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Plans for Future Development Discussed at BOINC Workshop 2017

22 Sep 2017   

A group of BOINC developers, project managers, researchers, and volunteers recently participated in a workshop where they exchanged information and ideas that will help set the direction for the future development of the BOINC open source project.

The BOINC Workshop 2017 was held in Paris on September 6-8. This was the first such gathering since BOINC (the software on which World Community Grid and other distributed computing projects are built) transitioned to a community governance model in 2015. World Community Grid technical team members Kevin Reed and Keith Uplinger represented World Community Grid at the event.

World Community Grid’s Keith Uplinger (left) and Kevin Reed (right) were able to see a few of the iconic sights of Paris when they attended the BOINC Workshop 2017.

The workshop’s primary purposes were to connect members of the BOINC community, share information about the various projects that use BOINC, and discuss future plans for the continued development of the platform. Some of the items discussed were:

  • Demonstration of a proof-of-concept that enables communication between a user’s browser and the BOINC client, which could potentially be used to simplify how volunteers register and attach to World Community Grid
  • The progress of a new National Science Foundation grant to enable the use of BOINC with resources such as Purdue University’s nanoHUB
  • Rapidly setting up a BOINC project using docker (a system that lets developers create apps in the environment of their choice)
  • Running a research application within a docker container
  • Automated testing of BOINC server code, which will help improve code quality

World Community Grid’s Keith Uplinger gave the group an update about how World Community Grid uses DevOps (a software development method that helps communication and collaboration between software developers and IT personnel). Kevin Reed, who serves as Chair of the BOINC Working Committee, gave a report on the committee’s current tasks and goals, which include increasing the number of volunteer developers who contribute regularly to the development of BOINC.

Other presentations included an update on BOINC project climateprediction.net, which is the world’s largest climate modelling experiment; and a talk about the BOINC Pentathlon, a 14-day online event which brings in new volunteers from all over the world.

For more information about the BOINC Workshop 2017, visit the event website.