Debunking RAC FUD

last month

As promised I took a look at data presented which @buggy143 presented yesterday in his article named "Cheating in RAC through Prime grid".

I didn't put too much time in it and I have two uncertainties:

  • I haven't done any previous experiments with RAC calculation from the beginning. The first point might not be correct and the following points might be influenced by this. I have no other RAC point to correct for this.
  • These are specific data of a user who was actively changing the tasks and of which I do not have a full description of the circumstances

Still, my calculation yielded 6454.168 versus the real value of 6706.77 is only off by 3.7%. I think it is safe to say that @byggy143's claims are false. If I were to correct the first point to the average RAC increase of 331, which is the intend of the algorithm, the error would be 0.13%.

As stated by @vortac in the comments on the article the author did not do a proper research and started to present his own assumptions as facts which is a pity.

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I can't see how this proves that one can't cheat in RAC by abprting wus.


How would cheating RAC by aborting WUs work? Host only accumulate credit, and thus RAC with completed AND validated WUs. You can clearly see that in buggy143 host stats. Taking into account the credit that was earned one only those units and my knowledge of the RAC mechanism I ended up very close to the real RAC. Therefore I am quite convinced there is no cheating involved.

If I miss something please clarify further or contact me on slack.


Tomas and buggy143 probably think it's cheating when someone aborts longer PrimeGrid tasks and crunches only PPS Sieve tasks (which yield most credits proportionally). But that's not cheating. One can freely choose which subprojects to run through his PrimeGrid account and you are welcome to receive and crunch only PPS Sieve, if you wish so.

As I've explained multiple times now, it's PrimeGrid policy to reward PPS Sieve tasks with largest credits, since you cannot discover new primes that way. So you get some extra credits and, in turn, extra Gridcoins, so the incentive is now quite high to run only PPS Sieve, higher than originally anticipated. Of course, PrimeGrid exists since 2005. and nobody thought about rewarding BOINC credits with cryptocurrency then.

We can try to balance the game by incentivizing other PrimeGrid subprojects. In that case, we should publicly announce we will reward every new prime number discovered by some GRC (either from the Foundation or through donations). That would get us plenty of attention on PrimeGrid forums and would further boost our 'science-friendly' image.


In that case I'm willing to understand the 'cheating' phrasing. But that is not new indeed. It's more cherry picking, and as you say, the system allows it. As I have mentioned before BOINC was never set up to be used the way gridcoin uses it. There are many issues and this is indeed one of them. Credit is assigned as the projects like and wasn't set up with Gridcoin in mind. In my defense: if that was what they were intending to explain they should have made it more obvious.