A collaboration of five Great Plains higher education institutions and non-profit organizations in Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Kansas recently received a $4 million Major Research Instrument (MRI) award from the National Science Foundation. This grant is entitled MRI: Acquisition of a High-Performance Computational System for OAK Region to Enable Computing and Data Driven Discovery. It was awarded August 3 and begins August 15, 2022. (Award Number 2216084.)
The grant was awarded to Oklahoma State University and funds a cutting-edge high-performance computing system for universities in Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Kansas (OAK). This system will be built using the latest CPUs, GPUs, 100 Terabytes of aggregate memory, an HDR InfiniBand interconnect, and Petabyte-scale high-speed storage. This system has several types of nodes (CPUs-only, mid-range GPUs, and high-end GPUs) and will provide 100 million-core hours of computing. In addition to NSF’s $4 million funding, Oklahoma State University will contribute $1.7 million to build the new supercomputer.
This grant will enhance the region’s access to high performance compute cycles and advance research in a wide range of areas such as biology, human and animal health, agriculture, environment research, chemistry and chemical engineering, semiconductor materials research, cybersecurity and social network modeling, renewable energy research, seismology, high-energy physics, and medical physics. When it is not being used by the region’s researchers, the supercomputer will contribute unused compute cycles to researchers nationwide through Open Science Grid (OSG) and Partnership to Advance Throughput (PATh) computing.
The grant is led by Dr. Pratul Agarwal from Oklahoma State University with support from James Deaton from Great Plains Network, Dr. Xiuzhen Huang from Arkansas State University, Dr. Janet Twomey from Wichita State University, Dr. William Hsu from Kansas State University, Dr. Jingyi Chen from The University of Tulsa, Dr. Christopher Fennell from Oklahoma State University and Evan Lemley from University of Central Oklahoma.
This MRI investment will broaden the reach of high-performance computing to minority serving institutions in these three states. Agarwal’s vision is to enable supercomputer access especially for small and new users. “We want to enable new discoveries. Smart ideas can come out of anywhere. We want to make sure that the barrier to entry to supercomputing is low, so that every researcher can benefit from it.”
This project is jointly funded by the Major Research Instrumentation (MRI) program, the Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR), and the NSF’s Computer & Information Science & Engineering (CISE) Directorate.
Dr. Pratul Agarwal, Assistant Vice President for Research (Cyber-Infrastructure), Oklahoma State University
From Trusted CI.
Trusted CI presents an introduction to software security course. Follow the link for videos and PDFs. https://research.cs.wisc.edu/mist/SoftwareSecurityCourse/
These include hands-on exercises and quizzes for many of the topics. Classroom exercises and the solutions to the hands-on exercises and quizzes are provided to instructors by request. Most of the videos now have captions in both English and Spanish.
These materials are being continuously updated, as Trusted CI develop new modules. The latest additions are modules on address space layout optimization (ASLR), memory safety checks, fuzz testing and using AFL, and dependency analysis tools.
GPN will host an online Software Carpentry git lesson on October 18 and October 25 from 11:00-12:30 Central both days. The lesson is taught over both days, the 25th is a continuation of the 18th. For those of you who attend the GPN RP calls, this replaces the meeting.
There is no registration for the workshops, simply join the zoom room. https://zoom.us/j/990703455
Target Audience: Anyone with beginner knowledge of Linux/UNIX shell.
Prepare for class: Before the class October 18, please install gitbash for MS WIndows and XCode for Mac. Instructions are on this page under “The Bash Shell” section: https://oulib-swc.github.io/CarpentrySetups/
Feel free to pass this along to anyone who can benefit from this lesson.
This week, I attended InCommon’s BaseCAMP. It’s a virtual event, like most events in recent memory. Virtual events have come a long way and the InCommon folks take advantage of Zoom and Remo to make their goal of “Learn. Share. Belong.” a reality. This was the most interactive online conference I’ve attended so far.
Here are some observations about why that was, in no particular order.
- Zoom was set to Meeting mode. Attendees could turn on their cameras and microphones when they wanted to.
- Presentations were live and speakers loved questions. Attendees asked questions in zoom chat. Either the speaker paused and asked if there were questions, or a monitor read questions at a natural pause.
- BaseCAMP ran Monday-Friday, 11-5 Central. The last optional hour and a half was on Remo (more about that below). BaseCAMP left time in the morning to do regular work.
- Sessions were 50 minutes. Between every session, there was a 10 minute break. The break was just enough time to get a drink and have a bio break, but not long enough to get started on other work that got interrupted once the next session started.
- During the breaks, they screen shared a duck race so people knew when to return. It also gave people something fun to watch and comment on. I don’t know what software they used, but costumed ducks swam as a timer counted down and one won at the end.
- Remo preserved the “hallway conversation” aspect of face-to-face conferences about as well as possible.
Remo is another conference product that is based on multiple rooms. Attendees see all of the rooms and who is in each room. BaseCAMP configured Remo to look like a series of campfires. Each campfire was numbered. When an attendee joined a campfire, they could speak with everyone there. This was a better format than zoom because zoom doesn’t show who is is what breakout room.