Is the software safe to use?
Yes. The BOINC software, produced by the University of California with support from the National Science Foundation
, has been adopted by IBM
to safely and securely perform research.
Computers running the program will communicate strictly with WCG databases, and the program does not have access to your personal or system files. It will access the internet for purposes of downloading new research and uploading its findings, in much the same way that Java Updater needs to access the internet to perform updates.
Will the software slow down my computer?
No. The software is configured to only run when you are not using your computer; the moment you begin to work, the program will stop doing research.
Can I control how and when my computer does research?
Yes. The "World Community Grid BOINC Manager" allows you to customize every aspect of the software. You can control how long the computer needs to be idle before research begins, whether or not the computer should do work if on battery power (default: no), the maximum hard drive space and CPU power that should be used, and more.
Can I install the software on multiple computers?
Yes. Simply use the download link
and log in with your account.
Does the software work on Macs?
Yes. WCG BOINC is available for Windows, Linux, and Mac operating systems. However, you will need to download the correct version from the download page
Can I do research but still keep my old screensaver?
Yes. Once WCG BOINC is installed, you can change back to a different screensaver, and the software will still do research when your computer is idle. To stop research, either change the software Preferences or uninstall the software.
Can I decide which research projects my computer will work on?
Yes. Log in to your account
to activate/deactivate specific research projects. By default, all WCG projects will be active.
What happens to the research we produce?
Upon completion of a project, the research is published freely to the global scientific community to aid in universal understanding of the issues addressed.
Does anyone profit from this research?
No. No one makes money from your participation in this project. If anyone profits, it is the people whose diseases are being cured and whose problems are being solved thanks to your computer's work.
Where can I send more questions?
The effort to promote the widespread use of WCG BOINC is being spearheaded by Brian Pilchik of Tufts University. Students, faculty, and administrators can direct emails to his university email account. Many other questions can be answered on the official WCG website.