Distributed computing is a technique for using free CPU space on a WAN for performing massive calculations that would normally cost millions on leased bandwidth of super computers (eg. CRay). I got into Seti for a while, a distributed computing concept that uses your CPU to help find Alien signals in captured time packets from an array in South America. It was cool but I got sick of the screen saver so I blew it away. Anyway, last Wednesday, www.grid.org
release an application that utilizes the Distributed Computing concept to find a cure for Small Pox. This facinated me because I could actually get somewhere by donating my unused CPU time. I downloaded the application and setup an accout on www.grid.org
and was pleased with the application but didn't like the idea that it ran all the time. In the prefernces menu I set it to "run only as a screen saver" and then removed the application from my startup folder. Right now, the application only loads when the screen saver comes on and unloads as soon as there is activity. It's a stable app (from what i've seen so far) and the screen saver is cool once it gets going. It builds a molecular matrix piece by piece in a window and spins it around so you can see it grow. After so many calculations, it uploads the packet to www.grid.org
and downloads news instructions. Again, it's non-intrusive so it only works when your not using the computer.