15 million PS3’s results in viable drug for Alzheimer’s, PS Vita trophy integration coming to PS3

October 22, 2012

15 million PS3’s results in viable drug for Alzheimer’s, PS Vita trophy integration coming to PS3Earlier today, Sony unveiled what the company has been teasing this past week showing off a couple trailers hinting at something related to PlayStation All-Stars: Battle Royale. It appears that the creators of the popular “Michael” trailer worked on making a very short film for the game.

The short film, titled “The All-Star” contains a battle scene between four iconic PlayStation characters. The video apparently contains hidden references to some secrets found in the game. The studio behind PlayStation All-Stars: Battle Royale did tease that there could be more hidden characters in the game.

PlayStation All-Stars: Battle Royale is set to release November 20th.

In other news, Eric Lempel, VP of Sony Network Entertainment revealed that an update will be coming to the PS3 next week with firmware 4.30, which will bring PlayStation Vita trophy integration to the home console. The trophy screen will get a slight modification adding a PS Vita tab which will also show its progress bar to next level up.

PS_vita_trophy

Lempel also revealed that the long-time running PS3 app, Life with PlayStation will be retiring after nearly six years of crunching numbers to find a cure for cancer, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s which was done by Stanford University’s Folding@home.

More than 15 million users have used the Life app on their PS3 resulting in more than 100 million computation hours for the Folding@home program. According to Stanford University research lead, Vijay Pande revealed that as a direct result of Life on the PS3, the research facility is very close to pushing a viable drug that combats Alzheimer’s disease.

PS3_Folding

Pande’s full statement:

The PS3 system was a game changer for Folding@home, as it opened the door for new methods and new processors, eventually also leading to the use of GPUs. We have had numerous successes in recent years. Specifically, in a paper just published in the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, we report on tests of predictions from earlier Folding@home simulations, and how these predictions have led to a new strategy to fight Alzheimer’s disease. The next steps, now underway at Stanford, are to take this lead compound and help push it towards a viable drug. It’s too early to report on our preliminary results there, but I’m very excited that the directions set out in this paper do appear to be bearing fruit in terms of a viable drug (not just a drug candidate).

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51 Responses to “15 million PS3’s results in viable drug for Alzheimer’s, PS Vita trophy integration coming to PS3”

  1. CarlB:

    (The Verge) “It’s not clear why Sony is removing the functionality.”

    None of those diseases have been cured (“help find the cure!”… and we wind up with another drug for big pharma that only treats the disease – along with what is likely to be plenty of side effects)… maybe it’s just no longer needed considering the advances made in computing over the last five plus years? That and probably because hardly anyone uses Life?

  2. Godless:

    I’ll be honest, I didn’t even know what Life was.

    I thought it had something to do with Home, and was some kind of social networking bullshit for Sony arse kissers.

    If I had known what it was, I would have run it while I was charging the controllers :(

    Why was this feature not promoted in any way?

  3. CarlB:

    It was once promoted heavily, but that many moons ago… as time went on, the importance (and perhaps the relevance) of Life in comparison to other methods of supercomputing waned.

  4. dans:

    LOL @ sackboy

  5. Kushy:

    OT but NICE! :)

    http://ca.ign.com/articles/2012/10/23/watch-new-iron-man-3-trailer

  6. Roca.:

    “According to Stanford University research lead, Vijay Pande revealed that as a direct result of Life on the PS3, the research facility is very close to pushing a viable drug that combats Alzheimer’s disease”

    PS3 – It Only Does Everything :P

  7. phranctoast:

    It’s strange that even to this day, this news is met with pessimism and skeptism.

  8. phranctoast:

    *skepticism*

  9. CarlB:

    “very close to pushing a viable drug… It Only Does Everything”

    *pushing drugs* :D

  10. phranctoast:

    For medicinal reasons only ;)

  11. Roca.:

    @Carl
    “very close to pushing a viable drug that combats Alzheimer’s disease”

    fixed.

