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Computer Games, Distributed Computing, and Life Extension – Video by G. Stolyarov II

Computer Games, Distributed Computing, and Life Extension – Video by G. Stolyarov II

Imagine if it were possible to help cure disease and lengthen human lifespans simply by playing one’s computer games of choice. Here, Mr. Stolyarov describes a concept for doing just that, and he welcomes efforts from any of you to help bring it about.

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– “Computer Games, Distributed Computing, and Life Extension” – Article by G. Stolyarov II – The Rational Argumentator
Article and discussion on
Mr. Stolyarov’s Page of Distributed Computing Statistics
World Community Grid
Human Proteome Folding
Help Conquer Cancer
– “Public Solves Protein Structure” – Jef Akst – The Scientist – September 18, 2011
– “ALS Cause and Protein-Folding Prediction – Thoughts on Two Impressive Scientific Discoveries ” – Video by G. Stolyarov II – September 20, 2011

Computer Games, Distributed Computing, and Life Extension – Article by G. Stolyarov II

Computer Games, Distributed Computing, and Life Extension – Article by G. Stolyarov II

The New Renaissance Hat
G. Stolyarov II
February 26, 2013

Imagine if it were possible to help cure disease and lengthen human lifespans simply by playing one’s computer games of choice. Here, I describe a concept for doing just that, and I welcome efforts from any readers to help bring it about.

To make a practical, concrete difference in accelerating the advent of radical human life extension, one of the most powerful contributions a layman (non-biologist, non-doctor, non-engineer) can make is to donate idle computer time to distributed computing projects focused on biomedical research. Immensely promising distributed computing endeavors include Rosetta@home, Folding@home, and World Community Grid’s Human Proteome Folding and Help Conquer Cancer projects.  I am a major participant in many of these projects. (I rank in the 98.6th percentile for all distributed computing users by total credit and in the 99.5th percentile by recent average credit.) My computer runs these projects almost nonstop, and I have even made several upgrades, partly to enhance my contribution.  Distributed computing enables scientific research to occur at rates and scales previously inconceivable. Researchers utilize thousands of computers worldwide to perform incredible numbers of complex calculations that they could not have processed in their labs alone.

Billions of computers now exist, and it seems so easy to just download a distributed computing client and let it run while the computer is idle. The computer owner does not need to be technically knowledgeable about the field of research in order to make a positive and direct contribution. Yet participation in distributed computing projects is still orders of magnitude below where it should be. For instance, as of February 23, 2013, Folding@home has 1,674,431 all-time donors of computer resources; the front page suggests that 167,833 computers are currently active in the project. Rosetta@home has 355,661 total donors, while World Community Grid has 401,270. The number of people worldwide who care about advancing medical research is surely far larger than this.

 Yet even an easy task like installing a distributed computing client may be beyond the comfort zone of many people with busy, often hectic, lives. If these people take time out of their day for activities not related to their primary occupations, they will do so because they find those activities entertaining, relaxing, or both. Computer games are an immensely popular example; they directly engage hundreds of millions of people worldwide for hundreds of billions of hours every year. If this level of contribution were made to distributed computing projects, we would see the pace of research accelerate tenfold or more.

There is already one game, FoldIt, that attempts to utilize human creativity to directly address one challenge related to life extension: the prediction of protein-folding configurations. FoldIt’s users have even had some success where computer algorithms have not. However, FoldIt’s gameplay is not for everyone, just like any particular genre of computer game will attract some enthusiastic users but will leave others indifferent.

To radically increase the use of distributed computing, I recommend a new approach: the design of computer games that automatically run distributed computing projects in the background when they are played. Players would not need to acquire the game with the purpose of contributing to research projects; their primary motivation should be to enjoy the game. However, one of the marketing points in the game’s favor could be that it would enable people to make a meaningful contribution to research while they enjoyed themselves. Such games would not need to be related to the subject of the research at all; they could be about absolutely anything, and there could be numerous games of this sort made to appeal to a wide variety of consumer demographics. Indeed, creators of existing games could work on ways to link them to distributed computing clients and use this to emphasize their companies’ philanthropic side.

Each game could include an option to activate the distributed computing client even if the game is not being played. In this way, players who come to enjoy their participation in distributed computing projects could extend that participation beyond their gaming sessions. On the other hand, a lot of players would acquire the game just to play it, while being only peripherally aware of the distributed computing aspect. However, their consent to the distributed computing would be a part of the usage agreement associated with the game. They would contribute to important biomedical research by default, just like all of us contribute to the carbon dioxide available to the Earth’s plants simply by exhaling.

