T Nation

Donate MIPS to Medical Research

Join a folding team and donate your MIPS (Million instructions per second) to medical reasearch. Currently (apparently) I’m working on P1808 Collagen Brodsky Amber Core.

http://folding.stanford.edu/

From the site, rather than me----
explain it :

[i]Our goal: to understand protein folding, misfolding, and related diseases

What is protein folding and how is folding linked to disease? Proteins are biology’s workhorses – its “nanomachines.” Before proteins can carry out these important functions, they assemble themselves, or “fold.” The process of protein folding, while critical and fundamental to virtually all of biology, in many ways remains a mystery.

Moreover, when proteins do not fold correctly (i.e. “misfold”), there can be serious consequences, including many well known diseases, such as Alzheimer’s, Mad Cow (BSE), CJD, ALS, Huntington’s, Parkinson’s disease, and many Cancers and cancer-related syndromes.

You can help by simply running a piece of software. Folding@Home is a distributed computing project – people from through out the world download and run software to band together to make one of the largest supercomputers in the world. Every computer makes the project closer to our goals.

Folding@Home uses novel computational methods coupled to distributed computing, to simulate problems thousands to millions of times more challenging than previously achieved. [/i]

Basically your pc runs this prog, and it uses ‘spare’ processor power to run the folding sequence. If you are just surfing the net, writing emails and using MS Word, it’ll bimble away happily in the background. But when you suddenly start playing F.E.A.R. or doing some complex algorythyms or video editing, it’ll stop and wait till you finish.

All the PC’s in use combine to make a super computer, because PC’s are powerful these days, loads working together make one super-powerful PC cluster.

It helps medical research science at the end of the day which is worthwhile. I set up an old P3 1ghz server just to run this, I think its so worthwhile. It also runs on my main PC, but as I play a lot of games its not running all the time.

More info there.

Check out the map on the folding@home link, lots of activity in Europe, UK and US but not much elsewhere. Canada isn’t doing much, maybe Vroom can get his PC busy.

Cool link. I’m sending it to my friends.

I have installed the software but I could not find how to dedicate it to a specific project. How did you set up a specific item?

Thanks in advance!

You download the programme, extract it, desktop will do, then assign yourself a user name and join a team if you have one in mind, you don’t have to, the teams do stuff like seeing who can get the highest score or something. But you don’t need to.

Then you just run it, it assigns you to a particular project, you can see from the title on the screen. If you close the prog with the x it keeps running you have to right click ‘quit’ on the tool bar.

I’m totally willing to sign up, but is there any security risk with this?

Is some 15 year old shithead going to ruin my computer if I do?

[quote]Dr. Stig wrote:
You download the programme, extract it, desktop will do, then assign yourself a user name and join a team if you have one in mind, you don’t have to, the teams do stuff like seeing who can get the highest score or something. But you don’t need to.

Then you just run it, it assigns you to a particular project, you can see from the title on the screen. If you close the prog with the x it keeps running you have to right click ‘quit’ on the tool bar.[/quote]

Fantastic idea. I’ve downloaded the software and have it running.

Tone

too bad even with all the computers in the world the calculations involved would take a millenia, haha.

there are just too many atoms and electrons =(

[quote]doogie wrote:
I’m totally willing to sign up, but is there any security risk with this?

Is some 15 year old shithead going to ruin my computer if I do?[/quote]

There is no risk really, less risk than general web browsing, downloading the odd programme etc. No reported probs from all the users, and there are loads.

I recc a decent anti-virus prog like NOD32 rather than stuff like Norton or McAfee which are bordering on useless / being a liability, and a decent firewall.

Your firewall should ask you to let the prog connect which you should allow.

[quote]consumer wrote:
too bad even with all the computers in the world the calculations involved would take a millenia, haha.

there are just too many atoms and electrons =([/quote]

That’s true, but not representative of the big picture,

Quote from site :

What has the project completed so far? We have been able to fold several proteins in the 5-10 microsecond time range with experimental validation of our folding kinetics. This is a fundamental advance over previous work. Scientific papers detailing our results can be found at papers.html. We are now moving to other important proteins used in structural biology studies of folding as well as proteins involved in disease. There are many peer-reviewed and published in top journals (Science, Nature, Nature Structural Biology, PNAS, JMB, etc) which have resulted from FAH. Current, more than all of the other major distributed computing projects combined!

I signed up.

Sure what the hell.

Thanks. Unfortunately the molecule I was working on took forever to get past the 1.001% mark. So I tried finding smaller assigments.

For a good list of alternatives:

BOINC is the best interface I have seen so far. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berkeley_Open_Infrastructure_for_Network_Computing

Currently working on Predictor@home. Currently 45% of my first project has been completed, and it should be over in 2 hours.

Overall, a fantastic idea. It’s all good!

[quote]MrChill wrote:
Thanks. Unfortunately the molecule I was working on took forever to get past the 1.001% mark. So I tried finding smaller assigments.

For a good list of alternatives:

BOINC is the best interface I have seen so far. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berkeley_Open_Infrastructure_for_Network_Computing

Currently working on Predictor@home. Currently 45% of my first project has been completed, and it should be over in 2 hours.

Overall, a fantastic idea. It’s all good![/quote]

Much of it depends on your PC. I just ordered a Conroe Core Duo CPU which outperforms any previous Intel and beats every AMD currently. But its all good, it means I’ll fold more.

[quote]Dr. Stig wrote:
Much of it depends on your PC. I just ordered a Conroe Core Duo CPU which outperforms any previous Intel and beats every AMD currently. But its all good, it means I’ll fold more.[/quote]

Cool. And keeping you old computer as a (networked) background folder could be another way of adding folding power too. Just another way of ‘recycling’ computers.