DARPA Crowdsources Bug-Spotting Games
DARPA debuts five different puzzle games to test whether players can spot mathematical flaws in open-source code used by the Defense Department
Want to keep the Department of Defense's computers secure? Then play a game.
That's the pitch from Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which is testing whether free online games can be used to help spot code flaws. "We're seeing if we can take really hard math problems and map them onto interesting, attractive puzzle games that online players will solve for fun," DARPA program manager Drew Dean said in a statement. "By leveraging players' intelligence and ingenuity on a broad scale, we hope to reduce security analysts' workloads and fundamentally improve the availability of formal verification."
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The effort -- dubbed the Crowd Sourced Formal Verification (CSFV) program -- is initially offering five different game titles, all of which are playable via a dedicated Verigames.com portal. The games aren't first-person shooters or action-adventure games, but rather puzzle games that contain mathematical models. "Solving the games provides mathematical proofs that can verify the absence of flaws or bugs," reads the Verigames site FAQ.
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