Category Archives: HPC

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:

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


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!


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 The presentations from the conference can be found on

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.


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

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

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




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 –



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.




HPC Advisory Council Forms Worldwide Centers of Excellence

This week we announced the formation of the HPC Advisory Council Centers of Excellence. The HPC Advisory Council Centers of Excellence will provide local support for the HPC Advisory Council’s programs, local workshops and conferences, as well as host local computing centers that can be used to extend such activities.

“We are pleased to be named as one the inaugural HPC Advisory Council’s Centers of Excellence, covering HPC research, outreach and educational activities within Europe,” said Hussein Nasser El-Harake at the Swiss National Supercomputing Centre who serves as the Director of the HPC Advisory Council Center of Excellence in Switzerland. “As part of the HPC Advisory Council’s Center of Excellence, we look forward to advancing awareness of the beneficial capabilities of HPC to new users.”


HPC|GPU special interest subgroup releasing first results for NVIDIA GPUDirect Technology

The new HPC|GPU subgroup has been working recently to create first best practices around the new technology from NVIDIA – GPUDirect. Here is some background on GPUDirect: the system architecture of a GPU-CPU server requires the CPU to initiate and manage memory transfers between the GPU and the network. The new GPUDirect technology enables Tesla and Fermi GPUs to transfer data to pinned system memory that a RDMA capable network is able to read and send without the involvement of the CPU in the data path. The result is an increase in overall system performance and efficiency by reducing the GPU to GPU communication latency (by 30% as was published by some vendors). The HPC|GPU subgroup is first to release benchmarks results of application using GPUDirect. The application that was chosen for the testing was Amber, a molecular dynamics software package. Testing with 8 nodes cluster demonstrated up to 33% performance increase using GPUDirect. If you want to read more – check out the HPC|GPU page –