  12. Kushy:

    “(“help find the cure!”… and we wind up with another drug for big pharma that only treats the disease – along with what is likely to be plenty of side effects)…”

    “It’s strange that even to this day, this news is met with pessimism and skeptism.”

    @CarlB & phranctoast

    There is mulitple sides and ways you can looks at this! Sure a treatment is a step in the right direction! On the other hand why cure it when you can treat it with a dug that makes billions of dollars? If you go curing it that is lost revenue! Also they can come up with new or current treatment for the side effects of that drug! Big drug companies don’t give a rats ass about you! More people die form prescription drugs then from all ileagal drugs combined! So yes it is a step in the right direction but I can see where the skepticism comes from!

  13. phranctoast:

    “There is mulitple sides and ways you can looks at this! ”

    No. There really isn’t. We’re talking about the potential cure to Alzheimer’s, Cancer, and Parkinsons, and you’re speculating on maintenance costs and side effects. Worry about something like that when there something to worry about. Let problem 1 get taken care of prior to dreaming up problem 25.

  14. CarlB:

    “We’re talking about the potential cure to Alzheimer’s, Cancer, and Parkinsons…”

    Folding@Home and other similar programs still have that potential, Life no longer does. Skeptical of drugs that haven’t been named or even gone through clinical trials, ones that will ultimately be distributed by big Pharma like Merck, ones that will only treat and not cure? Just a tiny bit skeptical.

  15. Ivan_PSP:

    I used to leave my 60GB launch PS3 the whole night there using Folding@Home. Folding@Home won’t be miss by PS3 owners we are to busy getting a third job to buy all this awesome exclusives Sony keeps developing for us.

    Hey this my new Seagate Momentus 1TB PS3 hard disk drive just got it today from STAPLES for $98. https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-BrL_l6WWqb0/UIdFVlbR1KI/AAAAAAAAAgk/-N0nVNk0JwA/s640/12+-+1

  16. CarlB:

    “On the other hand why cure it when you can treat it with a drug that makes billions of dollars? If you go curing it that is lost revenue! Also they can come up with new or current treatment for the side effects of that drug! Big drug companies don’t give a rats ass about you! More people die form prescription drugs then from all ileagal drugs combined!”

    Well said Kush. Even when big pharma is forced to recall due to the deaths of thousands (see Vioxx), they still profit by billions after fines and no one goes to jail after trying to cover it up while people are dying as a result of that drug. I’m not against treatment, or saying that every drug is bad, but until it is proven effective and without even more problematic side effects, I’ll maintain a healthy dose of skepticism.

  17. Godless:

    I’m with Carl & Kushy on this drug thing.

    I’ve seen a couple of documentaries uncovering some of the stuff these companies to, and its both shocking & saddening to know that they are almost impeding progress if it happen to get in the way of profits.

  18. phranctoast:

    “I’m with Carl & Kushy on this drug thing.”

    Are you now? You believe we should be all skeptical instead of enthusiastic about potential cures to horrible diseases at this point in time?

  19. CarlB:

    A drug designed to treat and not cure isn’t a “potential cure”, it is a treatment, and yes, if it hasn’t even been through clinical trials, I would say one should be skeptical instead of blindly enthusiastic considering big pharma’s track record.

  20. Kushy:

    “There is mulitple sides and ways you can looks at this! ”

    “No. There really isn’t.”

    @phranctoast

    Come on, that’s a little close minded (no offense)! There are different sides and opinions and pros and cons to everything!

    “I’m with Carl & Kushy on this drug thing.”

    “Are you now? You believe we should be all skeptical instead of enthusiastic about potential cures to horrible diseases at this point in time?”

    @phranctoast

    I think you should and can be both skeptical and enthusiastic! All about balance bro! For every good act someone does there is someone looking to take advantage of it for their own selfish reasons! I do get what you are saying though, more effort, money and research towards finding a cure for man kinds diseases is a good thing! :)

  21. phranctoast:

    It’s like worrying about winning the lottery because of the taxes you’d have to pay.

