idea - embeddable boinc

Message boards : Web interfaces : idea - embeddable boinc
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Joao Fernandes

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Joined: 18 Jul 08
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Message 18616 - Posted: 18 Jul 2008, 16:47:05 UTC

Hey you guys,

I just had this probably dummy idea. I was wondering if it could be technically possible to have an web "embeddable" boinc client, something like an embedded player that used a small percentage of cpu power of everyone that accessed a website to participate in the grid. So, no server side use (at least for the one where the website is hosted at), just client use.

The website author could have a tool to select the project, the style of the embeddable player, etc and then could add the generated code to his page. This could be a way of scaling boinc and use the network in another way.

I'm not a IT guy so maybe I'm talking non-sense.

Joao (from Portugal)
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Joined: 19 Jan 07
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Message 18945 - Posted: 30 Jul 2008, 21:49:44 UTC - in response to Message 18616.  

The only sane ways are using Flash or Java. Javascript is *way* too slow to do any useful computation, and hangs the webpage while processing.

That means projects would have to rewrite their code in such languages.

In addition, the computation would be restarted every time a user clicks a link. It would be hard to save state every *second* to avoid wasting CPU time.
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Brian Stinar

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Joined: 9 Nov 08
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Message 21175 - Posted: 9 Nov 2008, 8:44:12 UTC - in response to Message 18945.  

Hey Joao,

I was JUST thinking about this.

Other than the fact that anything web-based will be much, much slower than something compiled for a native system, I was thinking that Flash's floating point number representation would present a problem.

However, according to "The ActionScript 3.0 Bible" AS3 provides IEEE 754 double-precision 64 bit floating-point numbers (a C 'double', right?).

Anyways, I thought a web-based computing resource would be something interesting and quite possibly very useful. I find myself in a situation quite often sitting at a public computer where I would not feel comfortable (or able) to install the BOINC client, but the complete and total use of the machines processor would be appropriate during the time I am browsing the internet, working on a paper or completing other work on the machine.

With regards to saving state every second, or before a user clicks on a link, I do not see that as a necessary condition because the embedded BOINC could run in another tab or another instance of the browser. However, Nicolas is correct about the user not being able to navigate away from the BOINC window, but they could navigate with another window (or tab).

I've briefly looked through the documentation and haven't seen anything like this. I'm checking out the BOINC SVN repository looking through the code to see what implementing the BOINC API would take in ActionScript. If you're a coder (not IT guy = most likely not), let me know if you want to mess with this. Until I go through the API, I have no idea how herculean of a task this actually will be. Nicolas is also correct about the need for projects to re-write their code in ActionScript if this were to happen...

Let me know if you guys have any resources related to this, or have an idea of an existing similar project.

Thanks a lot,

-Brian J. Stinar-
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Message boards : Web interfaces : idea - embeddable boinc

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