Monday, April 27, 2009

Folding@Home Milestone

Matt Geiman has set up our labs to participate in an important distributed computing project; Folding@Home is a project run by Stanford University that is studying how proteins fold. This research has the possibility of helping us understand how protein folding affects many diseases. You can read more at

Our big news is that, of 157,000 participating teams, our team has broken into the top 1000! We are currently 905th! Check our progress with up-to-date statistics.

However, we can do better than that! If you'd like to set up your machine to be a part of our team, it's really easy:

There are folding clients available for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS's, as well as Playstation 3's. So even if some people don't leave their computer on but they have a PS3, its easy enough to let the game console fold.

Our team name is Shippensburg University Computer Science Department
Our team number is 163348

The Folding@Home site is here:

It can be a little hard to navigate, so here are some useful links that can take a while to find:

To register your username so that no one else claims your work as their own, you can get a passkey emailed to you here:

You can check if your desired username is in use here:

I'll keep you posted on our progress!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Programming Team Rocked Slippery Rock

This weekend the programming team traveled to Slippery Rock to complete in the annual PACISE programming contest. This is where the teams from the state system schools compete. We took three teams. Dane Howard, Logan Kennedy, and Rob Koch were the only team to solve 6 problems and came in first. Casey Boone, Phil Diffenderfer, and Brian Lindsay were the fastest team to solve 5 problems, so they came in second. Tristan Dalius, Matt Hydock, and A.J. Marx were the fasted team to solve two problems and came in fifth.

For our first team, this is a dramatic improvement over the contest at Dickinson the previous weekend. A couple of strategic mis-steps caused us to fall from first to fourth place in the last 30 minutes of the competition. It's a great example of how strategy plays a roll in these events.

Our second team gives us great hope for the future; it includes a freshman (Brian) and a sophomore (Phil) who, if they keep practicing, hold great potential for regional competitions over the next couple of years.

I'll work on getting a picture - took the camera and forgot to use it!