Category Archives: HPC

What do you get when you mix 21st Century HPC SMEs with 1st Century BC History?

The 5th Annual Spain Conference! Hosted by the Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC) in partnership with the HPC Advisory Council (HPCAC) and member sponsors Dell Inc., Mellanox Technologies and DDN Storage the one day conference takes place next Wednesday in León and will feature leading collaborations taking place within and beyond Spain’s borders. This year’s agenda underscores the collaborations that are critical to deriving the ‘answer’.

We’ll meet PhD powerhouse Rosa Badia, the driving force in development of programming models for complex platforms will share insights into BSC’s Big Data initiatives. National Research prize winner and author Dr. Jose Duato, whose work influenced routing algorithm designs in Sun’s Magnum switch and supercomputing class systems IBM BlueGene/L and Cray T3E, joins from the Universitat Politècnica de València to discuss ‘rCUDA’ and ongiong developments in remote GPU virtualization including the frameworks futures in cloud computing. We’ll also welcome Álvaro Fernández González and the Fundación Centro de Supercomputación (FSCSL) – the Castiella y Llión region’s research consortium exploring everything from optimizing energy efficiency and ROI of classic HPC architectures to stimulating economic development by partnering with local industry to drive innovation into comercial R&D.

There’s also the heavy hitter line-up of technologists. Co-founder of OpenMPI and 12 year veteran of two US labs, Richard Graham will examine the Co-Design collaboration opportunities that are going to be critical in achieving new breakthroughs. Our annual Swiss Conference host, Hussein Harake joins from CSCS to share his engineering insights and parallel file system fundamentals following his in-depth evaluation of BeeGFS. We’ll also welcome Tommaso Cecchi, who joined DDN after 12 years with the Italian consortium CINECA. Cecchi does a deep dive on DDN’s Infinite Memory Engine – flash cache for PFS. Representing one of many foundation members coined (by another of our presenters) the ‘rebel alliance’, IBMer Martina Naughton reveals the force of OpenPOWER providing analysis and lessons learned from various applied research projects and the complex systems that were required to address very real world problems. Dell’s (and My Favorite) Martin Hilgeman brings perspectives of a system builder to the massively parallel performance discussion – examining the continuous advances in multi-core architectures and its impact on users and computational work.

The day starts and ends with industry insights from industry notables Dan Olds and Addison Snell, both longtime contributors to our mission – from the conferences to the student cluster competitions and so much more! DanO sheds his SCC color commentary to kick-off the day with a new take on what is seemingly the hot topic in HPC these days – High Performance Interconnects (HPI). Ever the watcher over the technology industry the former Gabriel Consulting founder’s new venture with industry strategy and research firm OrionX brings him to us for the day to expand upon their recently published analysis of the HPI market, its futures and evaluation considerations. Marking ten years of Intersect360 Research success, we commemorate this accomplishment featuring company founder and HPC veteran Addison Snell as this year’s ‘end note’ – a retrospective of the HPC industry over the last decade and predictions of what it will look like a decade from now and results from the firms most recent end-user study.

I am really excited about next week thanks to all of you – our wonderful hosts and generous sponsors, all of our presenters and participants – and your teams, organizations and yours as well! The sharing of expertise, the consideration of time and support are gifts, greatly appreciated! Having the honor of putting brilliant people together with brilliant people, where amazing things happen … is for me anyway…‘the answer’!

See you in León! If you can’t make Spain we have an incredible line-up next month as well at our China Conference! And of course save the date for Stanford (07-08 Feb, 2017) and Lugano (10-12 Apr, 2017)!

SCC cliffhanger …

On June 22, more than seventy students competing in the annual Student Cluster Competition (SCC) gathered in Frankfurt Germany for the final award ceremony where for the third time, South Africa’s Centre for High Performance Computing (CHPC) student team came away as the 2016 SCC Grand Champions. Marking their third win and the SCC’s first ‘three-peat” champions, CHPC narrowly edged out this year’s overall runner-up Tsinghua University, unseating the champion team from China from their own SCC incumbency during the last two years.

