Update on AQUA@home and a white paper

AQUA@home launched its alpha trial last week and it has far surpassed my expectations on several levels. The community of folks who contribute cycles to the many large-scale scientific computations going on right now are awesome and have helped a lot in getting things right. We have already had some results come in and we are already doing about 20-30x the number of computations we were doing prior to the external launch.

I wrote a short intro white paper to introduce the science of AQUA@home, written for a non-specialist audience with lots of links to the literature for folks who want to look deeper. If you have suggestions for making this document better let me know and I’ll make an edit list and revise it.

Here is the white paper.

5 thoughts on “Update on AQUA@home and a white paper”

1. Hey Geordie, here’s a page with the visualization I made that might work for the screensaver: http://www.neildickson.com/hypercube/ I’ll email you with further details tomorrow when I’ve got internet again (it’s down in my house, so I’ll go to the library).

2. Thanks :D
It turned out way better than expected, (albeit 3 days and 2 all-nighters later than expected). As a node is rotated up to the top, I can often tell which dimension is being flipped from the pattern of the points in motion. As an example, when dimension 11 (bit 11, the highest) is flipped, that’s when the two entire sides swap, since the 12D hypercube is effectively two 11D hypercubes connected by that extra dimension, and they swap places when the dimension is flipped. To put it more philosophically: I can see the dimensions!

The only major issue (other than integrating with BOINC if there’s no good info on that) is that it uses an ironic ton of CPU. There are a bunch of techniques I used to optimize my Code Cortex screensaver (http://www.codecortex.com/more/) that should cut the CPU time in about 8 pretty easily, plus if you reduce the size of the circles it should cut down on the time even more. However, I just realized that there is probably a simple and efficient way to do it in OpenGL (unlike the Code Cortex screensaver). I just don’t know how to use OpenGL, so hopefully either someone at D-Wave can try something out or I can convince a friend of mine to do it. :)