Welcome to MilkyWay@home

Posts by Travis

1) Message boards : News : back up and running (Message 62393)
Posted 24 Sep 2014 by ProfileTravis
Just deleted "aborted" 9 files: Separation Modified Fit 1.34...
None of them are being crunched. All of them receive the friendly little reminder: Computation error, and the work self-aborts.
My other MilkyWay@Home files are being processed just fine. I just wanted to find out if I'm doing the right thing? Is the problem related to my hardware?
Best to you all in this project.

Think this is probably a problem with that particular search, will forward that on.
2) Message boards : Number crunching : CPU/GPU Comparison (do we need CPU apps when GPU app is available) (Message 62391)
Posted 24 Sep 2014 by ProfileTravis
So just for someone from the project to chime in. This project is actually interesting in that the results which are returned slower actually do provide some benefit to what the project is doing as a whole.

Basically, we're running evolutionary algorithms to do parameter optimization. This means that we're trying to find a set of parameters which will make the astronomical models (either the n-body simulation or the steam fitting project) match the stars we see in the sky.

Running an evolutionary algorithm is basically a balancing act between exploration (we want to try new sets of parameter in regions of all possible parameters that we haven't tried before) and exploitation (we want to refine parameter sets in regions where we know there are good solutions).

What can happen, is if there is too much exploitation the search ends up converging to a region of pretty good solutions, but not the overall best solutions. The results that are returned slower actually kind of act as a balance against this, allowing better exploration of the search space. We actually analyzed this a bit in one of our papers (An Asynchronous Hybrid Genetic-Simplex Search for Modeling the Milky Way Galaxy using Volunteer Computing ) if you want to read it.

At any rate, even though the CPUs are chugging a long a lot slower than the GPUs, their results actually are still useful. Of course, if the CPUs all went away, we could tweak the parameters to how our evolutionary algorithms work to allow for more exploration, but having them around does make our evolutionary algorithms more robust against premature convergence to local optima.
3) Message boards : Number crunching : Feeder Down (Message 62386)
Posted 24 Sep 2014 by ProfileTravis
Sorry about that! I've been at a conference in Baltimore...I ran back to my hotel room on break to get things fixed. Sorry about the delay!

Well, certainly. You are allowed to have a life apart from keeping multiple BOINC projects running...or is that the other Travis?! :D Regardless, thanks for the effort getting us back in business here!



Nope that's me. :) Also, if something breaks here and I haven't heard about it feel free to post on the Citizen Science Grid which I've been paying more attention to trying to get things up and running. Unfortunately being a professor instead of a graduate student/post doc has me pretty busy so I don't check forums as much as I should -- so if I'm too quiet here, bug me over there. :)
4) Message boards : News : back up and running (Message 62382)
Posted 23 Sep 2014 by ProfileTravis
Looks like everything is back up and running. Let me know if there are any issues!
5) Message boards : News : Updating BOINC server code (Message 62381)
Posted 23 Sep 2014 by ProfileTravis
Looks like I broke the badges. Will get that fixed once I fix everything else.
6) Message boards : News : Updating BOINC server code (Message 62380)
Posted 23 Sep 2014 by ProfileTravis
Some updates were made to the applications which broke our feeder. We need to update and recompile the BOINC server code, and I'm working on this right now. I hope to have things fixed by the end of the night. Sorry for everything being broken!

7) Message boards : News : badge export for 3rd party sites. (Message 61898)
Posted 15 Jun 2014 by ProfileTravis
Weird, I had gotten messages that it wasn't working. Oh well, maybe it will be better now!
8) Message boards : News : badge export for 3rd party sites. (Message 61893)
Posted 13 Jun 2014 by ProfileTravis
Hi Everyone,

I've made a script which outputs everyones badges to an xml file for 3rd party export. The badge information can be downloaded here:


And will be updated daily. This information can also be found in the show_user.php page, e.g.:


Let me know how it's working!

9) Message boards : News : Award Badges Going Live Soon! (Message 60886)
Posted 1 Feb 2014 by ProfileTravis
Is there a programming oops?
I have 2 million credits, but only a 1 million credit badge.

The issue is the intervals badges update at. I think theres a 1 million badge and then the next is 5 million.