SCC 2016 Overall Winners South Africa’s Centre for High Performance Computing Student Team: Avi Bank, Leanne Johnson, Craig Bester, Ashley Naudé, Sabeehah Ismail, Andries Bingani.                          Also pictured: Pak Lui, Gilad Shainer and Thomas Sterling
SCC 2016 Overall Winners South Africa’s Centre for High Performance Computing Student Team

An ongoing rivalry, both frontrunner teams entered the world championship as the competitions’ only two, two time overall champions and finished this year with the closest final scores of any competition to date. China’s top two entries from the Asian Student Challenge (ASC) fared well with ASC overall winner Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST) returning home with the SCC LINPACK award and ASC runner-up Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) ranking third in the SCC’s overall winner circle. Winning the hearts and minds of ISC attendees Universitat Politècnica De Catalunya Barcelona Tech (UPC) – team ‘Thunderstruck’ – garnered the most votes to be recognized as the 2016 SCC Fan Favorite.

A truly international competition, the 2016 roster included teams from Estonia, Germany, Singapore; one additional team from China and three teams from the U.S., along with the winners’ circle teams representing South Africa, China and the Catalonian Province of Spain. Returning teams included Germany’s own University of Hamburg along with Estonia’s University of Tartu.

China’s Tsinghua University, HUST and SJTU were joined by another SCC veteran team the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC). The U.S. debuted three new freshman entries including the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) which consisted of a combined team of two high-school students and undergraduates from Queens University (Canada), University of Missouri and Harvard University. Also participating were Boston Green team students from MIT, Boston University and Northeastern University; and two very experienced teams from Purdue University and University of Colorado, Boulder that also combined forces. The final debut team also marked the competitions first city-state entry with Singapore’s team entry from Nanyang Technological University.

In addition to new entries, the balance of SCC teams with one or more years of experience returned with a roster comprised of almost entirely new members. One constant beyond a team name and every team’s most critical asset is the team advisor(s). Teams may have up to two advisors but students must rely solely on their own abilities once the competition starts. Teams work with their advisors and other mentors and begin preparing well in advance of the competition, sacrificing spare time and forgoing time off during school breaks to finalize sponsorships, refine designs, secure and test systems, characterize, run and optimize applications, refine benchmarking and troubleshooting prowess. Their advanced work as a team is often a major contributor to their overall performance and potential presence at the closing ceremony. Needless to say, students give up a lot in order to compete but also learn a lot as a result of competing.

The annual competitions run from the opening to the close of the ISC exhibition. Teams execute a variety of known benchmarks along with ‘mystery applications’ which are revealed prior to the daily start and strive to obtain the best results possible from technology platforms of their own design. This year, in addition to the ‘known’ HPL and HPCC benchmarks, teams encountered Splotch, Graph500 and WRF which were chosen for their unique characteristics: WRF for its I/O usage and scalability; Graph500’s requirement to implement code and algorithm; Splotch for its heavy I/O plus its post processing and visualization capabilities prompting teams to generate a video as part of the mission. ‘Cloverleaf’, this year’s secret mission, challenged teams to determine which hardware components to remove or keep to draw the least amount of power. Where teams can prepare well in advance for the ‘known applications’ the added combination of mystery applications and secret challenges helps students learn how to run, compile and troubleshoot issues and comprehend the effect of the system components and their effects on performance.

With a total run-time just under nineteen hours, the competition kicks-off with the team shirt scramble where each student must find their team shirt before a team can begin running the first benchmark and culminates at the annual award ceremony. While every competition of a similar kind maintains specific requirements and run-times, the SCC is unique by design. Intentionally infusing fun, team building activities with free time to allow teams to get to know each other, attend conference sessions and experience some of the culture and attractions of the host city.

