The Playstation 3 has been used for other purposes other than gaming because of the potentially powerful Cell process. In fact, [email protected] is a standard “feature” of the console. This is Stanford University’s project for researching cures for many types of diseases. [email protected] uses the unused processing power of the PS3 to simulate protein folding.
The University of Massachusetts is now also beginning to harness the PS3 as a super computer. University researchers have released to the public an instruction guide on how to setup the PS3 as a supercomputer. This, the researchers hope, will be a be good low-cost alternative for more expensive supercomputing research.
Universities usually rent supercomputers at $1 per hour, with usage usually reaching 5,000 hours. But with this solution they can make their own supercomputer at the same cost.
Daisy chaining 8 PS3s sounds like a cool geek idea. This could become a secondary market for PS3s especially since it’s lagging at third place in sales.