Weekly folding update

— 7:56 PM on November 16, 2004

Welcome back to the Folding update! This week: how to add more punch to Team TR and maybe give yourself a boost while doing it!

But first, check out the weekly stats and links. We're going to go light on Frankenbot this week. We'll get back to Frankie in more detail next week. Good stuff here; go see what's what.

As most of us who currently fold can attest, this thing is like an addiction. Once we see our username climbing the ranks, we want more. More conquests, more GHz, more oomph. Then the checkbook or the spouse intervenes and says, "Hey, maybe throwing down the plastic for five dedicated A64 folding boxes isn't the best way to budget the family income." What then? What is there to do when reality rears its ugly head? Why, the answer is obvious. Get recruiting! You have computers at work, computers at school, friends and family all have them, right? So get them to work folding.

Once that decision has been made, the trick then is to convince others to let their machines fold. After all, we can't have you just going around and hijacking peoples' computers, that would be a violation of the rules. And no one likes a cheater. So this week, we're going to look at ways to recruit members to the team.

In our first example, lets say that you work at a company that has several computers that sit idle for a decent stretch of time. Or maybe you're a student at a school or university with one or more computer labs. You want to see those idle cycles put to good use. But there's a network admin or school administrator that you need to convince first. Usacomp2k3 did an excellent outline for a proposal that gives a very brief synopsis of what Folding is, what its goals are, and what the possible issues might be. This is an excellent place to start writing a business proposal to submit to that network admin or school administrator. Also in that thread are several links to articles and statistics that can be very helpful in compiling a complete proposal. If you need some extra documentation on the negligible effects of folding on business PC's, contact drfish in the forums, and he can send you a letter signed by the President of his company stating that they have had no adverse effects of folding on their machines for over a year.

Another idea that was recently put forth by mac_h8r1 is the idea of using a college course to add new folders to the, erm, fold. Mac_h8r1 is a college student, and for his speech class, he had to give a persuasive speech. So mac_h8r1 decided to persuade his classmates to join Team TR and fold. He made a note card to hand out to the class with all the vital information on it so that the audience would have something to take back to their dorm room and work from. His speech went very well, and so far Team TR has added 10 new folders as a direct result of his efforts. To top it all off, mac_h8r1 got an "A" on his speech!

Yet another good way to recruit folders is to barter for their cycles. How many of you are your friends' and family's first call when they have computer problems? Neighbors, co-workers—they all call you, don't they? Do they offer to pay you? Buy you a round next time you go out? Instead of that, tell them the work is free as long as they let you fold on their machines. If you normally charge an hourly rate, tell them you'll charge them this much for the job, but if they let you fold, the fee will be less. Most people who have called you to look at their computer won't hesitate to trust you when you tell them that folding is harmless, and most of the time, they're very happy to get a discounted rate. They get a deal on their repair; you get another folding box!

One other way to recruit folders to Team TR is to enlist the help of forums that do not have their own F@H team. TR's resident recruiting officer, drfish, did just that recently when he introduced the SereneScreen forum members to folding and to Team TR. Drfish's efforts have added several new members to the Tech Report F@H team. These new members total more than 38GHz of folding goodness and more than 15 processors. SereneScreen even briefly broke into the Top 20 producers, and I expect to see them there again real soon. In a nice addition to Team TR's rivalry list, one SereneScreen member decided to go it alone and had a nice little competition going with his fellow SereneScreen members.

If you have another idea for recruiting new members to Team TR, or if you have an opportunity to recruit new members and need some help convincing them, please do not hesitate to stop into our TR's Distributed Computing Forum and let us all know. We'd love to hear from you.

That's all for this week. Have a good week, and fold on.

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