Filed Under (DSCR) by Tom Milledge on 20-02-2014

Update 11:28 A.M. 2/25/2014

Most DSCR functions related to the recent outage have been restored. The dscr-login-01 and dscr-login-02 node are online and all except 33 compute nodes are accepting jobs. Additional details are here:




Filed Under (Visualization) by Mark Delong, Ph.D. on 16-01-2014

Calling all Duke students:

There are just a few days left to put together a submission for the 2014 Student Data Visualization Contest. If you’ve created a chart, a graph, a map, or some other creative visual representation of data – for a class, a research project, or just for fun – you could be a few quick steps away from winning an Amazon gift card for $250.

Head over to http://bit.ly/viscontest14 for submission guidelines and examples from last year’s contest. Deadline is 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, January 19.

All Duke students from all undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs are welcome to submit! Please circulate widely, and feel free to contact angela.zoss@duke.edu with any questions.



Angela Zoss
Data Visualization Coordinator
Data & GIS Services
Duke University Libraries
twitter: duke_vis

Some fresh opportunities:

Blue Waters Student Internship Program Now Accepting Applicants

Blue Waters Student Internship Program is actively seeking faculty and students to participate in year-long student internship opportunities. Students in the program will gain experiences involving the application of high-performance computing to problems in science, mathematics or engineering.  The program provides a student stipend for undergraduate participants totaling $5000, and a two-week intensive Petascale Institute in 2014 along with travel to the Blue Waters Symposium 2015 for both undergraduate and graduate students.

This program provides support for internship activities at any accredited degree granting institution in the United States. Faculty who would like to mentor an undergraduate student can post descriptions of available positions. Positions can be intended for a particular applicant or opened to all qualified applicants. Undergraduate students should submit an application for consideration.

Internship positions and applications can be submitted at: computationalscience.org/pep/applications

Graduate students are welcome to apply to attend the Petascale Institute. They are responsible for arranging their own research advisor; any stipend would be the responsibility of the research advisor. Applications can be submitted at: computationalscience.org/pep/applications.

Blue Waters, supported by NSF and the University of Illinois, is one of the world’s most powerful supercomputers and the fastest on a university campus. Up to 1 percent of the computing capacity of Blue Waters is available for educational efforts aimed at preparing the next generation of students and teachers and an educated workforce.  The goal of the Blue Waters Student Internship Program and of the education allocation is to provide unique learning experiences for undergraduate and graduate students across a wide array of traditional and emerging disciplines.  In collaboration with Blue Waters, Shodor and the National Computational Science Institute will provide support and content for the internship program and Petascale Institute.  Shodor, a national resource for computational science education, is located in Durham, NC, and serves students and educators nationwide.

For More Information: bluewaters.ncsa.illinois.edu/internships or shodor.org/petascale/participation/internships


Applications now being accepted for Blue Waters Graduate Fellowships

The Blue Waters Graduate Fellowship Program is a new and unique program funded by the National Science Foundation. This prestigious program will select graduate students from across the country to immerse themselves in a year of focused high-performance computing (HPC) research. The fellowships will empower these talented graduate students to advance their HPC knowledge while also providing them with time and support to accelerate their research.

The fellowship is designed to support PhD students who are engaged in a program of study and research that is directly relevant to the use of the Blue Waters supercomputer. Preference will be given to candidates engaged in a multidisciplinary research project that combines disciplines such as computer science, applied mathematics and computational science applications.

Fellowship recipients will receive a stipend of $38,000 for the one year of the fellowship. They will also receive up to a $12,000 tuition allowance. During the fellowship year, the fellow’s academic institution is asked to exempt the recipient of any other tuition and fee charges normally charged to students of comparable academic standing.  Recipients will receive travel funds to attend a Blue Waters symposium and may also receive funding to present a paper at another scientific meeting. The fellowship provides up to 100,000 node-hours on the Blue Waters system to support the fellow’s research.

Blue Waters is a truly extraordinary supercomputer, designed to handle the most compute-intensive, memory-intensive, and data-intensive challenges in computational science and engineering. Blue Waters features:

  • Nearly 27,000 very high-performance computational nodes including more than 4,000 GPUs
  • More than 1.66 petabytes of memory
  • More than 25 usable petabytes of online disk storage
  • Up to 500 petabytes of near-line tape storage.
For complete details of the Blue Waters system, visit https://bluewaters.ncsa.illinois.edu/hardware-summary.

 Researchers across the country are using Blue Waters to gain new understanding of how viruses attack our bodies, the formation of galaxies and of severe storms, space weather, sub-atomic physics and other challenging topics.

For the fellowships, preference will be given to candidates engaged in a multidisciplinary research project that combines disciplines such as computer science, applied mathematics, and computational science applications. Applications will be evaluated based on:

  • Academic record
  • Research plan and its relationship to use of the Blue Waters supercomputer
  • GRE score
  • Related experience and service
  • Letters of reference

Applications, including all supporting materials, must be submitted no later than 9 pm EST on Feb. 3, 2014. Awards will be made in spring 2014, with the tuition allowance applied to the 2014-2015 academic year.

For complete information on the fellowships, visit https://bluewaters.ncsa.illinois.edu/fellowships. Questions? Contact bwgf@ncsa.illinois.edu.


