Monday, November 17, 2008

Foldit

Foldit is a computer game that was released in May of this year that allows amateurs to compete against, and collaborate with, specialists to design protein structures. Introductory levels teach the general governing concepts that users must understand before moving on to design complicated, potentially useful molecules. This is an interesting example of the potential power of distributed computing. Human brains currently manipulate three dimensional structures much better than computers. It is hoped that by studying how humans solve puzzles better computer algorithms will be devised. The YouTube video below gives a nice overview of the game.

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