Launched in 2012, the SCC is the result of a visionary collaboration and partnership between the ISC Group and the HPC Advisory Council (HPCAC). What was started as an international friendly has transcended borders and helped bridge the global HPC community; from inspiring comparable national competitions in China and South Africa to supporting efforts underway in India and elsewhere. China’s ASC now hosts more than two hundred teams in their own national competition each year and in addition to sending its top winners to SCC, teams from the U.S. and South Africa competitions also vie to compete in the annual ISC-HPCAC challenge.

SCC 2016 Award Ceremony
SCC 2016 Award Ceremony

While the STEM challenge is as significant as the need for a skilled workforce, the ISC Group, HPCAC are helping to make inroads in fulfilling the demand. Over the last five years twenty-six international teams and more than two hundred students have competed at the annual ISC competitions. SCC  teams have represented all but one of earth’s habitable continents, the lost continent a consequence of a team withdrawing its participation. Students, their team advisors and academic affiliations from Brazil, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Estonia, Germany, India, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain along with the U.K. and U.S. have been an integral part of the SCC’s ongoing success and have been key to enticing more countries, institutions, industries, teams, students and professionals to take part in the coming years competitions.

In fact, we’re accepting team submissions for the 2017 competition as of today (it’s on the next page over under press releases … or on the competition page)!

For me it’s sort of like an SCC ‘cliffhanger’ …

… which teams return … does the rivalry continue between South Africa and China … maybe Estonia or Hamburg or Singapore or a team from the US or any one of these brilliant teams could finally have their day or new entry could come in and own it  … all of that and more … is yet to be determined …! Once you meet these students, you’ll understand why we’re already counting the days until next June!  These teams, those students, this competition … AMAZING!

As we close out the fifth year of competition we extend our congratulations and thanks to the 2016 winners and all of the competing teams, their advisors, academic affiliations and sponsors! We also thank the ISC Group, Dan Olds and Gabriel Consulting, our HPCAC chair and SCC MC Gilad Shainer, our social media mavens and mavericks and all of the dedicated experts, individuals, teams, volunteers, members and partners for your ongoing support and contribution to the success of SCC and to all the ISC attendees who took time to meet with the student and HPCAC teams!

I close my first SCC owing my most humbled thanks to the two SCC Stars, true HPCAC heroes Pak Lui and David Cho – for everything and more over my last six months of firsts, for the last five and the many years ahead of SCC success for all they do every day … for me and many … and then some! And always … ALWAYS … with a smile! Thank you both!

Thank you ~ All!

Picking Faves …

The official countdown on the Student Cluster Competition  (SCC) site ticks down the few remaining hours, minutes and seconds from tomorrow’s kick-off!

If you’re attending the ISC High Performance 2016 conference and exhibition at Messe Frankfurt join us at the HPCAC booth (#1442) for the Monday kick-off at 15:00 which starts with the traditional T-shirt scramble.

This year marks a milestone ~ Five years of SCC!

I’m guessing the big match is between the Tsinghua University and Centre for High Performance Computing (CHPC) teams as they battle it out in the two time champion tie-breaker.

There’s also the two ASC winners, HUST and SJTU returning to SCC after a two year hiatus. And SCC veterans like USTC, UPC, Tartu and the Purdue University, University of Colorado, Boulder combo. All solid, experienced contenders! There’s the new entrants, like Nanyang, NERSC and the Green Team. And of course local favorite University of Hamburg. It’s anyone’s competition (and guess)!

One of the major elements ISC attendees can directly influence is to vote for your favorite team! Stop by and meet these teams, learn their stories, impart some of your own wisdom and vote!

The competition ends with the Wednesday award ceremony – now at 17:15 in Panorama 2. Awards go to the team to receive the most unique votes in the “Fan Favorite” category, the team to achieve the highest score for the LINPACK award and three awards for “Overall” to the top three teams with the best combined scores for applications, benchmarks and team interviews.

