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A Computer for the Clouds

August 1, 2008

PHOTO: Darryl Torckler/Getty Images Complexity However pleasing to the eye, clouds are a computational headache because their numerous features can either accelerate or retard warming. These altocumulus clouds form in midatmosphere, at 2000 to 6000 meters. In May an IBM-built supercomputer called Roadrunner crunched through a quadrillion floating-point operations per second, officially becoming the first supercomputer to break the petaflop barrier. But unofficially, that barrier had fallen… Read More »


Technology for Speeding Up Searches of Large Databases Wins R&D 100 Award

August 1, 2008

FastBit, an indexing technology that allows users to search massive datasets up to 40 times faster than the best commercially available tools, has been recognized with a 2008 R&D 100 Award. R&D Magazine will present the award to FastBit developers Kesheng “John” Wu, Arie Shoshani, Ekow Otoo, and Kurt Stockinger of the Scientific Data Management Group in Berkeley Lab’s Computational Research Division, at a special October ceremony in Chicago, Ill. (Stockinger has since… Read More »


Juan Meza Wins 2008 Blackwell-Tapia Prize and SACNAS Distinguished Scientist Award

July 11, 2008

Dr. Juan C. Meza, Department Head and Senior Scientist for the High Performance Computing Research Department in the Computational Research Division at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, has been named recipient of two awards: the Blackwell-Tapia Prize and the SACNAS Distinguished Scientist Award. Read More »


FastBit Bitmap Index Wins 2008 R&D 100 Award for Technology Advances

July 9, 2008

Four researchers in the Scientific Data Management (SDM) Group in Berkeley Lab's Computational Research Division (CRD) will be awarded one of the 2008 R&D 100 Awards for developing the FastBit indexing technology. The award, given by R&D Magazine to the 100 top new technologies of the year, will go to Kesheng “John” Wu, the key developer; Arie Shoshani, SDM Group Lead; Ekow Otoo; and former SDM member Kurt Stockinger, now working at Credit Suisse in Zürich, Switzerland. Read More »


North America Faces More Extreme Weather from Global Warming

June 19, 2008

The U.S. Climate Change Science Program and the Subcommittee on Global Change Research today released a scientific assessment that provides the first comprehensive analysis of observed and projected changes in weather and climate extremes in North America and U.S. territories. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change previously evaluated extreme weather and climate events on a global basis in this same context. However, there has not been a specific assessment across North America prior to this report. Read More »

High Performance Humanities

May 8, 2008

On April 21, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) announced something new: they would be teaming up with the U.S. Department of Energy to offer one million CPU hours on supercomputers at NERSC for use by researchers in the humanities. The effort is managed out of the NEH's new Office of Digital Humanities, created recently to recognize the increasing importance of computing in what has traditionally been a very old-fashioned area of research.... Read the whole article Read More »

Living the Vision: A Profile of Kathy Yelick

May 8, 2008

The February / March 2008 issue of the European magazine Scientific Computing World features a profile of NERSC Division Director Kathy Yelick titled "Living the Vision." Read More »


Berkeley Lab Researchers Propose a New Breed of Supercomputers for Improving Global Climate Predictions

May 5, 2008

BERKELEY, Calif. — Three researchers from the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have proposed an innovative way to improve global climate change predictions by using a supercomputer with low-power embedded microprocessors, an approach that would overcome limitations posed by today’s conventional supercomputers. Read More »

ESnet's Bill Johnston, Nearing Retirement, Reflects on His Career

April 11, 2008

In a few months, Bill Johnston of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory will step down as head of ESnet, the Department of Energy's international network that provides high bandwidth networking to tens of thousands of researchers around the world. In a career that began in the 1970s and has included seminal work in networking, distributed computing, the Grid, and even crossing paths with Al Gore, Johnston has had a hand in the development of many of the high performance computing and networking resources that are today taken for granted. And as he tells it, it all began with the brain of Berkeley Lab scientist Tom Budinger. Read More »

The Greening of High Performance Computing

April 10, 2008

Will power consumption become the limiting factor for future growth in high performance computing (HPC)? Berkeley Lab's Associate Laboratory Director for Computing Sciences, Horst Simon, addressed this topic in the Distinguished Lecture Series in Petascale Simulation at the University of Texas at Austin’s Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences and the Texas Advanced Computing Center on April 10, 2008. Read More »