I am not a programmer myself, but I strongly encourage any programmer and/or game developer reading this article to develop this proposed connection between any game and a distributed computing project. This concept should be in the public domain, and, to the extent this is possible under current law, I hereby release any original ideas or concepts in this article into the public domain in full. I seek no monetary profit or even credit from such undertakings (though I would be extremely happy to be informed of efforts to implement them). I will benefit considerably if the implementation of this idea radically accelerates life-extension research, and this benefit would certainly be enough for me.  It is in my best interest for numerous parallel, competing, or collaborative efforts to arise in this area, and for many people to try variations on this idea.

I also welcome input from those who can anticipate some of the technical details and challenges of developing games of this sort. For instance, I would be interested in insights regarding the potential ease or difficulty of integrating a distributed computing client with another program. At present, I anticipate that most of the challenges would be technical, rather than legal, since BOINC, one of the most popular clients, is free software released under a GNU Lesser General Public License. My strong recommendation is for any efforts in this area to have an open-source character, welcoming contributions from all parties in order to make the vast benefits of this project realizable. At least some of the games created as a result could be made freely downloadable, so as to entice more people into obtaining them with nothing to lose.

The idea is now out there. I urge you to help make it happen in any way you are able.

Announcements and October-November 2012 Update to Resources on Indefinite Life Extension

Announcements and October-November 2012 Update to Resources on Indefinite Life Extension

I expect be unavailable to publish The Rational Argumentator until circa November 22, 2012 – but, in the meantime, various new offerings have been posted for my readers.

In addition, I have recently been impressed by the significant contributions my computer has made to the World Community Grid Help Conquer Cancer distributed computing project. (You can see a presentation by one of the project’s lead scientists, Dr. Igor Jurisica, here.) About a month ago, the Help Conquer Cancer project was enhanced to allow computers’ Graphics Processing Units (GPUs) to assist in the analysis of millions of experiments. My own recently enhanced computer has been participating heavily, which caused my worldwide ranking on World Community Grid to rise within a month from about 60,000th place to 26,744th place (updated every half-day) in terms of credits and 15,795th place in terms of results returned. In addition, for the totality of BOINC distributed computing projects, I have risen to the 98.2932nd percentile and a world rank of 42,446 in terms of total credits and the 99.5634th percentile and a world rank of 10,878 in terms of recent average credit. In the United States, I am ranked at 11,802nd place in terms of total BOINC credit earned.

I expect that my computer will continue to run at full capacity during the upcoming weeks, and indefinitely into the foreseeable future.

For your contemplation and enjoyment, I offer here the list of diverse and fascinating articles and videos that have been included in the Resources on Indefinite Life Extension (RILE) page in October and early November of this year.


– “Nanoparticles Against Aging” – Science Daily and Asociación RUVID – October 3, 2012

– “Nanoparticles can deliver antiaging therapies” – Brian Wang – The Next Big Future – October 4, 2012

– “A Speculative Order of Arrival for Important Rejuvenation Therapies” – Reason – Fight Aging! – October 4, 2012

– “Therapy will use stem cells to heal heart” – Pauline Tam – October 4, 2012

– “Aubrey de Grey on Longevity Science” – Reason – Fight Aging! – October 5, 2012

– “Predicted sequence of Antiaging rejuvenation” – Brian Wang – The Next Big Future – October 5, 2012

– “Researchers use magnets to cause programmed cancer cell deaths” – Bob Yirka – October 8, 2012 

– “Lilly Alzheimer’s Drug Slows Mental Decline, Study Finds” – Shannon Pettypiece – October 8, 2012

– “Vitamin Variants Could Combat Cancer as Scientists Unravel B12 Secrets” – ScienceDaily and University of Kent – October 8, 2012

– “Human Immortality: Singularity Summit Looks Forward to the Day That Humans Can Live Forever” – Hamdan Azhar – Policymic – October 2012

– “Drug From Chinese ‘Thunder God Vine’ Slays Tumors in Mice” – Drew Armstrong – Bloomberg – October 17, 2012

– “82 Years of Technology Advances; but best yet to come” – Dick Pelletier – – October 25, 2012

– “New you by 2022: biotech enhancements will help you ‘grow young’” – Dick Pelletier – Positive Futurist – October 2012

– “Flu Vaccination May Increase Longevity” – Lyle J. Dennis, M.D. – Extreme Longevity – October 29, 2012

– “Dead as a Doornail?” – Peter Rothman – h+ Magazine – November 1, 2012

– “An Outcast Among Peers Gains Traction on Alzheimer’s Cure” – Jeanne Whalen – Wall Street Journal – November 9, 2012



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