The Folding@Home project, brainchild of Pande Lab and Stanford University, has a long-time partnership with Sony since the launch of its PS3 client back in 2007. Today we are proud to announce that the Folding@Home Android client along with its web server component have been released to Open Source here, in GitHub’s repo.
So what exactly is Folding@Home?
Folding@Home is a community project that harnesses the unused power of individual devices such as PCs, consoles, phones and tablets, in a grid of millions of processors to run calculations on protein folding. Folding refers to the way human protein folds in the cells that make up your body. We rely on proteins to keep us healthy but when they misfold, there can be serious consequences. By running Folding@Home on your favorite device you are helping scientists understand protein folding and come closer to developing new drugs for diseases believed to be resulting from protein misfolding, such as Alzheimer’s or cystic fibrosis.
What’s the Android client’s history with Sony?
In 2014 Stanford University and Sony Mobile formed a partnership with Virtus/Venturus from Brazil to build an Android client for the Folding@Home platform and strengthen the relationship with the research community.
In the words of Kleber José de Paula, Project Manager at Venturus: “It was a pleasure for Venturus and Virtus to be a part of this great project in partnership with Stanford University researchers and Sony Mobile. It was a great opportunity to use our technical expertise in such a noble project.”
The relationship proved fruitful for both Stanford University researchers and Sony Mobile. The Android client was downloaded in thousands and has since contributed significantly to the research. “Together with the team at Sony we’ve been able to develop the technology, reach out with the information and connect with hundreds of thousands of volunteers that are now donating their idle computing power to disease research.” – Stanford University’s Anton Thynell, Project Manager says.
Why is the Android client Open Source?
Most of Folding@Home’s engine has already been open sourced by Stanford University and it is now time for the Android client to join the family and have its source code published. Zoran Jovanovic, Master Architect in Software at Sony Mobile, adds: “This is a wonderful way for Folding@Home to give back to the community and show their appreciation for those who have been giving away computing resources for a good cause.”