Get Seti for massive computing project

The creator of the world's largest distributed computing project SETI@home was in Australia this week spruiking local participation in his supercomputing vision.

Speaking at the Australian Centre for Advanced Computing and Communications in Sydney, SETI@home founder David Gedye revealed fundraising efforts were under way to establish a data collection centre out of Parkes (in central west NSW) which would operate as a local Australian chapter for the project.

"We are still awaiting for the final go-ahead for the Southern SETI@home project which will allow us to observe much more," he said.

SETI@home is a scientific experiment that uses Internet-connected computers and is most famous for its involvement in the 'Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI).'

But unfortunately for X-Files fans there has been no contact with "aliens so far", Gedye joked.

The distributed computing project, which has been driven by public participation, is the world's most powerful supercomputer. SETI@home is operating at 66 teraflops - well ahead of the most powerful commercial supercomputer, NEC's Earth Simulator which operates at 35 teraflops.

Established in 1999 when it attracted 100,000 participants in its first month, Gedye said grid computing was one of the catalysts for the project, which has about half a million active users.

Calling it "public participation science", Gedye said it is these kinds of projects that can change the way science is viewed.

A few years ago, he said, many companies were formed to try and adopt the SETI@home idea as a business model.

"This was a failed grid business model as it expected people to donate their resources for commercial gain; the current grid business model involves selling platform software to big business," Gedye said.

Referring to software infrastructure, he said the project will move to a new platform launching SETI@home 2 in the next few months.

"SETI will be moving to the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing (BOINC) platform which is open source, more secure, fault-tolerant, and can support multiple projects," Gedye said. "The current SETI implementation has had problems with hackers transmitting false readings."

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Rodney Gedda

Computerworld
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?