BOINC is a program that lets you donate your idle computer time to science projects like SETI@home, Climateprediction.net, Rosetta@home, World Community Grid, and many others.
After installing BOINC on your computer, you can connect it to as many of these projects as you like.
Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing (BOINC) is a non-commercial middleware system for volunteer computing, originally developed to support the SETI@home project, but intended to be useful for other applications in areas as diverse as mathematics, medicine, molecular biology, climatology, and astrophysics. The intent of BOINC is to make it possible for researchers to tap into the enormous processing power of personal computers around the world.
I have downloaded this, and it seems very cool so far. I haven't quite figured the entire thing out yet, but I am working on it. One of the projects I added was the SETI@Home project. I am pretty sure there is a way to see a star map, including your progress.
Either way, anyone who likes science and owns a computer should download this. What have you got to lose? It's a good way to give back to the world of science.