[RC5] OGR motivations/achievements in general

Timothy Marsh Timothy.Marsh at usm.edu
Thu Oct 3 23:35:22 EDT 2002

    Many distributed computing projects can seem like a "drop in the bucket"
at times, especially when problems are available that far exceed the
computing power available today.  Finding a few OGR's is a reasonable task
for dnet in the next decade I believe.  The fact that there are an infinite
number to find doesn't diminish the value of the ones we will be able to
find.  In terms of usefulness, I would consider OGR more useful than RC5.
OGR at least has a few, albeit highly specialized, applications whereas RC5
is really more of a marketing campaign for RSA labs (as I see it anyway).
Maybe neither are considered as important as some other applications such as
cancer research or, for some people, search for ETI.

    I think the important thing to remember here is why we (dnet) are really
working on these problems.  Our goal is "development, deployment, and
advocacy, to be pursued in the advancement of distributed computing."  The
real purpose here is to advance distributed computing by creating a client,
solving some really challenging problems, and then to advertise that we did
it with the power of distributed computing.  Any benefits to the problem we
are working on is realy just icing on the cake.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Steve Bennett" <me at stevage.com>
To: <rc5 at lists.distributed.net>
Sent: Thursday, October 03, 2002 9:09 PM
Subject: [RC5] OGR motivations/achievements in general

> Hi all,
>   The answers to my questions are probably available 'somewhere' but I'll
> ask here anyway.  Basically: how important is what we're doing here with
> OGR?  According to the link on the Dnet OGR page
> (http://www.research.ibm.com/people/s/shearer/grtab.html) there already
> exists some kind of 'good' solution for the first 150 golomb rulers.  In
> two years that Dnet has been working on the problem, it would seem that
> we've either verified that the previous best 24 was the best (or possibly
> improved it? not sure), and have started searching for the best 25.  It ju
> seems, in relation to the number of rulers to be found (infinite, of which
> at least a hundred or more might be useful), that what we could reasonably
> expect to achieve in the next decade or so might at best be described as
> "inconsequential".  Is this why people are complaining about not wanting
> do OGR25?  Because it uses unused computer time to do something useless?
> I would welcome any flaws in my information or argument being pointed
> Steve
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