May 1, 2008
Harvey Wasserman from the Science-Driven System Architecture Team has been chosen as chair of the technical program for SC07, which will take place in Reno in November.
COGNITIVE COMPUTING, BETTER SEARCHING
NERSC and CITRIS, the Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society, co-hosted two meetings at UC Berkeley this month that focused on cognitive computing and online search technologies. NERSC Director Horst Simon gave the opening remark in both meetings, which attracted a total of 400 people from around the world.
The first meeting, “Cognitive Computing, a Multi-Disciplinary Synthesis of Neuroscience, Computer Science, Mathematics, Cognitive Neuroscience, and Information Theory” examined how scientists and engineers can build computer systems to become more flexible and adaptable, much like how the human brain and nervous system work.
The second meeting, “The Future of Search,” brought together UC Berkeley scientists and industry leaders, such as Yahoo, Microsoft and Google, to set search goals for building next-generation search engines. During the meeting, attendees discussed how to reach the ultimate goal of creating search engines with cognitive and natural language capabilities.
More information about the cognitive computing meeting can be found at . Learn more about the future of search at http://www.citris-uc.org/FutureSearch.
VISIT FROM STUTTGART
Michael Resch, the head of the High Performance Computing Center Stuttgart (HLRS) visited NERSC last month, a stop-over to discuss issues facing both supercomputer centers. Resch spoke with NERSC staff about plans for upgrading systems and supporting scientists. They also chatted about operating energy-saving, large-scale supercomputers.
HLRS is part of the University of Stuttgart in Germany. Resch, who serves as the director at the university’s Department of High Performance Computing, also discussed a plan by the president of the university, Wolfram Ressel, to visit NERSC in October.
“I’ve known NERSC and Horst Simon for a long time, and I was especially impressed that NERSC is able to keep a leading position in HPC over such a long time,” Resch said.
NEW TO THE TEAM
Several people recently joined NERSC as full-time staff members, serving as experts in areas such as storage, system infrastructure, network and security. Here is a short introduction of the new team members:
Michael Welcome, who is now a member of the Mass Storage Group, has over 23 years experience in the field of computing and computational science. For the past seven years, Welcome has worked in the Future Technology Group within the Computational Research Division of Berkeley Lab, doing both application performance analysis and low-level network and interconnect programming. His recent projects include porting GASNet, the Berkeley UPC runtime system, to the Cray XT3/XT4, as well as porting and optimizing Miranda, a Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) hydrodynamics code, to the LLNL BlueGene system.
Welcome also analyzed the performance of a CCSE adaptive mesh refinement code on a collection of high-end systems, including the Cray X1 at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, IBM Power 5 at NERSC and the NASA Columbia system.
Previously, Welcome had worked in the NERSC Computational Systems Group, managing the Cray T3E and the J90 cluster as well as writing and maintaining the client-side accounting and account management software. Prior to this, Welcome worked at LLNL from 1983-1996 developing adaptive mesh refinement codes for both compressible and incompressible fluid dynamics.
Jason Lee, who just joined the Networking, Security, Servers and Workstations Group, holds a master’s degree in computer science from San Francisco State University. Lee has worked at Berkeley Lab for the last 15 years, working on projects that range from developing a parallel storage system to grid architecture in the Global Grid Forum. More recently, he worked on Bro, a network intrusion detection system developed by the Lab and the International Computer Science Institute. Lee was involved in the early quality-of-service (QoS) network tests with Van Jacobson back in 1994, when Jacobson was the head of the Network Research Group at the Lab and was known for his work on improving IP network performance and scaling.
Lee worked on carrying out some of the first gigabit test beds, including the Multidimensional Applications and Gigabit Internetwork Consortium (MAGIC) project in 1993, Bay Area Gigabit Network (BAGNet) in 1995 and National Transparent Optical Network (NTON) in 1997. He also worked with the Advanced Internet Research group at the University of Amsterdam on 10-Gbps transatlantic links in 2002.
Tina Declerck recently retruned to the NERSC’s Computational Systems Group after working there from 1997 through 2001. In her previous tenure at NERSC she managed the PDSF and Cray J90 SV1 clusters. During her hiatus, she worked at Sistina Software, the company that developed the Global File System (GFS) and was later bought by Red Hat.
At Sistina, Declerck was in charge of growing and managing the customer support team.
At 3Ware, which manufactures SATA RAID controllers, she defined new product features, acted as the primary interface between the field support and engineering teams, provided technical training to resellers and worked on I/O performance and tuning.
Now back at NERSC, Declerck is the system lead for the SGI Altix named DaVinci, and she provides secondary support on Franklin, the Cray XT4, that was recently installed.
Zhengji Zhao joined the NERSC’s User Services Group after working for three years as a postdoc in the Computational Research Division’s Scientific Computing Group (SCG) at Berkeley Lab. In SCG, she worked on developing new methodologies for computational nanoscience: the linear scaling 3D fragment (LS3DF) method for large-scale electronic structure calculations and other methods.
Zhao received her Ph.D. in computational physics from New York University for developing the reduced density matrix (RDM) method, a highly accurate alternative to wavefunction-based computational chemistry methods. She received a master’s degree in computer science from the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, New York University; a master’s degree in theoretical physics from Peking University in Beijing, China; and a bachelor’s degree in theoretical physics from Jilin University in Changchun, China.
Akbar Mokhtarani came to NERSC from Berkeley Lab’s High Energy and Nuclear Physics Computing Group, where he supported the BaBar detec- tor at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Mokhtarani Center (SLAC) and the IceCube and Majorana experiments. His responsibilities included migrating a database to new software, working on a Java/C++ monitoring system and building and packaging simulation software.
Mokhtarani, who is in the Mass Storage Group, is now applying his database and software development skills to the SciDAC Petascale Data Storage Institute (PDSI), for which he is gathering data and reporting on storage and file system reliability, and working on I/O benchmarking of selected petascale applications. He also works closely with NERSC’s Science- Driven System Architecture Group and the team in charge of the Global File System.
About NERSC and Berkeley Lab
The National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) is a U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science User Facility that serves as the primary high-performance computing center for scientific research sponsored by the Office of Science. Located at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the NERSC Center serves more than 7,000 scientists at national laboratories and universities researching a wide range of problems in combustion, climate modeling, fusion energy, materials science, physics, chemistry, computational biology, and other disciplines. Berkeley Lab is a DOE national laboratory located in Berkeley, California. It conducts unclassified scientific research and is managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy. »Learn more about computing sciences at Berkeley Lab.