GCP (EGG) Software
This page provides information on the requirements for GCP data collection and the equipment and software used.
PLEASE NOTE: We are not now enlarging the network, however, we are still open to adding Egg hosts in remote areas with little coverage. In any case, let the Project Director know if you are interested in hosting, in case we continue to enlarge the network.
To host an
Egg, which is our working name for an outlying data generation site for the Global Consciousness Project network, you need a specific type of hardware random event generator which we can supply, and the Egg-site software. The software can run on Linux or some other flavor of the Unix operating system, and we also have software for most versions of Windows later than NT/2000/XP.
Four REG devices have been used. Most are no longer available in 2014, but for Linux computers we can use the Alea 1, which uses a USB port. They others all plug into a serial port. One (ORION) is designed for a 25 pin serial port, or with an adapter will plug into a 9 pin; the others (PEAR PortREG, Mindsong) plug directly into a 9 pin port. Be sure to send your postal mailing address for shipping the REG if you plan to become a host.
The computer hosting an Egg must be connected to the internet, preferably with a a static (permanent) IP address. We can usually accommodate dynamic IP addresses with success if one or more of the parts stay constant. A Windows package called
iDDu-svc and authored by Echorunner (eeckart [ at ] gmail [.] com) is designed as an intelligent DynDNS updater, it runs as an NT service and keeps a dynamic IP in a single network range. Never out of beta form, it is worth trying if you connect via a router on LAN with remote web-administration access. The latest version of the iDDu-svc library is available in the software’s archived repository. Please refer to the iDDu readme to see if it looks like it might work for you, and before attempting to set up the service.
The computer hosting an Egg must run continuously, and it is desirable to have a continuous connection to the internet as well; if a dial-up connection is used it must be automated to connect at least once per day for a total of 15 to 20 minutes per day.
If the EGG computer is behind a firewall, or connected through a router, it must be programmed to forward UDP packets on port 2510 outgoing and port 1105 incoming. This allows the bidirectional communication required for the data to be transmitted. The Egg program sends an
awake packet when it has unsent data. The server in Princeton responds with a
data request packet, and then the EGG program will send the data.
The program you will run is called
eggsh in Linux and
egg.exe in Windows. It is designed to keep a proper pace without taking priority CPU time, and there should be no trouble or competition with other use of your machine, including moderate use of internet service. It is necessary for your machine to be running the NTP software or some other program to keep its clock synchronized with a stable time source. The configuration involves accurate time synchronization, for which we need correct timezone information for your host site as well. NOTE: We have found a second, more accessible timezone site. We also need your geographic location, which you can find with acceptable accuracy using this locator site.
Read the host readme for a little more information. The GCP software is Free Software, under the terms of the GNU General Public License.
If you need more information, get in touch with Roger Nelson for questions. If you are ready to get the software, you can request it by email.
Release 5.1 of the software is the current version for Linux operating systems, and is required for any machines that are not continuously connected to the internet. The program you need is
eggsh and it comes in a tarball called
eggware.tgz, which includes a sample configuration file and a little instruction, as well as a small test program called
regtest. For the most current model configuration file, see .eggrc (and also read the paragraph below on configuration). The installation is described in general instructions intended to help hosts with the setup, internet connections, and time synchronization. A useful tool for Linux users: Doug Piercy developed some scripts that monitor eggsh, and that will restart it if it is not running.
A version of the eggsh program that does not give any runtime feedback, and so does not need a window, is also available. This can be used in situations where an automatic startup after a reboot is necessary (compiled under RedHat 6.0; not thoroughly tested).
For those running Debian Linux, a new package with the GCP egg software is included in Debian 2.2, and can be found at debian.org.
If you have a different Linux or UNIX, you would need the source package (eggsrc.tgz), including a Makefile, via the Release 5.1 link. A larger package (eggsrcplus.tgz) has both source and different compiled versions of the data collection software. A very simple testing program that takes 200-bit trials in batches of 200, and displays them and their mean value is included in the packages.
A program written by Paul Bethke is available for Windows NT and Windows 2000, and is running successfully on both platforms, and on Windows XP, and Windows 7. The program, called EGG.exe can be downloaded by Egg hosts, along with Instructions which provide details. may be helpful if there is troubleshooting to do. Note that you must run Egg.exe as Administrator if your OS is Vista or Windows 7.
There is a small test program to see if the Egg is connected properly and generating good data. It is a zip file that can be downloaded as REGTest.zip.
In late 1011 we moved the GCP database and archiving system to a new server with a different name and address. After Egg.exe is installed you will need to run a program to change the server address in your registry. Please download NewBasket.exe to C:\GCP. Please run it in a Command Prompt window after downloading it. On Windows Vista and Windows 7 the Command Prompt window has to be run as Administrator. For a program to keep your clock synchronized if your OS does not have a built in function you can try AtomTime98 or Dimension 4. A built-in system clock synchronization program is standard in newer versions of Windows, however, its default update interval is much too long for the GCP Egg program purposes. You can learn more here.