As Matt gets them to me we'll add the other intervals.
10) Message boards : News : incoming badges (Message 60885)
Posted 1 Feb 2014 by ProfileTravis
Then he didn't give you all badges described here: http://milkyway.cs.rpi.edu/milkyway/forum_thread.php?id=3423&postid=60567

2M, 3M, 20M, 30M, 300M, 10B are missing

Looks like it. I'll add them as I get them.
11) Message boards : News : incoming badges (Message 60882)
Posted 31 Jan 2014 by ProfileTravis
Little stuff, passed 40M, badge shows 10M. So my guess is totals are not retroactive or will it update at 50M? Other than that, excellent.

Matt gave me badges for:

1 credit
10k credits
100k credits
500k credits
1 mil credits
5 mil credits
10 mil credits
50 mil credits
100 mil credits
200 mil credits
500 mil credits
1 bil credits
2 bil credits
3 bil credits
5 bil credits

So once you reach that many credits you get the next badge. I've updated the tooltip to say "reached X credits" instead of "crunched X credits."

I also updated the tool tip for the 1 credit badge. The 1 credit badge will swap to the 10k+ credit badges once you get that much credit.
12) Message boards : News : incoming badges (Message 60878)
Posted 31 Jan 2014 by ProfileTravis
Hi Everyone,

After a very long wait, I've finally got some time to get badges up and going. Hopefully have them all working by the end of the day. Let me know if you're having any issues with them.

13) Message boards : News : Narrowed down the problem (Message 59857)
Posted 9 Sep 2013 by ProfileTravis
Looks like everything is back up and running, let me know if there are any issues.
14) Message boards : News : Narrowed down the problem (Message 59855)
Posted 9 Sep 2013 by ProfileTravis
So it looks like the problem with the various daemons not running is due to a problem with the mysql libraries, which have either gone missing or are broken. Hope to have a fix soon.
15) Message boards : Number crunching : Donating to Milkyway@Home (Message 59660)
Posted 25 Aug 2013 by ProfileTravis
Travis is currently in between projects right now !!! He took a position in N Dakota i believe !!! Way to cold up there Travis !!!!


John G

It's true, very cold! BUt UND is treating me very well, and my Wildlife@Home project just got some NSF funding which I'm really excited about.

I have a few more computer science-y things here that I'm planning on implementing in the next couple weeks. A new search type in particular. And I think we'll be able to publish some results from that. There'll be more news on that soon enough.
16) Message boards : Number crunching : Naming Convention Problem?? (Message 59659)
Posted 25 Aug 2013 by ProfileTravis
Either it's intentional or it doesn't matter. The work units validate OK, so nothing that needs to be fixed probably. When the runs are completed, they can rename them to whatever they want in their database anyway.

The only thing that matters server side is the first couple characters of the workunit. If it starts with "ps" its for particle swarm, "de" for differential evolution, etc..

After that, if things are messy it's just because the astronomers aren't using a well defined naming scheme or their runs.
17) Message boards : News : Badges for crunchers. (Message 59658)
Posted 25 Aug 2013 by ProfileTravis
I just recently implemented a badging scheme over at wildlife@home http://volunteer.cs.und.edu/wildlife and it would pretty easy to do the same here. So Id like to make a request for potential badges, and their credit limits (or other reason for getting those badge).

I'll be going any user responses and if we can come to a consensus of badges we like, i'll implement them, So please post some badges for us. Once we have a consensus about which ones we like I can get them up in a short time.

Also, if you like the more 'bootrsappy' layout of Wlidlife@home, I could make the milkyway@home pages look similar with a nav bar on top, etc. Let me know what you think.
18) Message boards : News : nbody fpops calculation updated (Message 59180)
Posted 1 Jul 2013 by ProfileTravis
It looks like our fpops calculation for the nbody simulation is way too high, and was causing problems. I've updated the work generator so newly generated workunits should have an estimated fpops of aproximately 100x less. Let us know how they're working.

19) Message boards : News : User location visualization (Message 59125)
Posted 26 Jun 2013 by ProfileTravis
Why I am not on the map :(

The map was generated from external IP addresses with successful geo-IP address lookups. Chances are your IP didn't have a latitude/longitude in the database we were using. We were using:


Mainly because it was free. If anyone has any suggestions for a better lookup database that we could use I'd be happy to regenerate better maps. :)

So the maps aren't exhaustive by any means.
20) Message boards : News : Milkyway@home paper Accepted for Publication! (Message 59005)
Posted 20 Jun 2013 by ProfileTravis
Congratulations! Any updates on this or estimated date of availability?

A PDF is available on arxiv.org, as in the first post:


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