Distributed computing network [email protected] has ceased scouring radio telescope data for signs of extraterrestrials after 20 years. Much like [email protected]—which is currently acting as the world’s most powerful supercomputer in the fight against the new Coronavirus—[email protected] utilised a vast user-donated network of computers to analyse data, but this month it’s heading into hibernation.

[email protected] has been in operation since 1999. During that time it has processed heaps of radio telescope data collected from the deepest depths of space and listened into narrow-band radio signals in order to track down anything out of the ordinary. To do so, it relied on the contributions of computers from across the globe—graphics cards and powerful CPUs in tow—all working together in order to learn of life beyond earth.

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