  22. Roca.:

    Well, My aunt has alzheimer and imo this is ‘the worst’ disease that can happen to one of your family members. She was a very friendly & energetic person. One day she’s there having a converstion with her husband and her daughters, the next day she doesn’t know they are, she barely speaks, she lost all her memory and common sense. She’s just a vegetable now, its very sad.

    I got very excited when I read about a potential treatment for alzheimer…why wouldn’t anyone be?

  23. Kushy:

    “It’s like worrying about winning the lottery because of the taxes you’d have to pay.”

    @phranctoast

    That is like comparing apples and oranges and you know it! Besides, we don’t pay taxes on lottery winnings here in Canada, we keep 100% of the amount won. See how that works, different sides to every story!

    Not every thing is so black and white, especially when it comes to the topic we are debating! That is the problem with too many people, they just take whatever their doctors tell them to! I have been taking a drug for years now and my doctor and the drug companies claimed it was safe! Turns out it is not so safe after futher research and my liver has taken alot of damage and I developed a heart condition due to it as well! So please spare me, my life is now in danger! I should have been more skeptical! It’s almost like you are just arguing for the sake of arguing, or you are simply ignorant as I was! It’s not about being right or wrong, it’s about being smart and not being overly optimisic, be realistic and cautious!

  24. phranctoast:

    “That is like comparing apples and oranges and you know it!”

    Analogies usually are, but this one works pretty perfect….unless you live in Canada.

    “It’s almost like you are just arguing for the sake of arguing, or you are simply ignorant as I was!”

    Like Roca, I also lost family to Alzheimers, And Parkinsons, and Cancer. Hearing about advancements made to treat these diseases comes as positive news to me, and I think it’s way too soon to look at the negatives which may or may not exist at all.

  25. phranctoast:

    “unless you live in Canada.”

    Actually.. Canada works well in the analogy too. Think of Canada as equating to “no side effects”, while equally purchasing lottery tickets from both on a biweekly basis.. :)

  26. Kushy:

    “Like Roca, I also lost family to Alzheimers, And Parkinsons, and Cancer. Hearing about advancements made to treat these diseases comes as positive news to me, and I think it’s way too soon to look at the negatives which may or may not exist at all.”

    phranctoast:

    Then looks like all three of us have the same thing in common! My father is 59 and suffers from Parkinsons. The medications he takes has helped with the tremors and many of the symptoms, however he sleeps about 18 hours a day! There are negatives to everything! There is good with bad and vice versa! No one was saying all treatments are bad, however alot of treatments are harsh on the body and can end up having worse side effects then the symptoms of the disease your treating. The only point CarlB and I were really trying to make is they need to put more effort in finding cures rather then treatments that often have harsh side effects! The big drug companies are perfectly happy pimping treatments and fast tracking the release of them that make them billions! Anways lets agree to disagree on the matter! :)

  27. phranctoast:

    ” The only point CarlB and I were really trying to make is they need to put more effort in finding cures rather then treatments that often have harsh side effects! The big drug companies are perfectly happy pimping treatments and fast tracking the release of them that make them billions! ”

    Well. Of course they are. They are a business.

    I guess it just sucks when a non profit organization gets lumped into all this pessimism/skepticism, and all they’re trying to do is help bring the end of horrible diseases.

    Anyway. It’s a good read.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Folding@home

  28. CarlB:

    “It’s like worrying about winning the lottery because of the taxes you’d have to pay.”

    It’s like thinking you won the lottery just because you bought a ticket.

    “I got very excited when I read about a potential treatment for alzheimer… why wouldn’t anyone be?”

    Because it hasn’t even gone through clinical trials yet, and even some treatment drugs that have had worse crippling or even fatal side effects. I want a cure for these diseases, but I’m not naive enough to think that every untested treatment works, nor do I get excited about every one I hear of years before it even gets used.

    I get genuinely excited about proven cures, not “viable drug” treatments that haven’t even had their preliminary results published, and I think it’s way too soon to look at this as a treatment or “potential cure” which may or may not exist at all.

