US Naval Academy visit to EPCC

Author: Guest blogger
Posted: 26 Jun 2017 | 12:10

Our guest blogger is Prof. Carl Albing of the US Naval Academy. Prof. Albing and two students recently came to EPCC for a three-week study project.

Our three weeks here have flown by quickly. We came to study ARCHER and related HPC systems, specifically with regard to application placement and its effect on performance and energy use. The students, Ian and Kurt, are about to enter their final year of undergraduate study, both majoring in Computer Science. This internship was an opportunity to see, up close, how science gets done. We have some theories, are designing experiments to confirm or refute those theories, and building and/or learning the (software) tools to run those experiments and visualize the results. We are doing all this in a world-class research institution and one that is just different enough from our familiar environment that we know that we have been some place special.

As if three weeks weren't short enough, while here we have discovered so much more than just aspects related to our immediate project.  EPCC is an environment rich with interesting and relevant projects. Of particular interest to me, and in no particular order, are: Adept, the ARCHER Challenge, MPI-Bash, the Software Sustainability Institute, Cirrus (the SGI ICE XA system), Wee Archie, Wee Archlet, the supercomputing MOOC, and HPC education in various forms at Edinburgh.

I know the view from Arthur's Seat is inspiring - I know because I got up there last Saturday. It was amazing. But I also know, because I've been there myself, that the view from EPCC is exciting and inspiring. There are so many interesting things being worked on, and talented people doing them. Thank you for the opportunity to be here.

Andy was kind enough to be our official host, though Ben got the task of showing us around and meeting everyone. Daniel gave us a tour of the Advanced Computing Facility at Easter Bush; Michelle shared her office. The tour of the Crawford Collection was a special treat. And thank you to all the folks at EPCC who were friendly and welcoming, discussing their interests and sharing their expertise with us, and the folks from Cray who were so helpful and answered our questions. Thank you, all. We look forward to making good use of what we have gleaned from our visit here as well as possible further collaborations.

Photograph shows (left to right) Prof. Carl Albing, Ian MacLeod and Kurt Zepeda at the library of the Royal Observatory in Edinburgh.

Author

Prof. Carl Albing, US Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland