Mario Antonioletti's blog

Broadcasting your shell output

Author: Mario Antonioletti
Posted: 18 Oct 2018 | 12:47

During a Software Carpentry course you, as an instructor, stand in front of a class typing your lesson content, eg bash or git, and the students type what you type into their own shell.

Depending on the layout of the room, you need to make the font on your terminal large enough for all students to see it, which can be somewhat disorientating as an instructor. Moreover if the layout of the room is not ideal, eg some students are facing away from the screen, they will have to constantly turn to see the screen, which can be a pain for them. But I recently found a Python app that changes all that.

Inaugural Edinburgh Research Software Engineering (RSE) Meeting

Author: Mario Antonioletti
Posted: 30 Sep 2018 | 20:28

Edinburgh just held its inaugural Research Software Engineer (RSE) meeting at the Bayes Centre (also home to EPCC). It was attended by about 50 people from the Edinburgh area. If you don't know what a Research Software Engineer is, I urge you to look at Andy's slides for context and background.

Bang Goes the Borders 2018

Author: Mario Antonioletti
Posted: 28 Sep 2018 | 09:29

While a team of EPCCers were doing outreach in London at New Scientist Live (NSLive) for a second year running, another group of us attended Bang Goes the Borders (BGTB) at St Mary's Primary School in Melrose, which is mostly attended by children aged from 5-12 with their parents. For us this is a relatively local event and this is the eighth year that we been there. It is only a day event but a pretty busy one.

A 20th anniversary reunion at EPCC

Author: Mario Antonioletti
Posted: 28 Jul 2018 | 15:12

From 1987 until 2001 EPCC ran a Summer Scholarship Programme (SSP), which provided funding for undergraduate students from all over the world to come to EPCC for a ten-week period. General high performance computing (HPC) training was provided during the first week with the remaining nine weeks spent on an HPC-related project and writing a summary project of what was achieved. There was great competition for places, resulting in an extremely high standard of students taking part. This summer the 1998 SSP contingent decided to reunite, 20 years after they first came to Edinburgh as SSPers.

Big Bang Fair 2018: a success!

Author: Mario Antonioletti
Posted: 31 Mar 2018 | 19:16

For the third year running a group of us from EPCC attended the Big Bang Fair (BBF) at the NEC in Birmingham through the ARCHER Outreach programme. BBF provides an excellent opportunity to show a wide range of young people what supercomputing is about and encourage them to adopt careers in STEM-based subjects. 

We are writing our activities up to encourage others to try doing supercomputing outreach and show that you do not need fancy equipment. For more information see the ARCHER's Ambassador pack or GitHub where we develop these. We enourage you to feedback or collaborate with us.

Installing Python packages in virtual environments

Author: Mario Antonioletti
Posted: 22 Mar 2018 | 11:46

I recently looked into whether the Python package PyQt5 could be installed on Cirrus, a Tier-2 national service, on behalf of one of our HPC Europa visitors. The Cirrus documentation recommends that you do this using virtual environments and provides a helpful example. However, the problem is that if you subsequently use pip or easy_install to install additional Python packages within the virtual environment you will get a permission denied as it tries to install the package centrally to directories you do not have access rights to. I eventually managed to find a solution.

Big science! EPCC at the EISF 2018

Author: Mario Antonioletti
Posted: 13 Mar 2018 | 11:04

EPCC will be at the Edinburgh International Science Festival (EISF) from Saturday March 31st until Wednesday April 4th with our exhibit Doing Big Science on Supercomputers.

EPCC at the Big Bang Fair 2018

Author: Mario Antonioletti
Posted: 7 Mar 2018 | 17:27

For the third year running, EPCC (under the Archer banner) will be at the Big Bang Fair in Birmingham, explaining how scientists are using the ARCHER service to perform world-class science. 

SOPA Software Carpentry

Author: Mario Antonioletti
Posted: 2 Mar 2018 | 11:57

Recently, with my Software Sustainability Institute (SSI) hat on, we helped to deliver a Software Carpentry Course here at Edinburgh organised by the School of Physics and Astronomy (SOPA). My fellow instructors were my EPCC colleagues Mike Jackson and Neelofer Banglawala, and SOPA's Andy Washbrook.

It's not all work and no play

Author: Mario Antonioletti
Posted: 23 Feb 2018 | 08:41

As a large part of our MSc cohort comprises students from outside the UK, and with the HPC Europa 3 programme currently bringing in researchers from mainland Europe, I thought it would be nice to invite our visitors to experience some traditional Scottish culture: a ceilidh.

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