BOINC in Retrospect

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Profile David Anderson
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Message 108463 - Posted: 15 Jun 2022, 8:53:46 UTC

Read BOINC in Retrospect, an essay on the history of BOINC.
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fryfat

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Message 108479 - Posted: 16 Jun 2022, 2:44:11 UTC - in response to Message 108463.  

Is boinc ending?
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boboviz
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Message 108494 - Posted: 16 Jun 2022, 14:35:24 UTC - in response to Message 108479.  

Is boinc ending?


No. David Anderson is no longer very active in developing the project.
But there are other guys on the road.
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Profile David Anderson
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Message 108792 - Posted: 28 Jun 2022, 23:12:28 UTC - in response to Message 108494.  

Actually I'm still active. I'm working on BOINC Central, which is described in the essay.
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CElliott

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Message 108969 - Posted: 5 Jul 2022, 22:58:35 UTC - in response to Message 108463.  

David,
You are too hard on yourself. The BOINC and SETI@Home projects went well for many years and while you were in charge. What wrecked both projects was climate change. Many influential people started asking, after many years of work, many thousands of dollars spent, and many billions of kilowatts of electricity consumed, where are the results?

Read Stark, R. (2005). The Victory of Reason, New York: Random House. Then, like NASA or the Defense Department, position your efforts as bringing progress to society, and as helping people free themselves from the tyrannies of poverty and ignorance. National cultures are like tectonic plates: When two such cultures meet one inevitably subsumes itself under the other. ET is all grown up now. Do you and the rest of the people on Earth want to be working for him? For free?

What ever happened to Rom Walton? What is the point of working for a university for many years, probably at relatively low wages, and not being encouraged or forced to take courses on the side so as to enable one to make contributions at a higher level in their or another organization?

"Everybody whoever made it had a mentor" is the title of a popular Harvard Business Review article and close to the truth. It took years to prepare people like Douglas MacArthur (Army Chief of Staff and eventually Supreme Commander in the Pacific and Military Governor of Japan) and Dwight D. Eisenhower (Supreme Commander in Europe, First NATO Commander, President of Columbia University, and President of the United States) for the highly specialized jobs they held. MacArthur was a product of a General Fox, a leader in the Spanish-American War, and MacArthur in turn developed Eisenhower into the person he became by forcing him to study what it took to win a European war.
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Drago75

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Message 109126 - Posted: 9 Jul 2022, 19:38:52 UTC - in response to Message 108969.  

It is sad to read that the original idea of BOINC did not work out as expected. What I don't get are the security concerns potential project owners may have concerning their data being run on private home pcs. Since there is a quorum on the results on a randomly chosen different pc it would be next to impossible to sneak in any fake positive result. Surely the most promising candidates for further research would be run again on their own hosts just to make sure. In terms of data security BOINC works very much like the TOR network If they would trust their data on one of the big cloud computing companies such as Microsoft or Amazon instead they must realize that those companies have the potential to read out all the data being run on their systems. It is a question if the data really gets encrypted as they claim. Those companies are also valuable targets for hackers.

If open to public research is difficult to continue maybe it is time to think about offering a payed service which would work similar to a cloud computing company. Of course it had to be a lot cheaper than the competition. Maybe a small incentive to the crunchers in Gridcoin or whatever. Doesn't have to much as most of us crunch only for stars (thank you Sebastien!) and badges anyway.

Maybe more drug makers could be convinced to use BOINC for their developments if they don't have to publish their results. In return they could agree to sell any new drug which was discovered through BOINC at a reduced price.

Anyway thank you David so far for so many years of dedication to the project!

Tom
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Jim1348

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Message 109128 - Posted: 9 Jul 2022, 20:02:52 UTC - in response to Message 108463.  
Last modified: 9 Jul 2022, 20:04:14 UTC

That is too much of an insider history; accurate no doubt, but not the main issue.

The two real problems are:

(1) BOINC is too complicated to use (for the developers mainly, not the users). That is mainly because of the scheduler, which tries to be all things to all people.
Just do what the Folding@home client does, and download a new work unit as the last one is finishing. You only need to add the ability to choose multiple projects, not just one.

(2) The other problem is that as the cost of computing has fallen, more research labs can do it in-house. That is especially true with the advent of AI. That is of course outside of the control of BOINC, except that BOINC could explore its use as a training resource for the in-house computing.

I agree that Dave is being too hard on himself. He has done an incredible job.
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ranaday789

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Message 109780 - Posted: 9 Sep 2022, 6:37:09 UTC - in response to Message 108494.  

there will always be a need for advancement. I think distributed computing will live on for a long time coming. there will always be research to be done, and computing power needed for said research. as we move further along into the technological age, it is going to be even more important and relevant than any point in time before. I think the need for it will only become more significant. will BOINC forever be the primary and most popular platform? probably not. but distributed computing as a whole, I feel, will always be needed.

projects will come and go, but there will always be a need.
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Message boards : News : BOINC in Retrospect

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