While the competition only runs for three days it has been ongoing for the last seven months and last 48 months or so before that … all thanks to one super human Pak Lui! Mentor, Master of Competition… and just about everything else. Always with a smile. He is amazing!

Twelve teams, somewhere over seventy students. Include the advisors and that’s north of one hundred individuals taking part in the 2016 competition. Thank you Pak! Thank you teams and team advisors too!

My thanks also to the exceptional team at the ISC Group and all of the teams that have helped put this conference and competition together, to David, Tong and our team judges and to Kim McMahon of McMahon Consulting and Dan Olds of Gabriele Consulting along with a host of others and of course to the teams sponsors for their support of the SCC and students. Thank you all! So much!

As I became more familiar with this awesome event it occurred to me that picking a favorite would be more a challenge than I thought … so instead (and since I am not eligible to vote) I pick … all of the above! All my faves for so many reasons! Thank you gang and good luck!

If you can’t make it to ISC watch your social feeds and  visit the Student Cluster Competition site! And share!

It’s been great leading in to this competition and while ISC promises a busy week for all I hope you’ll have some time for the teams! Look forward to seeing you here or the next!

The immediate event horizon & HPCAC happenings across the world.

Six months into my role with the HPC Advisory Council and … I am ‘lovin it’. Great to love what you do, it’s why you do it .

The first two annual conferences in partnership with Steve Jones and the Stanford High Performance Computing Center and Hussein Harake and the Centro Svizzero di Calcolo Scientifico (CSCS) were exceptional! That’s from feedback received from hundreds of attendees not just anecdotal from me. Success is thanks to our generous member sponsors, gracious hosts, exceptional experts and awesome attendees! In fact we’ve already set the 2017 schedule for both – so mark your diaries!

On the more immediate event horizon there’s a ton going on – across the world.

Our STEM student competitions are growing – in participation and awareness! It’s pretty amazing to be part of a program squarely focused on the future and our future workforce, underscoring our primary education and outreach mission and that is in fact making a profound difference. Worldwide.

On the home front Pak Lui is gearing up for Germany and the fifth Student Cluster Competition (SCC). SCC has become a key part of the annual ISC – The HPC Event – thanks to the ISC Group and another truly collaborative partnership! And thanks to Pak’s leadership! His commitment to teams over the last eight plus months and dedication to the competition throughout the last five years has challenged students to learn – plus they learn from a master! In just over a week 12 international teams congregate at this worldwide championship where he’ll challenge their capabilities and award their accomplishments. It’s a model that works so well it inspired follow-on competitions. Come meet Pak and the teams, experience the competition and spend some time with us during ISC! And it’s never too late to consider partnering with us to help sponsor our future!

Speaking of student competitions, we also recently announced the kick-off of this year’s RDMA Programming Competition being held in China through October. Now in its third year, our own Tong Liu, Director of the HPC Advisory Council Asia, leads the RDMA competition he started in 2013 with just over 20 teams. Last year more than 50 teams participated from different universities and colleges throughout China. With the 2016 competition underway it promises even greater interest and participation given the focus on deep learning and the attention it’s garnered from some major deep thinkers and doers! Check it out!

As for the more immediate event calendar and your radar.

Beyond ISC I am still determining the possibility of an alternate plan to the annual Brazil conference held each August. Returning as initially planned was its own challenge on top of competing with the Summer Olympics. August is now so near … time flies! If I can determine a ‘plan b’ I’ll let you know.

What I am happy to share is the official call for contributed talks for the 5th Annual BSC/ HPCAC Spain Conference in September. This year’s conference will take place in León in the Northwest of Spain at Parador San Marcos on 21 Septiembre – following the 10th Annual RES conference. More information and agenda will be posted over the coming months. For now … submit a session proposal, become a sponsor , you can even register! Just get ready to explore HPC and experience history – simultaneously!