  29. Roca.:

    “I get genuinely excited about proven cures”

    stupidest and dumbest statemetment in this thread.

  30. phranctoast:

    “I get genuinely excited about proven cures, not “viable drug” treatments that haven’t even had their preliminary results published, and I think it’s way too soon to look at this as a treatment or “potential cure” which may or may not exist at all.”

    So to sum it up….

    Being optimistic about potential treatment is too soon but being pessimistic about side effects to that potential cure is right on the mark.
    Can I buy some pot from you?

  31. phranctoast:

    *replace treatment with cure or cure with treatment. As long as they both say the same. *

  32. CarlB:

    “stupidest and dumbest statemetment in this thread.”

    “statemetment” takes the cake, but let’s get this straight… you wouldn’t get excited over a proven cure you heard about for the first time, but you would get excited over an unproven, untested treatment that hasn’t even gone through clinical trials or had it’s preliminary results published, and may or may not have side effects worse than the symptoms of the disease it is meant to treat?
    Okay.

    “Being optimistic about potential treatment is too soon but being pessimistic about side effects to that potential cure is right on the mark.”

    It may be just a bit soon to be excited about a treatment drug when preliminary results haven’t even been published and it hasn’t gone through the years of necessary human clinical trials, especially considering the amount of drugs which have failed to pass those trials in comparison to those that have succeeded.

    Smoke pot all you want, it won’t change the fact that the drug you really want to cure a disease hasn’t even been tested yet. Get excited and be as optimistic about some drug you don’t even know the name of as much you want, one that is purported on a video game site to be a “potential” treatment with side effects unknown, not a “potential” cure, years before it is available or has even been tested; I’ll still get genuinely excited about proven cures I have heard about from legitimate and credible sources for the first time, not necessarily “potential” treatment drugs mentioned on Gamer.blorge.

    “It takes approximately 10 years of study in test tubes and laboratory mice to reach the point where a treatment may be tested for its safety and effectiveness in humans.
    Approximately one in 50 drugs that enter pre-clinical testing prove safe enough and effective enough to be tested in people.
    One in five drugs that enter clinical trials will prove safe and effective enough to receive FDA approval.”
    http://www.ciscrp.org/professional/facts_pat.html

    “It might take 10 to 15 years or more to complete all 3 phases of clinical trials before the licensing stage.”
    h**p://cancerhelp.cancerresearchuk.org/about-cancer/cancer-questions/how-long-does-it-take-for-a-new-drug-to-go-through-clinical-trials#long

    So let’s revisit this conversation in a decade or two, eh?

  33. phranctoast:

    It’s like you’re missing my point while making my point all at the same time.

    This is great news and a step in the right direction. That’s my point. It’s awesome to see the calculations gained from folding at home (Life) being utilized to truly do something that they set out to do. Sure there a long time until something viable comes from it. I don’t think anyone else thought otherwise.

    If you think I’m thinking a bit too preliminary with that frame of mind imagine how I think of your thought process which already has the viable treatment being exploited, and causing harm from some imaginary side effects.

    I guess we can talk in 10 years. In the meantime if you want to go by the name negative Nancy I’m completely okay with that. :D

  34. CarlB:

    Not at all, a drug isn’t “great news” until it’s been proven to work. I’m not going to praise some treatment that hasn’t been tested nor damn it until more information has come out. In the meantime if you want to go by the name of positive Pollyanna I’m completely okay with that. :D

  35. phranctoast:

    And negative Nancy morphs into plagiarist Paula.

  36. CarlB:

    And positive Pollyanna morphs into Wendy whiner.

  37. phranctoast:

    And my previous posts speaks for itself.

  38. phranctoast:

    @godless
    “I’ll be honest, I didn’t even know what Life was.

    I thought it had something to do with Home, and was some kind of social networking bullshit for Sony arse kissers.

    If I had known what it was, I would have run it while I was charging the controllers :(

    Why was this feature not promoted in any way?”

