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Use Folding@home to Help Scientists Find Cures for Diseases

Download of the Day: Folding@home

To me, part of being a geek is being altruistic, whether that means recycling your gadgets or giving back by playing a game. Nothing I have done online makes me feel better than Folding@home. Folding@home is a download that you allow to run on your computer (that's it — you do pretty much nothing after that) and it uses your unused CPU power (or you can run it as a screensaver) to effectively make a supercomputer to study the folding of proteins. I may not completely understand how protein folding works (check out Wikipedia's very helpful description though), but the professors who do can use it to find cures for Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases, and certain kinds of cancers.

This noble cause was started in 2000 by Stanford University professors and was recently named the world's largest distributed computing project by Guinness World Records. And they're into trying to make it fun — they recently introduced a version for Playstation 3!

To learn how to post your favorite downloads to the Download of the Day group,

I know that this long list looks scary, but trust me, once you get the hang of it, it'll be a snap the second time around.

  1. First of all, join the Download of the Day group
  2. Click "Create and Share!" on the left hand side
  3. Choose "Blog"
  4. Give your photo a Title
  5. Leave the category as "general"
  6. Change the channel to "technology and gadgets"
  7. Add keyword(s) (for example mine for this photo was "Download of the Day")
  8. Click on the "Add Image" link below the "body" box
  9. A popup window will happen — click on "Browse" to find your image on your computer
  10. Once you have the image chosen, click "Submit"
  11. The popup will show you your image, choose size: "normal" - if you want, you can give it a title (which will show up as a caption)
  12. Click "Insert" and the popup will go away
  13. Your "body" box will now have some text in it. Leave it as is. If you want to add some text before the picture telling me why you love the download, do it before the code that has appeared.
  14. Click Submit

So join the Download of the Day group and share information about all your favorite downloads! Yours just might end up on the geeksugar homepage!

Join The Conversation
novangel novangel 8 years
Wow...this is very interesting. I think that I will give it a try. :)
Daisie Daisie 9 years
I used to run SETI at home a while back...that was fun. But this is much more meaningful. Alzheimer's runs in my family and to watch my grandmother lose more and more of herself everyday was the worst experience of my life. Thanks for the link, Geek.
chakra_healer chakra_healer 9 years
I did folding a few years ago, but did not like that my computer was always on. For those who do not mind the always on thing, it is a project that's been around a long time and there is a lot of info available online if you're interested in folding but not sure about participating yet. :)
lcterp lcterp 9 years
Very interesting...
x_juicyfruit x_juicyfruit 9 years
julieulie julieulie 9 years
I study protein folding and structure. I wish getting my Ph.D. was as simple as just putting my computer to work and me not doing anything. Ha, ha.
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