Foldit players have control over which parts of the protein they want to move - in this picture, a player has frozen some curly helices, which keeps them in place while they adjust the rest of the protein
Foldit players can use different tools to interactively twist, jiggle and reshape proteins - in this picture, a player uses rubber bands (purple) to pull together two sheets, or long flat regions of the protein
Since October, 2000 the Folding@home project has been used to understand protein folding. Scientists know the pieces that make up a protein but cannot predict how those parts fit together into a 3-D structure. So the Folding@home project harnesses the power of Internet-connected PC’s and consoles, such as the PS3, to form the most powerful distributed computing cluster in the world. But no computer in the world is big enough, and computers may not take the smartest approach. So a team from the University of Washington (UW) made a Tetris-like game that asks players to fold a protein rather than stack colored blocks and discovered that people can compete with supercomputers in this arena.
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