-07, 09:25 AM
Just ran across an article on the folding@home stuff on the PS3 when looking for info on the next system update.

IGN has a nice article on the folding@home and how the PS3 version will work. Sounds pretty cool and also explains why there is a need for it. Here are a couple of blurbs from the article.

http://ps3.ign.com/articles/772/772947p1.html


The problem is, creating simulations that mimic microscopic, misfolding proteins takes a while. A long while. Folding@home started "distributed computing," a program that sent packets of data to participating computers for computation, in October 2000, and it took two years to calculate the initial Alzheimer's information, Pande said.

So, they're basically hoping that if all the PS3 users run this occasionally, they'll help speed up the process a lot.

...researchers hope to accomplish what once took them years in a matter of months.

nemecb
03-19-07, 09:50 AM
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?holding=;&db=PubMed&cmd=search&term=Vijay%20Pande

The guy in charge has actually published a number of articles already. Nothing specific to any diseases, but apparently a lot of it is applicable in a lot of different areas. Or at least that's what I'm told by a guy who works in a similar area, since I wouldn't understand most of that.:)

And just so we're clear, if you're running Folding because you're expecting monetary rewards then you've completely missed the point. I'll leave the pharmaceutical company debate for another time, but Folding is a volunteer activity and the reward will hopefully be that it saves the life of one of your loved ones someday.