Today in New Zealand is daffodil day. A day when people donate money for the research of cancer in return for a Daffodil.  The money collected is used to help and support those living with cancer and also to help in the battle to fight cancer. All of us know someone whose life has been radically changed by what is often a terminal disease.

It's great to be part of a common cause which helps to fight for the common good of humanity. For some time now, I've been helping with cancer research as part of a collaborative, crowdsourcing program known as World Community Grid.

The World Community Grid is a community of people all around the world who are helping scientists to research some of the world's greatest problems such as cancer HIV/AIDS and water purification.  To do this, data and knowledge is collected and then analysed to pick up on trends and other information which may help to find common cures.  Everyone in the community helps out by downloading data to their computer. Mathematical calculations are then run over the data and uploaded back to a central repository.  This is a great way of making use of all of that idle processing power your computer has while sitting there doing nothing.

With hundreds of thousands of machines all around the world doing a little part they are able to contribute to something which is much greater. I came across some figures which show up to 300 years worth of research being done within a single year because of the World Community Grid.  If you would like to do something to help this is an easy way to get involved.