Capping our collaborative event calendar, as you read in the RDMA Programming Competition announcement, we plan to host our China 2016 conference in Xi’an in October. Please add that to your schedules as well! I am excited to experience the conference, the competition – and China! I am certain to learn a lot from the competitions impressive list of expert advisors, HPCAC peers and members on the other side of the pond. Several firsts for me and very amazing!

So that’s a recap of where we’ve been, are and where we’re headed! Before you head out for ISC and summer holiday I wanted to give you a heads-up for planning – and welcome our newest and thank all of our HPCAC members! It’s pretty staggering to be sitting in this seat … it’s an impressive group doing amazing things! Truly my honor!

Thanks to all of you for your support and for everything you do!

Til the next …

Emerging Technology ~ ‘EMiT’ 2016 ~ Register Today!

Explore the cutting edge of computing at EMiT 2016 being hosted 02-03 June, 2016 at the Barcelona Supercomputing Center.

Along with a great line-up of invited talks, registration includes a visit to the Torre Girona Chapel and conference dinner at the city harbor.

HPCAC member High End Compute (HEC) in the UK and their 2016 EMiT chair Michael Bayne invite you to meet with key figures in the emerging computing communities. Discuss cutting edge advancements in technologies and techniques. Topics will explore the latest trends in hardware development for novel computing; how to exploit emerging tech for application development and focus on new techniques, their development and how to transfer to new areas. And much more.

Additional information, agenda and registration is available at the EMiT website: www.emit.tech

Hurry and register today ~ before registration closes ~ Thursday 26 May, 2016!

~cydney

ISC 2015 event

The Top 10 Things I Liked about ISC15

Hello all!  My long over-due post on the Top 10 Things I liked about ISC15. Work, life, and health got in the way after the conference. I am caught up and ready to remember the good times in Frankfurt by listing my Top 10.

 

1. Women in HPC Workshop on Thursday afternoon
Now it’s not just because I was on one of the panels. It was a really good workshop! The technical presentations were very interesting. The lively discussion on diversity in HPC not only opened my eyes, but it also has opened up a lot of questions. I look forward to the continued discussion!

 

2. Catching up
I didn’t know Terry worked for HP now (great to see you!). Or that Paul was changing jobs, or that Mark was now at Dot Hill. I guess LinkedIn updates are not keeping me up to date. Great to see you all!

 

3. New friends
I know I am at risk for missing someone, but I will still name a few names: Toni, Alison, Nages, Anna, Patricia, Wendy, Brian. We had talked via email, but hadn’t gotten to know each other face-to-face. We had some great conversations and laughs at the Executive Lounge in the Marriott!

 

4. Technologies
I didn’t have much time to see booths other than my customer’s booths, so my opinion here may be a little skewed. But did you see the Smart City demo in Numascale’s booth? Great use of Big Data and compute power. NICE Software always shows great demos of modeling and simulation in the cloud – yes you can collaborate remotely in real-time!

 

5. Attendees
Congratulations ISC on breaking a record on the number of attendees!

 

6. Presentations
I was actively tweeting from Analyst Crossfire and Vendor Showdown. Lots of great sound bites. One of my favorites from Barry Bolding – “Everyone needs a Cray”. (Maybe you had to be there…)

 

7. Parties
I was a party-pooper this year opting for visiting with old and new friends. But there is one that I didn’t miss – its great at every ISC and SC – Beers-on-Bright.

 

8. My Roomie
As many of you know Lara and I are great friends, colleagues, partners, and marketers for this industry. After a long day of meetings, networking, and working, we still have the energy to chat and catch up. It’s a great way to end the day!

 

9. Germany – Did not Disappoint!
The food, old town, the weather, walking around. It was very nice.

 

10. On beyond Germany.
I visited Paris, Milan, and London before coming home. Great times, lots of pictures, and great food and wine!

 

As always, I want to hear your favorites. Feel free to add a comment on this post, on my website, or Twitter.

