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Harvard supercomputing cluster commandeered to mine Dogecoin

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Harvard library (public domain)
Harvard library (public domain)

An unidentified Harvard community member managed to break their way into the university's high-powered "Odyssey cluster" last week all for the purpose of mining Dogecoin, reports the Harvard Crimson. The offending miner was reportedly using the research network to participate in a mining competition, taking up significant resources from the cluster in the process. He or she has since been banned from using "any and all research computing facilities on a fully permanent basis." Wow.

Much processing power. Many profit.

Odyssey is a 14,000 core Linux cluster used primarily for science and technology research, made up of mainly Dell PowerEdge M600 servers. However, making use of it for Dogecoin mining could potentially be a lucrative enterprise. Since the popular cryptocurrency is currently only valued at less than a cent, mining on a personal computer to make a profit is a hard sell. However, a supercomputer lends more power to the enterprise. "The Odyssey cluster is a bunch of computers networked together in a way that allows fast data transfer between processors," David Simmons-Duffin, a member of Princeton’s School of Natural Sciences, told the Crimson. "Although each individual processor isn't much more powerful than your personal laptop, having many processors together can be a huge benefit when doing scientific computing,"

Despite this potential, it's unclear how much money was mined in the operation or how long it lasted. It's safe to say, however, that the culprit will have a hard time cashing the Dogecoins in.