My Distributed Computing


Larry “Harris” Taylor, Ph. D.

Diving Safety Coordinator

University of Michigan

Ann Arbor, Michigan

 Email:  divegeek


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Distributed Computing  

SETI at Home 

Classic SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) @ home was a global collection of people and institutions who donated time on their computers to assist in analyzing radio astronomy data with the hopes that embedded in stellar radio frequency radiation are signals that originate from sentient beings. This involves mathematical signal analysis of enormous proportions. SETI at Home pioneered the process (Distributed Computing) of  splitting large  computational workloads into small chunks for processing by home computers; managing  downloads of data and uploads of finished computations, and finally reassembling and validating results from millions of individual computers to yield a finished determination. This made the SETI at Home project the equivalent of a massive (more than 5.4 million contributors) parallel processing super computer. It is perhaps the best-ever example of true global cooperation. The project terminated in December of 2005. At its termination, my contribution (from May, 1999 to December, 2005) was 17,171 work units (The equivalent of 14.13 years of cpu time). This was more than 99.72 % of all participants.


Classic SETI at home has evolved into BOINC  (Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing) that uses a common client to manage multiple distributed computing projects. So, users can contribute computer processing time to a variety of  projects including molecular protein folding, climate analysis, stellar gravitation and several projects directly related to medical research. Researchers can now consider computationally intense problems far beyond the cost and computing power of any single laboratory.  SETI@Home is my primary project with  Einstein@Home (Gravitational wave detection) as my secondary project.  I also contributed to the now retired Predictor at home (Predicting protein 3D structure from an amino acid sequence). In order to keep my idle machines busy when my primary projects have no work available, I also contribute to MilkyWay@Home  (Building 3-D map of the Milky Way Galaxy),  Docking@Home (Ligand Interactions with Proteins) , and Rosetta@home (examination of 3-D shape of proteins).

I was the SETI at Home  "User of the day" for December 12, 2008.

My Detailed BOINC Stats: SETI     Einstein     MilkyWay    Rosetta      BOINC Totals 


U of MI Team Stats: SETI   Einstein   Total Member Contributions  Team Projects



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