I just completed a fun project hooking up a dedicated low power, shoebox sized Windows Home Server to a University of California, Riverside project called QCN, or Quake Catcher Network. My home server now measures vibrations and sends the results to a central network. Very cool.
If you have a home server (or any recommended PC/laptop) and live in an area where the ground shakes a lot, you may want to take a look at using some of those cycles when your server is idle. More details on my setup and project at http://tekinerd.com/?page_id=123.
Andy, chief tekinerd, is a senior technology executive and entrepreneur who has worked for more than 24 years in the high tech local area networking, storage area networking, enterprise computing systems and semiconductor industries. Specializing in whole product cycle strategy formulation, new product development and marketing launch into both OEM and system builder channels, he has worked in several progressive positions in product development, field and product marketing, general management and CEO levels in both the US and Europe.