Sony Dumping PS3 Support for Folding@home

October 22, 2012 -

It looks like Sony has decided that it will no longer support Stanford University's Folding@home distributed computing project via PlayStation 3. According to a post in the European PlayStation Blog, Sony will kill the ability for current and future PS3 owners to contribute part of the CPU power to the project with the next firmware update scheduled to go live sometime later this month. Sony didn't really give a reason why they have decided to do this...

In case you didn't know, Folding@home used collective computing power of networked computers and PS3s to simulate protein folding, with the goal of helping researchers study diseases such as Alzheimer's and cancer.

"The PS3 system was a game changer for Folding@home, as it opened the door for new methods and new processors, eventually also leading to the use of GPUs," Stanford's Folding@home research lead Vijay Pande said.

Over 15 million users took part in the project, contributing a total of over 100 million computation hours.

Source: Polygon



Re: Sony Dumping PS3 Support for Folding@home

Pure speculation, I wonder if it could be a warranty issue that's prompting it. I've run into a handful of PCs over the years with overheating damage due to running programs like this at 100% for extended periods with substandard cooling, blocked vents, or broken fans.

It's a fringe case scenario, and requires other things to be wrong, but could it be enough for Sony to decide it's a pattern and that killing the program is an easier solution than trying to get people to stop piling stuff on top of their boxes while it's running?

Re: Sony Dumping PS3 Support for Folding@home

PS3 haz CPU power? *runs and hides*

Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Let's renegotiate them.




Re: Sony Dumping PS3 Support for Folding@home

It does. In fact, when it was released, it had the single best ratio of computing power to price on the market, such that some organizations were buying them up to use as computing clusters. (At least until support for Other OS was removed.)

Re: Sony Dumping PS3 Support for Folding@home

This is true. I recall the US Air Force demonstrating a cluster of PS3s operating as a Super Computer.

Papa Midnight

Re: Sony Dumping PS3 Support for Folding@home

The 15 million users is across all platforms (Windows, Mac, Linux, PS3), not just the PS3.  Also, computation hours isn't the best unit of measurement, considering how much the range of computing power between devices.


Still, it's a shame that Sony is pulling the plug.  PS3 users contributed a lot to the project.


Anyone reading this article should try folding with their PC, every little bit helps!

Re: Sony Dumping PS3 Support for Folding@home

Indeed. I recall at one point, PS3 users alone made up for more than 50% of the total computational power.

Papa Midnight

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