Fairleigh Dickinson University Joins Computer Network to Help Change the World
Teaneck, NJ (November 6, 2006)—Millions of personal computers sit idly on desks and in homes worldwide. What if each of the world’s estimated 650 million PCs could be linked to focus on humanity’s most pressing issues?
To make this vision a reality, Fairleigh Dickinson University has partnered with World Community Grid, joining the IBM Corporation and a group of more than 220 companies, associations, foundations, nonprofits and academic institutions. The World Community Grid safely connects many individual computers, creating a large system with massive computational power that far exceeds the power of a few super computers. This network is able to process research data quickly, helping scientists find solutions to important issues.
The World Community Grid works by connecting computers across the globe to one central server. When an individual computer becomes idle, it requests data on a specific project from the server. The computer performs computations on the data, sends the results back to the server and requests a new piece of work. It will continue to process data long as it remains idle. Since the work is split into small pieces that can be processed simultaneously, research time is reduced from years to months.
In its first year, World Community Grid ran the Human Proteome Folding Project, which provided scientists with data on how individual proteins within the human body affect health. The calculations processed by idle computers gave scientists descriptions of 120,000 protein domains that are critical to human wellbeing, and enabled them to develop new cures for diseases like lyme disease, malaria and tuberculosis. Without the benefit of this free grid technology, it would have taken 5 years to get these results, compared with just 12 months on World Community Grid.
On November 21, 2005, World Community Grid launched FightAIDS@Home. This program, which is sponsored by The Scripps Research Institute, uses computer calculations to identify new candidate drugs that may stop the HIV virus from maturing, helping to prevent the onset of AIDS and prolonging life.
On July 20, 2006, World Community Grid launched a new effort that will assist in cancer research. The Help Defeat Cancer Project will use World Community Grid to analyze tissue microarrays (TMA), a new investigative tool that will ultimately help doctors select proper treatments and provide accurate prognosis for cancer patients.
For more information on World Community Grid and you or your organization can get involved, visit www.worldcommunitygrid.org. To find out more about how FDU is helping World Community Grid, contact Neal M. Sturm, Associate Vice President and Chief Information Officer, at firstname.lastname@example.org.