Distributed computing is a science which solves a large problem by giving
small parts of the problem to many computers to solve and then combining the
solutions for the parts into a solution for the problem. Recent
distributed computing projects have been designed to use the computers of
hundreds of thousands of volunteers all over the world, via the Internet, to
look for extra-terrestrial radio signals, to look for prime numbers so large
that they have more than ten million digits, and to find more effective
drugs to fight the AIDS virus. These projects are so large, and require so
much computing power to solve, that they would be impossible for any one
computer or person to solve in a reasonable amount of time.
This site is designed for non-technical people who are interested in
learning about, and participating in, public, Internet-based projects which
apply distributed computing science to solving real-world problems.
Learn more about distributed computing:
ThinkQuest has an
site which describes distributed computing, its history, and some of the
current distributed computing projects in 2000. The site is available in
Read a detailed article about distributed and grid computing by ExtremeTech. The article was written on April 4, 2002.
Read an article about distributed computing by Byte Magazine. The article was written in 1999.
Read a great, detailed overview of distributed computing by American Scientist. The article was written in 1998.