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InTheLoop | 06.18.2007

The weekly newsletter for Berkeley Lab Computing Sciences

June 18, 2007

CRD’s Juan Meza Gives Career-Launching Tips to 250 Students

Juan Meza, head of the CRD High Performance Computing Research Department, shared his insights into getting a research position with 250 students in an invited talk presented by the Rice-Houston AGEP (Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professsoriate). The Rice-Houston AGEP unites many of the city’s research and teaching universities and community colleges in the common mission of significantly increasing the number of underrepresented minority students earning the Ph.D. and positioning them to become leaders in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields. Meza, who earned his Ph.D. and master’s degrees in computational mathematics from Rice, has given a similar talk several times, and the audience grows dramatically each time. This time, close to 250 students from Rice, the University of Houston and Texas State University attended. In “Research Job Interviews: The Unwritten Rules,” Meza combines practical advice and humor, such as reminding students to “READ you’re CV double check spelling and grammer” and during dinner conversations to avoid hot-button issues such as politics, religion and American Idol. Because the crowd was so large and engaged, Meza admits he had trouble following his top piece of advice — your talk MUST end on time. Even so, the questions and discussion continued for another hour. Meza’s presentation is posted at http://hpcrd.lbl.gov/~meza/presentations.html.

Harvard’s Initiative in Innovative Computing Invites David Skinner to Speak

David Skinner, leader of DOE’s SciDAC Outreach Center and head of NERSC Open Software and Programming Group, will give an invited talk for Harvard’s Initiative in Innovative Computing (IIC) on June 27. IIC is an interdisciplinary research and development center at Harvard, dedicated to using innovative computing tools to accelerate discovery across all of the scientific disciplines. As head of the SciDAC Outreach Center, Skinner is working to increase awareness of DOE’s computing resources — both hardware and software — among the U.S. research community. Skinner’s talk is entitled “Scientific Discovery through Advanced Computing: Resources for Science-Driven Computation” and will look at how SciDAC is advancing computational science. Skinner is giving the talk in conjunction with the 2007 SciDAC Conference, which is being held June 24-28 in Boston. Alyssa Goodman, director of IIC, is attending the SciDAC 2007 meeting.

Twenty-Seven Students Join Computing Sciences, IT Division for the Summer

Horst Simon, Associate Director for Computing Sciences, will kick off the summer student program today with a luncheon and tech talk. The program has 27 high school and college students, who are here through various programs. They will be working with staff scientists on research projects in areas such as biomedical imaging, networking and high-energy physics. The four DOE Computational Science Graduate Fellows are Julianne Chung, Peter Norgaard, Michael Sekora and Benjamin Smith. The DHS Fellow is Dong Ryeol Lee.

Many other college and high school students are here as part of the programs run by the Berkeley Lab's Center for Science and Engineering Education. The college students are Matt Doiron, Matthew Smith and Zachariah Tanko. The high school students are Dimitry Kisliyuk, Aaron Marshall and Michael Marshall.

Four international students are coming from ETH Zurich: Mauro Calderara, Jonathan Coles, Fracois Goignat and Denis Nordmann. The rest of the college students who are here for the summer are Elena Caraba, Jonathan Chu, Oliver Dario, Annabelle Carter, Chrisopher Creighton, Cobber Lam, Daniel Schreiber, Louise Kutten, Andrew Rodriguez, Sahak Margosian, Karen McVey and Pietro Cicotti.

During the luncheon today, Simon will talk about the impact of supercomputers and the role of computational science on advancing research. He also will point out the limitations posed by supercomputers to solve certain problems.

LBNL Hosts Eighth Workshop on ACTS Collection of Software Tools

The Eighth DOE Advanced CompuTational Software (ACTS) Collection Workshop will be held on August 21-24 at Berkeley Lab. The application submission deadline is Friday, June 22. The workshop provides hands-on instruction in building robust scientific and engineering high-end computing applications. The ACTS Collection comprises a set of tools mainly developed at DOE laboratories and proven in many applications and fields in computational sciences. These software tools aim to simplify the solution of common and important computational problems and have substantially benefited a wide range of scientific and industrial applications. Not only have the ACTS tools been used to help applications run more efficiently in high performance computing environments, but they have also helped users achieve computations that would not have been possible otherwise. For more information about the scope of the workshop please see http://acts.nersc.gov/events/Workshop2007.

Secrets Revealed: 10-Year Searchable Archive of Loops

A CRD group lead recently wrote to say it would be handy to have an archive of InTheLoops. In fact, a searchable archive of Loops dating back to the first issue of May 5, 1997 can be found at http://www.lbl.gov/CS/staff/loop.html. And the editors are proud to note that they haven’t missed an issue in all that time (but they have taken a couple of weeks off over the December shutdowns).

About Computing Sciences at Berkeley Lab

The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) Computing Sciences organization provides the computing and networking resources and expertise critical to advancing the Department of Energy's research missions: developing new energy sources, improving energy efficiency, developing new materials and increasing our understanding of ourselves, our world and our universe.

ESnet, the Energy Sciences Network, provides the high-bandwidth, reliable connections that link scientists at 40 DOE research sites to each other and to experimental facilities and supercomputing centers around the country. The National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) powers the discoveries of 6,000 scientists at national laboratories and universities, including those at Berkeley Lab's Computational Research Division (CRD). CRD conducts research and development in mathematical modeling and simulation, algorithm design, data storage, management and analysis, computer system architecture and high-performance software implementation. NERSC and ESnet are DOE Office of Science User Facilities.

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory addresses the world's most urgent scientific challenges by advancing sustainable energy, protecting human health, creating new materials, and revealing the origin and fate of the universe. Founded in 1931, Berkeley Lab's scientific expertise has been recognized with 13 Nobel prizes. The University of California manages Berkeley Lab for the DOE’s Office of Science.

DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit science.energy.gov.