    It used to be known as Folding at home, with no association with Sony’s Home.

    Then Sony got rid of the F@H app and made it a channel on Life. It was a big deal in 2007. I know plenty of people that would leave their PC’s and PS3 on for it.

  39. phranctoast:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_with_PlayStation

  40. CarlB:

    So why do you think they got rid of it?

  41. CarlB:

    Ah. Never mind, it seems I already guessed it.

    “Statistically, the PS3 is ranked well behind the performance capability of ATI and Nvidia graphics processors.”

    At least PS3 was able to contribute to research for awhile.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/news/ps3-stanford-folding-at-home-FAH-Folding-home,18609.html

  42. phranctoast:

    “It’s not clear why Sony is removing the functionality. ”

    “Stanford’s Folding@home research lead Vijay Pande said “The PS3 system was a game changer for Folding@home, as it opened the door for new methods and new processors, eventually also leading to the use of GPUs.”

    Over 15 million users took part in the project, contributing a total of over 100 million computation hours. The official Folding@home site says that the PS3′s unusual Cell processor was uniquely suited to the task and offered computational speeds far in advance of typical PCs or competing consoles like the Xbox 360.”

    http://www.theverge.com/2012/10/22/3537502/sony-removing-ps3-folding-home

    “Statistically, the PS3 is ranked well behind the performance capability of ATI and Nvidia graphics processors.”

    h*tp://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/67/Folding%40home_participation_per_client.png

  43. Roca.:

    “Statistically, the PS3 is ranked well behind the performance capability of ATI and Nvidia graphics processors”

    It still doesn’t say this is why the Sony removed the funtionality.

    “Folding@home can also take advantage of the computing power of PlayStation 3s. At the time of its inception and for certain calculations, its main streaming Cell processor delivered a 20x speed increase over PCs, power which could not be found on other systems such as the Xbox 360. The PS3?s high speed and efficiency introduced other opportunities for worthwhile optimizations, and significantly changed the tradeoff between computational efficiency and overall accuracy, allowing for the utilization of more complex molecular models at little extra computational cost”

    As of February 24, 2012, FFolding@home has about 439,000 active CPUs, about 37,000 active GPUs, and about 21,000 active PS3s, for a total of about 5.9 native petaFLOPS, (8.4 x86 petaFLOPS) more computing power than the combined efforts of all distributed computing projects under BOINC.

    ***A large majority of this performance comes from the GPU and PS3 clients***

    sources:
    http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Folding@home

    h**p://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Folding@home#PlayStation_3

  44. CarlB:

    Still, one would think even such low ranked processors as the PS3′s could find some use in folding@home, even if they now represent less than 10 percent of the current total processing power of the project.

    Maybe they’ll do something similar with PS4.

  45. phranctoast:

    My initial post had this in mind and not just carlb.

    http://gamer.blorge.com/2007/03/21/folding-at-home-coming-to-ps3-in-version-16-update/

  46. phranctoast:

    Maybe some people would have cared more if they earned trophies for time spent on this.

  47. Roca.:

    “Maybe some people would have cared more if they earned trophies for time spent on this”

    I remember back when Microsoft and retailers were encouraging users to take breaks between long gaming sessions (and not to leave the 360 on for a long period of time) to prevent the 360 dying on you…Sony was encouraging its users to use folding@home and leave their PS3s on 24/7

  48. phranctoast:

    …and MS had this “me too” attitude whenever F@H was mentioned saying they can also do it, but using the 360′s GPU. Then……Nothing happened.

  49. CarlB:

    I have no problem with folding@home being on PS3, even if it was a PR move at least it contributes something and gives back. I’d rather see initiatives like this stay and be promoted than go away before a cure is found.

  50. phranctoast:

    With the 68M consoles sold, New consoles that consume less power, and a bit of space dedicated to inform people not aware of it, It would be nice to see F@H make a comeback.

  51. CarlB:

    I wonder what cost Sony was burdened with by having it on their system.

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