Blog

Changing technology – thinking about digital preservation

Author: Alistair Grant
Posted: 7 May 2013 | 13:52

How do we deal with technology change? Ever thought about accessing the stuff you did twenty years ago? What’s that? You are having a hard time getting a floppy disk drive? Maybe the data format is unreadable or the media has been damaged? 8-inch, 5,25-inch, and 3,5-inch floppy disks: Public Domain 7 June 2009: George Chernilevsky

This is a problem that will continue to face us in many fields: how do you ensure that today’s data is still accessible in twenty or even fifty years' time? For a lot of areas, maybe we do not want to bother, it's the here and now that counts.

McMPI

Author: Daniel Holmes
Posted: 3 May 2013 | 15:18

This article originally appeared in the Cisco blog by Jeff Squires and was written while I was undertaking a PhD before I joined EPCC as a member of staff. I thought it would be of interest to folks reading this blog.

My PhD involved building a message passing library using C#; not accessing an existing MPI library from C# code but creating a brand new MPI library written entirely in pure C#. The result is McMPI (Managed-code MPI), which is compliant with MPI-1 – as far as it can be given that there are no language bindings for C# in the MPI Standard. It also has reasonably good performance in micro-benchmarks for latency and bandwidth both in shared-memory and distributed-memory.

OpenACC in Umeå

Author: Nick Johnson
Posted: 2 May 2013 | 14:08

I'm just back from giving my first PRACE training session as part of the joint PRACE/SNIC* Spring School based at Umeå Univeristat in northern Sweden. For those whose Nordic geography is like mine, here's a map...

A library for changing between different data decompositions

Author: Stephen Booth
Posted: 2 May 2013 | 13:32

I'm currently working on a small library to support decomposition changes in parallel programs.

It turns out that a fairly simple interface can be used to describe a very large space of possible data decompositions. I'm therefore writing a library that can redistribute data between any two such decompositions.

Sunshine, snow and persistent data infrastructure

Author: Rob Baxter
Posted: 1 May 2013 | 11:00

The high desert in New Mexico

I've recently returned from a very interesting week-long tour of the southwestern USA. Work-related, of course. I and a handful of European colleagues from the EUDAT project were graciously hosted by three groups all engaged in data infrastructure work on the other side of the Atlantic.

After flying into what must be one of the world's smallest and cutest airports in Santa Fe, our first stop was Los Alamos National Lab and the Web science group led by Herbert Van de Sompel.

We've won gold!

Author: Nick Johnson
Posted: 1 May 2013 | 09:36

Last Thursday (25th April) saw the prizegiving for the University Sustainability Awards. We've been involved with the awards for a few years now and have seen them change and adapt as we have. Last year EPCC won a Silver and this year we have achieved the top award, Gold.

EASC2013 presentations now online

Author: Adrian Jackson
Posted: 30 Apr 2013 | 14:00

All the slides from the keynote speeches at EASC2013, the Exascale conference held in Edinburgh this April, are now available online through the conference website.

The keynote slides can be found on the invited speakers page.

GULP: HPC simulations of complex solids and clusters using static lattice techniques

Author: Iain Bethune
Posted: 29 Apr 2013 | 07:09

Inter-crystalline boundaries in ZSM-5

Materials science - understanding how the microscopic structure of matter gives rise to macroscopic properties of materials - is one of EPSRC's key research areas, with applications in fields as diverse as energy storage, electronics, fabrics and nanotechnology.  EPCC helps develop a number of important simulation codes in this area such as CP2K, GROMACS, and in this project GULP, the General Utility Lattice Program.

Scaling to thousands of GPUs on Titan

Author: Alan Gray
Posted: 26 Apr 2013 | 10:45

We have been among the first researchers to take advantage of the massive amounts of computing power available on the world's fastest "Titan" supercomputer (based at Oak Ridge National Laboratory). The full machine will boast 18 thousand GPUs, and just under half of these have been made available recently. We have shown that our highly scalable "Ludwig" soft matter physics application can efficiently take advantage of at least 8192 GPUs in parallel.

Don't forget the people - a fractured training landscape

Author: Simon Hettrick
Posted: 24 Apr 2013 | 11:43

In his keynote address at the EGI Community Forum, Peter Coveney described the need to combat the fragmentation of e-Infrastructure. Unlike other talks I have seen on this subject, Peter’s focus went beyond the hardware "it’s not just the tin and iron boxes but the software and - most importantly - the people". It is the human capital, the well informed and correctly trained researchers, that we need to make the most of e-Infrastructure.

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Contact

Tracy Peet
+44 (0) 131 650 5362
t.peet@epcc.ed.ac.uk