27 May 2006

How to Save the Commons: Compute

There aren't many commons bigger than the atmosphere, nor one whose existence in something near its present state is so critical to our own survival. But in the face of the indisputable scientific consensus that global warming is taking place, it is hard to know what to do.

Well, short of rugby-tackling your elected representatives to the ground and refusing to let go until they do something about the climate crisis, you might at least join this project. It's pretty standard distributed computing stuff: your PC (Windows only, alas) does calculations in the background during idle time, and contributes its bit(s) to the greater whole - in this case making more accurate predictions about climate change.

It hardly requires much commitment from you, just a quick download, plus some electricity (pity that the latter will make the global warming worse). In fact, it's worth taking part just to get the ultra-cool screen-saver, which shows your model - your earth - and its climate, evolving before your very eyes.

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