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Science Technology

CERN To Tap Unused Desktop Power To Help Find Higgs Boson 118

hypnosec writes "Research institute CERN has launched a new project to tap into the extra computing power from the public for its Large Hadron Collider atom smashing project. According to the organization, the LHC@home project will, for the first time, allow volunteers to aid in high-energy collisions of protons in CERN's Large Hadron Collider and in turn helping physicists to unravel the mysteries of the origin of the universe"
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CERN To Tap Unused Desktop Power To Help Find Higgs Boson

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  • Looks good, but... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by arth1 ( 260657 ) on Wednesday August 10, 2011 @01:40PM (#37046440) Homepage Journal

    Have to use Oracle VirtualBox? Have to run with 32-bit compatibility libraries? Sorry, those are showstoppers.
    Let me run it in the sandbox of my choice, and I'll invest electricity in running this. Otherwise, no.

  • Re:default (Score:4, Insightful)

    by blair1q ( 305137 ) on Wednesday August 10, 2011 @01:41PM (#37046448) Journal

    Only if they also create a portal to the deposit window at my bank and start pumping their profits into it.

    I only work for free when I enable it.

  • Re:default (Score:4, Insightful)

    by vux984 ( 928602 ) on Wednesday August 10, 2011 @02:01PM (#37046702)

    Am I the only one who thinks programs like this and/or folding@home and/or seti@home should be installed by the manufacture and enabled by default?

    Those @home projects cost between roughly $3 and $30/month per unit to run depending on what equipment you are using (celeron laptop vs i7 gaming rig vs ps3 vs old pentium 4 vs SLI GPUs...) , what the electricity rates are, and whether you end up running running air conditioning more to offset the extra heat you are unknowingly generating.

    Me... I have 4 computers always on, but I live in a cooler part of Canada where the heat isn't a huge problem and the electricity is pretty cheap... but they are performance oriented hardware and it would still cost me over $25/month to run @home on all 4.

    In some American state's and several european countries electricity is triple or quadruple what I pay. And the extra heat would have to be countered by running the air conditioning more in some places. (In others it might let you run the heater less).

    But the point is, there is a very real hidden cost to this stuff, and without full disclosure of the actual cost, these projects are a bit offensive to me.

    I have no issue with someone running the software with informed consent, but the true value in dollars that is actually being contributed unwittingly on these projects is appalling.

    They are often installed by "kids" or "employees" who do not know the cost, and do not pay it. And the cost is passed on to the parent or employer who have little ability to detect it... its not like a line item on their credit card. Its just a higher kwH reading which is pretty inscrutable.

    Preinstalled and enabled by the manufacturers would be tantamount to theft. Why not just subscribe them to World of Warcraft and AOL, and then roll the monthly charges into their property taxes lump sum assessement? Its about as honest.

I was playing poker the other night... with Tarot cards. I got a full house and 4 people died. -- Steven Wright