'World Community Grid' seeks to harness unused computers
It aims to quash some of the world's most challenging problems
Computerworld - IBM and officials from some of the world's leading science, education and philanthropic organizations yesterday launched a global grid computing project aimed at harnessing unused global computing power to help solve a variety of health issues and other scientific problems.
In an announcement, IBM said the World Community Grid project calls on home and corporate PC users to install a 1.5MB software program that allows their unused computer cycles to work on critical scientific research. The software is available from the project's Web site and works on computers running Windows 98, ME, 2000 and XP.
The new grid will be used for medical research to help unlock genetic codes that could help find cures for AIDS/HIV, Alzheimer's disease and cancer, according to the group. It will also be used to conduct research to improve the forecasting of natural disasters and find new ways to protect the world's food and water supplies.
The first project to be tackled is the Human Proteome Folding Project, which aims to identify the proteins that make up the Human Proteome, which could help lead to cures for diseases such as malaria and tuberculosis. The proteome project is sponsored by the Seattle-based Institute for Systems Biology, a nonprofit research institute dedicated to the study and application of systems biology.
Future projects to use the grid will be selected by a World Community Grid Advisory Board, which will evaluate proposals from leading research, public and nonprofit organizations. Five to six projects a year are expected to use the grid, according to the group.
"World Community Grid will enable researchers around the globe to gather and analyze unprecedented quantities of data to help address important global issues, including public health issues," advisory board member Elaine Gallin said in a statement. Gallin, who is also the program director for medical research at the New York-based Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, said the grid project "promises to harness grid computer technology to address complex clinical research questions."
Other organizations represented on the grid's advisory board include the National Institutes of Health, the Markle Foundation, the Mayo Clinic, Oxford University, the World Health Organization and the United Nations Development Programme.
Ken King, vice president of grid computing at IBM, said the World Community Grid will showcase IBM's grid technologies, which the company donated to the project.
The effort uses Grid MP software from Austin-based United Devices Inc. and an assortment of IBM hardware, including an IBM eServer p630 server running IBM's AIX operating system, 12 IBM x345 Intel-based servers running Linux, and IBM Shark Enterprise Storage Server systems running DB2
- Best iPhone, iPad Business Apps for 2014
- 14 Tech Conventions You Should Attend in 2014
- 10 Desktop Apps to Power Your Windows PC
- How to Add New Job Skills Without Going Back to School
- Slideshow: 7 security mistakes people make with their mobile device
- iOS vs. Android: Which is more secure?
- 11 sure signs you've been hacked
Red Hat Enterprise Linux - The Original Cloud Operating System
Linux adoption is growing against a number of measures, such as the
number of supercomputers that run Linux and the size of the contributing...
- OpenStack Hype vs. Reality: CIO Quick Pulse Open-source architecture can enable IT departments to build infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) clouds running on standard hardware.
- Maximize Strategic Flexibility by Building an Open Hybrid Cloud Choosing how to build a cloud is the biggest strategic decision IT leaders will make this decade. It determines their organizational competitiveness, flexibility,...
- ESG: The IBM FlashSystem 840: Technical Evolution to Deliver Business Value In this whitepaper, you will learn how this high-speed storage technology has tremendous potential to support I/O-intensive and/or latency-sensitive applications.
- Meg Whitman presents Unlocking IT with Big Data During this Web Event you will hear Meg Whitman, President and CEO, HP discuss HAVEn - the #1 Big Data platform, as well...
- Cloud Knowledge Vault Learn how your organization can benefit from the scalability, flexibility, and performance that the cloud offers through the short videos and other resources... All Cloud Computing White Papers | Webcasts