See you all in Austin!

Kim11-1024x819-300x239

The HPCAC Conference in Brazil

We had the first HPC Advisory Council conference in Brazil. Held together with the Sao Paulo University. We hosted around 70 HPC professionals and 50 students from the University.

The conference was sponsored by Inspur, NVIDIA, SGI, Supermicro and Newwald. InsideHPC covered the event and videos can be found on www.insidehpc.com. The presentations from the conference can be found on http://www.hpcadvisorycouncil.com/events/2014/brazil-workshop/agenda.php

For me it was my first visit in Brazil. Probably would be better to do it one month after (the world cup….) but still, was happy to be there. Great people, great food and increase usage of HPC for many applications.

I want to thank Alexandre Ramos from the University of Sao Paulo that helped us with organizing the conference.

HPCAC_Brazil_2014

Gilad Shainer

HPCAC Swiss Conference

An overdue post…. Mid-March we had the 4th HPC Advisory Council Swiss conference, hosted together with the Swiss supercomputer center. 120 Attendees participated in the conference and we would like to thank them and to thank the presenters and the sponsors. The presentations can be view at

http://www.hpcadvisorycouncil.com/events/2013/Switzerland-Workshop/agenda.php.

Special thanks to Hussein Harake for all his effort and dedication!

Our next conference will be in June as part of ISC’13.

HPCAC_Swiss_2013

Regards,

Gilad

Announcing the HPC Advisory Council China Workshop 2011

The HPC Advisory Council will hold the 2011 China Workshop on October 25th, 2011, in conjunction with the HPC China conference in Jinan, China. The workshop will focus on HPC productivity, and advanced HPC topics and futures, and will bring together system managers, researchers, developers, computational scientists and industry affiliates to discuss recent developments and future advancements in High-Performance Computing.

Last year more than 300 attendees participated in the Advisory Council China Workshop 2010. This year we expect to reach 400 attendees. The preliminary agenda is now posted on the workshop web, as well as call for speakers and for sponsors. AMD, Dell, Mellanox and Microsoft already confirmed their sponsorship and we are grateful for that.

The workshop keynotes presenters are Richard Graham (Distinguished Member of the Research Staff, Computer Science and Mathematics Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, USA), Professor Dhabaleswar K. Panda (Ohio State University, USA) and Professor Rafael Mayo-Gual (University Jaume I, Spain). The workshop will feature many interesting topics and distinguished speakers. More info can be found on the workshop web – http://hpcadvisorycouncil.com/events/2011/china_workshop/index.php.

Regards,

Gilad

HPC Advisory Council ISCnet FDR InfiniBand 56Gb/s World First Demonstration

The HPC Advisory Council, together with ISC, showcased the world’s first FDR 56Gb/s InfiniBand during the ISC’11 conference in Hamburg, Germany on June 20-22. The demonstration was part of the HPC Advisory Council activities of hosting and organizing new technology demonstrations at leading HPC conferences that demonstrate new solutions which will influence future HPC systems in term of performance, scalability and utilization. The 56Gb/s InfiniBand demonstration connected participating exhibitors on the ISC’11 showroom floor as part of the HPC Advisory Council ISCnet network. The ISCnet network provided organizations with fast interconnect connectivity between their booths on the show floor to demonstrate various HPC applications, and new developments and products.

The FDR InfiniBand network included dedicated and distributed clusters as well as a Lustre-based storage system. Multiple applications were demonstrated, including high-speed visualizations. The following HPC Council member organizations have contributed and are participated in the world’s first FDR 56Gb/s InfiniBand ISCnet demonstration: AMD, Corning Cable Systems, Dell, Fujitsu, HP, HPC Advisory Council, MEGWARE, Mellanox Technologies, Microsoft, OFS, Scalable Graphics, Supermicro and Xyratex.

I would like to thank all of the demo participants and you can see the network map below.

Regards,

Gilad

ISCnet