Hunting Child Pornographers With a 1.8 Petaflop Supercomputer

Bad news, child pornographers: you're now being hunted by a supercomputer. Over the course of the next year, one million processing hours on Jaguar, Oak Ridge Labs' 1.8 petaflop supercomputer, will be dedicated to ferreting out child porn's loathsome producers.

Overwhelmed with the prospect of ferreting out child pornographers on a big, sick internet with manpower, Grier Weeks, the executive director of the National Association to Protect Children, appealed to the computer scientists at Oak Ridge, a national computing laboratory outside of Knoxville, Tennessee. They quickly agreed to lend the help of Jaguar, one of the fastest supercomputers in the world.

Robert Patton, the lead investigator at Oak Ridge, has developed a series of algorithms that evaluate P2P traffic, flag child porn searches, and watch how various IP addresses respond to the queries. With time, the investigators hope, they'll be able to determine where exactly the illicit material is coming from. I'd imagine that even the most deranged criminals will understand that hiding from a supercomputer is probably an exercise in futility. [New Scientist]