News on the Protomol and GPU3 cores

By , the in Folding@Home Project - No comment
Currently, the Pande Group is focussing on adapting the ProtoMol core to the standard of the other cores used in Folding@home. Indeed, as with any core developed on a new codebase, it must ensure it is able to produce files compatible with the existing clients and servers, and that it can correctly communicate with the client (error codes, progression, checkpointing). Vijay Pande announced today that progress is encouraging and that the core is continuing the process of internal validation. Note that the development of this core has been entrusted to a professional programmer, Joseph Coffland.

On another note, the GPU3 core also continues on its path. Vijay has said it will be called Core 15 (the logical next number in the series of GPU cores). Recall that the main change to this core is to the codebase: it now runs around OpenMM. At first, OpenMM was based on the codebases of the current and past GPU cores (GPU1 and GPU2) but it has since undergone many additions and modifications to make it much more reliable and stable. Unfortunately, this stability is at the expense of performance, however the benchmark will take this slight new decline in scientific effectiveness into account. You shouldn't even notice this in your PPD output. This approach is made possible by the fact that GPU3 projects will start with a clean sheet, not continuing any of the GPU2 work.

Unfortunately we have no release date for these new cores as per Pande Group policy, but careful study of the OpenMM Roadmap can speculate on the release date of Core 15:

Beta (October 2009) includes:

Release 1.0 (January 2010) adds:
  • Finalized API
  • Extensive unit tests and validation suite
  • Custom bonded interactions

If you believe this roadmap, considering that core 15 is developed in parallel and it will require some additional validation tests during the integration of version 1 of the OpenMM code, the latter stages of the first quarter of 2010 seem to be a realistic arrival date for the new core.

We will post more as and when we get it ;)

Largely based on: Updates on new cores: Protomol and GPU3 core