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Exa-Scale Volunteer Computing

Dr. David P. Anderson
U.C. Berkeley Space Sciences Laboratory

November 19th, 2009
JEC 3117, 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Refreshments at 3:30 p.m.


Peta-scale computing was first achieved not by supercomputers, clusters, grids, or clouds, but by volunteers: first the 40,000 Sony Playstation 3 game consoles running Folding@home, and more recently by the BOINC network of 600,000 PCs. This achievement is just a waypoint: volunteer computing offers a feasible near-term path to the next three orders of magnitude: Exa-scale. This will involve GPUs and multi-core CPUs, and perhaps the energy-efficient processors in mobile devices.


Dr. David P. Anderson received an MA in Mathematics and a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. From 1985 to 1992 he served on the faculty of the U.C. Berkeley Computer Science Department. His research areas include volunteer computing, distributed systems, operating systems, realtime and multimedia systems, computer graphics, and computer music. Since 1998 he has directed SETI@home, a pioneering volunteer computing project. He leads the BOINC project, which develops widely-used middleware for volunteer computing. He is also involved in technology for distributed thinking and for large-scale web-based training and education.

Last updated: November 3, 2009