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NCSA Industry Newsletter
Vol. 3, No. 1
Director's Note

Like you, we have all been adjusting to working remotely, looking at our screens more than ever thanks to Zoom/et al. meetings, and turning parts of our homes into temporary office spaces.

Still, as with you, the work continues for us. We have appreciated hearing from those of you who have reached out and we continue to stand ready to help address current and future challenges, now more than ever. In fact, as you will see below with our new hires, partners, and projects, we are as active as ever. We look forward to establishing our new normal and working together on game-changing solutions.

Thank you, always, for your continued support and partnerships. Be safe, and be well.

Best to you all,

Brendan McGinty

Director, NCSA Industry

Program Updates
New Hires:

We are excited to welcome Charlotte Cornwall and Holly Highland to our team as Project Managers. Charlotte has a computer engineering background and twenty-five years of Program and Project Management experience in the telecommunications, automotive and marketing industries. Holly will bring her financial acumen and experience with the XSEDE scientific computing project led by NCSA to our team this summer.

New Partners:

NCSA Industry is proud to partner with new collaborators Rgenta Therapeutics and Traverse Science.

Technical Updates

In early 2020, we deprecated the “normal” queue on iForge and expanded the “skylake” queue to forty-four nodes. 

This summer, our partners can expect OS and filesystem upgrades, as we move to Red Hat 7 and GPFS 5. In addition, we will be transitioning away from the current Moab Torque scheduling system to Slurm, a widely used open-source alternative. We look forward to the advantages these changes will bring to iForge, and will work closely with our partners to address questions and ensure everyone is prepared for these transitions.

NSF Awards NCSA $10 Million for Deployment of Delta

The National Science Foundation's (NSF) Innovative High-Performance Computing program, has awarded $10 million to the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) to deploy and operate Delta, an advanced computing and data resource that will shape the future of technology and practice in advanced research computing. With the deployment of the Delta system, NCSA takes an active role in expanding the adoption of GPU-based computing and continues to be at the forefront of advanced research computing.

Read more here.

Support for COVID-19 Research

NCSA has been active in efforts to study, mitigate, and address COVID-19 and its impacts on health and society. NCSA has joined the C3.ai Digital Transformation Institute, and NCSA team members are collaborating with the C3.ai team to prepare and strengthen tools, interfaces, and training for incoming researchers. In addition, our teams have submitted proposals to the Institute to create new tools and methods for prediction and monitoring of COVID-19. 

Through the University of Illinois, NCSA is also a member institution of the High Performance Computing Consortium, which provides HPC resources to COVID-19 researchers. The Consortium continues to review proposals even as an initial round of projects are in full swing.

New Partnership with Compute Ontario

The National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and Compute Ontario (CO) are forming a new strategic partnership to promote advanced research computing (ARC) and its use, and achieving common goals.

Both organizations leverage the power of supercomputing and its resources to enable digital transformation, research and innovation to solve societal challenges. This partnership will focus on achieving goals of mutual strategic importance in critical areas such as the development of a highly-skilled technology workforce, collaboration on outreach to the broader ARC community, and information and expertise sharing, among others. 

Read more here.

NCSA Industry Conference

Our annual Industry Conference allows us to share updates and new directions, learn from our partners, and connect organizations and teams working with similar challenges and outlooks. While we were originally looking forward to seeing everyone in the Fall, we have decided to postpone our next gathering until October 2021 so that we can provide a valuable experience while protecting health and safety. We will continue to provide updates as we make decisions on when, where, and how the conference will proceed.

NCSA Centers

Our team provides expertise to two interdisciplinary centers: the Center for Digital Agriculture and the Center for Artificial Intelligence Innovation. Both centers bring together faculty, students, and businesses to develop, implement, and support synergistic solutions to exigent problems. The Center for AI Innovation focuses on transformative ways to produce and deploy artificial intelligence to address questions across industries, while the Center for Digital Agriculture applies new technology to create benefit for all agricultural efforts and sectors. 

Find out more here.

About NCSA Industry

The NCSA Industry Program combines a highly experienced technical team with state-of-the-art high performance digital resources to perform grand-scale consulting and help businesses gain a competitive edge. We have worked with many of the world's largest companies in sectors including manufacturing, oil and gas, finance, retail/wholesale, bio/medical, life sciences, agriculture, technology, and more.

Save the Date

Next quarterly iForge planned maintenance: August 11, 2020

Next NCSA Industry Conference: Tentatively planned for October 2021


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