Building a sense of community

Case number:671076-250405
Topic:Server
Opened by:Keith E. Laidig
Status:Closed
Type:Suggestion
Opened on:Monday, May 19, 2008 - 17:32
Last modified:Friday, January 6, 2012 - 19:57

Lads, I'd like to suggest a few things that folks responding to the Rosetta@home site have found favorable:

some metrics on the front page providing a sense of the size of the project some metric that provides a sense of the number of folks playing at any particular time some metric that provides a sense of the 'amount of computing' being done some metric that provides a sense of the improvement being made at the moment find some way to get a group, collaborative game going... These sorts of things would help to build the sense of the size and activity of the community. For example, when folks access the site and note that, say, 10K folks are playing at the present they might find it worth waiting for a slow game to load to take part in the hot action rather than just get impatient with a site that is just slow. I also suspect that some folks would be drawn to projects that are undergoing rapid improvement at that moment while others would want to try to tackle a less active project to stake out their own territory. How do the find which is which? Perhaps a color coded, pictographic guide of the various puzzles with the ones that are really going somewhere in RED and those less active as BLUE, etc..... through which folks could click to get to the associated project... I'll wager you'ld get a fair bit of excitement with folks not only trying to improve their scores but also a group moving to increase the "temperature of improvement" and drive the project color towards red hot... I admit I have no idea how one much determine such a thing as the site wide 'amount of computing', but folks are quite motivated by projects which seem to be doing something useful....perhaps 'folds/second' or 'structure improvement/second' or perhaps a metric that associates the breadth of searching as a function of time..... You should also hit up the scientists to do 'live' puzzles - the lazy @#&%^!. If they want to get folks to help them they should be online for specific times to provide a discussion stream on the possible reasons behind 'this action' lowering the energy or 'that change' increasing the number of hydrogen bonds and a general discussion of why a given protein is important and what they know about it..... etc. A successful project has to provide a lot of feedback with the user base to keep the interest level up. Finally, team playing might be a draw for groups. How can a group - say a predefined group - work together to play....? Anyway, just a couple of thoughts about the game...
(Mon, 05/19/2008 - 17:32  |  7 comments)


feet1st's picture
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I note that many of the early arrivals when the game went public are from gaming websites. I think it would be neat if there were a stream of "battle proteins". Not the regular "competition" puzzles, but something like pre-register for a new puzzle library. Each week 5 new puzzles. This would allow tournaments or LAN parties or other events to be scheduled around these puzzles. And playing them would not impact your overall ranking.

It would be like the tournament at the end of the season. Doesn't effect your win/loss record. But winning it gets you a "trophy".

Then allow players to organize special tournament teams. Two players could have a grudge match, neither knowing what the proteins will look like until the match begins. Or it could be Tomb Raider fans versus WoW. Whatever.

Diderot's picture
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Joined: 05/09/2008

I completely second just about all of the suggestions above. I don't know how the science is working out here -- are we doing a great job as a community, or a bad one? But I do know that we are all enjoying fold.it tremendously, and I think that we could continue to improve if we had more tools at our disposal for leveraging one another's insights.

For example, the only way I've been able to work on a fold first developed by a team member has been to physically switch computers with him in meatspace. This is ridiculous. Creators of folds should be able to share them, if they so choose, either with one person at a time or by going open-source.

As mentioned on another thread, a wiki would be a great idea, although I am not the right person to run it, since I've never administered a wiki before.

Also, given the vast numbers of proteins out there, might it be possible to universalize the engine? Forget about specific puzzles. Tens of thousands of amino acid sequences are all out there already, the results of various genome projects. If we could distribute the storage space too (think of BitTorrent), then the demands on the developer-side resources would be minimal.

I realize I'm talking about some big enlargements, but I'd bet that the server power needed would be a lot smaller than most MMOs, and I would definitely pay a modest subscription fee if all of the above features were implemented, and if we were given free range over all the proteins of the world, or a substantial fraction thereof. (All the human proteins, perhaps?)

Sorry, it's just so tempting to think big. Oh, and I really don't want to see fold.it die, even if we aren't up to the computers' standards. If the scientific project ever folded (ha!), then it should just be re-released as a game.

Joined: 05/11/2008

I agree that communication from the project and some metrics for how well we're doing is crucial.

Joined: 05/18/2008
Groups: UVic Folders

Of course! The project will not be very successful without some positive reinforcement for the players. Make us feel important, powerful and useful! If you do, even if the game gets boring, people will go on on folding.

admin's picture
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Topic: » Server
Status: Array » Open
Type: Array » Suggestion

Set details.

spmm's picture
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closing, apparently no longer a problem and no votes since 2009

spmm's picture
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closing, apparently no longer a problem and no votes since 2009

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