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Log Onto Facebook, Contribute to Scientific Research

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Researchers at Victoria University of Wellington, the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, and Cardiff University are developing a cloud computing-based Facebook application that enables users to donate their computing resources to scientific projects.

Victoria researcher Kris Bubendorfer says integrating cloud architecture with an existing social network such as Facebook has advantages over other options, such as commercial cloud services, which some research teams use on a pay-as-you-go basis and can be very expensive.

"If we can recruit even one percent of current Facebook users to become volunteers, that will have a significant impact on resources available for research," Bubendorfer says.

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology researchers are developing rewards and incentives that will encourage Facebook users to sign on for volunteer computing while Cardiff University researchers are developing a business model to support the initiative. "Social networks offer an easy and quick way for scientists to find each other and agree to share resources for the duration of a project," Bubendorfer says.

From Victoria University of Wellington (New Zealand)
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