[RC5] seti@home fraud!

Stephan Wonczak sws at sherlock.pc.uni-koeln.de
Tue Jun 8 11:10:26 EDT 1999

On Sun, 6 Jun 1999, Paul Volcko wrote:

> >   500,000 users working on 115
> >   work units?
> >                                    Bob_Kanefsky
> >                                     (M/California) 
> >                                                                        Jun
> > 5 1999
> > 
> > 2:28AM EDT
> > 
> >    I've reluctantly come to the conclusion that SETI at home's half million
> > participants are currently being
> >    assigned the same 115 work units over and over again, all from three
> > different sky locations collected
> >    on January 7 and 8. If anyone has seen any other work units recently --
> > especially from January 9 or
> >    later -- please speak up.
> 08ja99aa.27623.5291.332676.41 is the latest unit I've been 
> crunching on.  This doesn't fall into your 115 listed in your previous 
> message, so it would appear it's all good from my viewpoint.  
> Seems like you've jumped the gun in your conclusions.  

  I just checked on a friend's computer, and while he is currrently
working on a different unit (08ja99aa.18487.296592.142), there is at least
one duplicate in his logfile ... and he finished only 10 units! Needless 
to say he reverted to distributed.net immediately after I notified hin,
etleast until seti at home adresses this problem. 
  So maybe the number of work units is not *that* small, but it is
woefully small for half a million participants. Even if they only expected
a number of participants in a range of 5000-50000, there would have been
way too few work units. 
  One last comment on seti at home: Several members of this mailinglist said
that they felt the search for E.T. was more 'worthwhile',  'productive' or
even more 'real world' than trying to break a commercial code that would
not give in after more than one year. While I am sure there *is*
intelligent extraterrestrial life somewhere in our universe (quite
possibly in our 'nearer' neighborhood), I don't think we stand a chance to
find it with our present technology. 
  Even if we did, where would we go from there? We can't visit, we can't
communicate (just try to imagine holding a conversation with question and
answer seperated by 40 years!), so what's the point? It has absolutely no
impact on our daily lives. Encryption on the other hand is quite important
for privacy, so it should have more priority than a wild-goose chase where
we don't even know wether there is a solution. But this is all IMHO, of

		C U, Stephan
   "I haven't lost my mind; I know exactly where I left it."
   "The meaning of my life is to make me crazy"

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