Sourcefinder is a BOINC based distributed computing project that aims to provide a means to test the effectiveness of various astronomical sourcefinding applications.
Sourcefinding applications are designed to process ‘cubes’ of data that contain radio sources and identify the location of the sources within the cube.
We’re currently testing the effectiveness of two different sourcefinding applications: Duchamp and SoFiA.
The effectiveness of a sourcefinding application can be determined by comparing the number of correct sources found within a cube to the number of incorrect sources found.
In order to provide a fair comparison between sourcefinding applications, we’re currently getting each application to process the same sections of a large cube known as the DINGO cube. DINGO is a simualated cube of data that contains a known catalogue of valid sources, with the addition of various levels of simulated noise. The total size of the DINGO cube is around 700GB.
This is where BOINC comes in. The huge cube is subdivded in to much smaller cubelets, around 10MB to 100MB each, that are processed by the computers of BOINC users. Each user runs one of the sourcefinding applications on their local machine, processes the small cubelet, then reports any sources found within the cubelet back to the project.
Once we’ve processed the full cube through the Duchamp and SoFiA sourcefinders, the results will be compared by a researcher, and a paper will be written on the comparitive performance of these sourcefinders.
We also have the prospect of processing cube data generated by ASKAP in the near future, as ASKAP has almost completed processing a large cube of sources.
The Sourcefinder project is run as part of the wider theSkyNet project.
We welcome any sort of feedback, advice, or bug reports. You can either make a post on the forums or send us an email at email@example.com . We're happy to hear from you.
SoFiA Production Update 5
Fixed a permission issue with the VM image on the server (sorry!).
Added another two sets of workunits to the queue, although we still have a fair amount of work remaining as it is, so that's a good sign.
6 Dec 2017, 1:59:27 UTC · Discuss
SoFiA Production Update 4
Updated the windows 32bit and 64bit virtualbox wrappers to version 26200.
Pushing out 4 sets of work units this time instead of 3 to try and keep work flowing nicely.
I'm still trying to investigate the potential cause of invalid workunits. I'm currently testing workunits on several different virtualbox versions in-case one version in particular is causing issues. I'm also going to test the VM with virtualbox 5.2, just to confirm it works properly. We're still waiting on 5.2 compatible wrappers from BOINC, though.
29 Nov 2017, 4:46:11 UTC · Discuss
SoFiA Production Update 3
Spent some time improving the speed of the assimilator to grind through the large assimilation backlog we currently have.
Currently processing another 3 sets of workunits. They should be ready to go in a few hours.
22 Nov 2017, 4:30:00 UTC · Discuss
SoFiA Production Update 2
The work for this week is broken up in to 4 different runs (16 -> 19) which each contain a quater of the 486 parameters that we're running through SoFiA.
The aim here is to reduce the run time of each work unit, and reduce the amount of data that needs to be re-calculated whenever a workunit is marked invalid.
I'm still investigating the actual cause of these invalid workunits, but I still haven't been able to re-produce the errors locally on my own machines. In the mean time, I hope this quick fix eases the load a little.
15 Nov 2017, 6:43:10 UTC · Discuss
SoFiA Production Update 1
Added the ability to scale credit awarded to workunits by the validator. Currently credit scaling is at x1.5 to make up for the validation errors we've been having.
Currently processing a new batch of work units, which should be done within the next 12 or so hours.
8 Nov 2017, 6:54:13 UTC · Discuss