Using the information your device intermittently sends to us during the processing of a research task, we determine the likelihood of your device finishing the task before the completion deadline. If we determine that you are very likely to miss that deadline or you have already missed the deadline, we would send your device a trickle down message to instruct it to stop working on that research task and we then pass it along on to another volunteer.
There are two types of trickle down messages:
- Soft stop: Instruction for your device to continue until the next milestone before stopping the computation of the current research task. This happens when your device is not making sufficient progress on the current calculation. We would then hand over your partial result to another volunteer to continue working on.
- Hard stop: Instruction for your device to stop working on the current research task immediately. This happens when you have already passed the processing deadline without sending in the final full result or that there may be a communication error in sending us your progress. In this case, we would hand over the research task from the point of your last intermediate milestone to another volunteer to resume working on.
In either case, you will be awarded credit for the work you completed up to the point of the last checkpoint.
This mechanism allows work to be completed quicker and for the researchers to receive valuable results sooner.