I just ran into a nifty video
over on GameDAILY about Sony's "Folding@Home" download for the PS3. Although the title of it is awkward and doesn't really give you an idea of what to expect, it's actually pretty neat. Folding@Home is not a game, really. It's more of a service that allows you to see where other PS3 "folders" are connected online as part of the Folding@Home supercomputer. It also allows you to take a look at proteins.
"Those nutty scientists are at it again!" Priceless is the video. And so priceless is also the service (Read: It's free!). It has three (count them!) three different views of proteins.
"Just amaze your friends with the THREE DIFFERENT VIEWS!
Folding@Home doesn't let you actually study the proteins, although you can definitely look at them. What it does is link all the users up together into a virtual supercomputer in order to process myriads of complicated information about them. What would take a computer a year can happen through this virtual supercomputer in a matter of hours. The data is sent back to Stanford University for them to analyze.
The goal is that the analyzing of this data could lead to cures for diseases or better treatments. The sentiment might be lost on the gaming populace, however, who would rather just look at the 3D proteins and think it neato.
-Chris(EDIT: Though I don't own a PS3 yet, a couple emails came in explaining the program for me. I wanted to relay the message. Here's the Folding@Home mainpage.)