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Cracking a Tough AIDS Research Puzzle: Boffins 0, US Gamers 1. Rock On!

Discussion in 'News' started by qubit, Sep 20, 2011.

  1. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    An AIDS protein folding puzzle has stumped scientists for a decade, but US gamers cracked it in a mere three weeks! This was achieved by combining the brute force logic and speed of the digital computer, with the lateral thinking of the distinctly fuzzy human brain. To achieve this, a distributed computing application called Foldit was used, which involved gamers solving individual puzzles in a competitive atmosphere. This amazing merger of minds and machine over the internet creates a sort of distributed "cybernetic organism", which combines the strengths of biological and silicon computers into something far more powerful than either alone.

    [​IMG]

    The puzzles are that of protein folding, which is highly complex. So much so in fact, that even supercomputers find them tough to chew through, which is why the Stanford Folding@Home project was started a decade ago. The application transforms science problems into three dimensional puzzle challenges for gamers to solve. Within days, a workable model emerged from the challenges, which the boffins scientists were able to refine further into an accurate model of the enzyme's structure. This knowledge opens doors for scientists to design drugs that are effective at stopping HIV from multiplying.

    Seth Cooper, a co-creator of Foldit, said:


    Source: Fox News
  2. Bow

    Bow

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    I saw this yesterday :rockout:
    Crunching for Team TPU
  3. BUCK NASTY

    BUCK NASTY F@H Mod & 4P Enthusiust Staff Member

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    Ah, folding at it's best! This is what we do it for guy's!!!!

    :toast::toast::toast:
    Jegergrim and qubit say thanks.
    Crunching for Team TPU
  4. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    I really wanted to add a poll to this, but I don't have the permissions on news threads. :(

    I want to ask if TPU members want to start a project like this, much like we have F@H and WCG. I reckon it would rock. :rockout:
  5. Jegergrim

    Jegergrim New Member

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    :D Things suchas this great achievement could bring alot new "gamers" into foldit, keep it up indeed
    qubit says thanks.
  6. m4gicfour

    m4gicfour

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    A much better way to access the untapped potential of human resource present in computer games than in-game ads.
    qubit says thanks.
  7. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    Oh god yes. Well put.
  8. D4S4

    D4S4

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    this means that some diseases could quite literally get PWNT. :nutkick:
  9. derwin75

    derwin75

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    I heard about this 2 days ago.....PC Gamers Rules!!!!!
  10. hat

    hat Maximum Overclocker

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    So folding@home did indeed contribute to this, then?
    Crunching for Team TPU
  11. [H]@RD5TUFF

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    Now if only more people would get behind distributed computing think how much progress we could make.
  12. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    this one wasnt actually folding@home, it was a game that got humans to do the same work via a 3D game instead of pure math.
  13. Rowsol

    Rowsol

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    Pimpin.
  14. Delta6326

    Delta6326

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    Foldit is so much fun, once I start I can't stop!
  15. DonInKansas

    DonInKansas

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    I wonder if they called AIDS ghey and a n00b after it was finished. :roll:
  16. Completely Bonkers New Member

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    Ok, so now I have a valid reason to upgrade my gaming rig? All in the name of science...

    DeresiaL, that is a very interesting (educational and inspiring) video http://www.newsytype.com/11536-aids-protein-foldit/. And welcome to TPU.

    It is worth the 20minutes to watch that video. Get through the first 3 minutes where your first reaction might just be 'why is this lady wearing a silly dress and awful boots' and you will see she is a smart and interesting academic who has done some research into "gaming communities". Good stuff.

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