The International Conference on Computational Science (ICCS 2014) and the workshop The Workshop on Teaching Computational Science, which will be June 10-12 in Cairns, Australia, have extended the paper submission deadlines to January 15, 2014.  Moreover, there are now three submission options: full paper, poster presentation with a short paper, and oral presentation without a paper (abstract only).  Please let us know if you have any questions.

Hope to see you at ICCS,

Co-Chairs of “The Workshop on Teaching Computational Science”:

Angela B. Shiflet, Ph. D. (shifletab@wofford.edu), Wofford College, USA

Valerie Maxville, Ph. D. (mailto:maxville@ivec.org), iVEC, Australia

Alfredo Tirado-Ramos, Ph. D. (mailto:TiradoRamos@uthscsa.edu), U. of Texas Health Science Center, USA


Filed Under (DSCR, Maintenance) by John Pormann, Ph.D. on 24-09-2013

The DSCR Maintenance window is now finished; the DSCR is back to normal operation

The DSCR is now under it’s previously-scheduled maintenance window.  We expect to update almost every cluster component — storage, network, compute-servers — so it may take until Thursday before the system is ready.  We’ll make another announcement as soon as it is available.

Filed Under (DSCR, Maintenance) by John Pormann, Ph.D. on 10-09-2013

**** DSCR Maintenance

**** Tuesday, September 24th/8am to Thursday, September 26th/5pm

**** Full Cluster Outage — All jobs will be removed

We need to perform our regular quarterly maintenance on the DSCR as well as some firmware updates to the file servers, core switch, and many of the Dell chassis.  We also need to have new power-drops brought to older racks so that we can convert then from the older style 1U servers to the newer Dell blades.  Given the amount of work to do, we are aiming for a full outage covering three days.

All jobs on the DSCR will be killed on Tuesday morning so that we can power down equipment and perform the needed updates.

We will also disable all of the queues on Monday night (September 23rd, 5pm) — this will prevent your jobs from starting and then being killed on Tuesday morning.  Since all running jobs will be terminated, users should be careful not to launch long-running jobs just before the outage is scheduled to start — i.e. if your job will take several days to run, please launch it well in advance of Tuesday’s downtime.

For more information, see:


If you have any questions, please contact scsc at duke.edu .

Filed Under (Computational Science, Grants, Training) by John Pormann, Ph.D. on 10-09-2013

From our friends at Shodor.org:

IEEE Cluster 2013

September 23-27, 2013

Indianapolis, IN

Student Program

Thanks to the generosity of the National Science Foundation and our Bronze and Silver sponsors we are now able to offer registration and travel scholarships.  See the website for details.  Application deadline is September 13 but we will be making decisions on awards as the applications come in so students may make travel arrangements as soon as possible – this makes it somewhat of a first-come first-served application process.  http://pti.iu.edu/ieeecluster-2013/student.php  If you are interested in mentoring a student please let me know right away.


Workshops and Tutorials

If you haven’t already done so, consider attending the Monday tutorials or Friday workshops.


http://pti.iu.edu/ieeecluster-2013/workshops.php (some are still accepting papers, see each workshop URL for more information)


Conference Program on SCHED

SCHED allows you to login, create a custom schedule of what you’re interested in attending, print your own guide or schedule, have a profile in the attendee directory and more.  Create your free login and start using SCHED to plan your conference experience.




Filed Under (Maintenance) by John Pormann, Ph.D. on 08-08-2013

DSCR Maintenance – Friday, August 9th, 8-9am

We need to implement some new controls on the DSCR’s core switch and we’re targeting tomorrow (Fri) morning, between 8-9am.

There should be no significant impact to DSCR users.  The login machines, compute nodes, and queuing system should all continue to work.  The main impact should be to dscr-xfer-01, which will be unavailable for a few minutes while the new configuration is loaded.

If your computational jobs rely on external connections (i.e. wget or sftp’ing files from a remote server), they may see some impact.  Hopefully, any file transfer will simply be delayed while the upgrade takes place.  If you see any connection failures, please let us know.

Sorry for the late notice on this, but we feel this config change will provide better stabilty to the network.


Filed Under (Computational Science, Training) by John Pormann, Ph.D. on 06-08-2013

Patrick Royal (OIT Student Technology Trainer) became a lynda.com author in spring 2013!  During the spring semester, he wrote a series of scripts about MATLAB, and then at the start of the summer he flew to the lynda campus in Carpinteria, CA to record the videos.  The final product was uploaded in July as ‘Up and Running with MATLAB‘. This tutorial, along with all of the other 104,000+ videos available through the lynda.com online training library. Duke faculty, students and staff can go here to connect: training.oit.duke.edu/lynda.  Patrick is now working on a new tutorial based on Java EE, slated to be released near the beginning of next year.

(cross-posted from OIT Connections, Cara Bonnett)

Filed Under (Grants, Training) by John Pormann, Ph.D. on 06-08-2013

SIGHPC is offering two travel grant opportunities for students (undergraduate or early career graduate student) to attend the Supercomputing/SC13 Conference in Denver. Each opportunity supports up to 3 grants.  Each awarded student will be reimbursed for up to US$600 for travel within North America – or US$1200 if travel originates outside of North America.

Students awarded a travel grant under either program will be assigned a mentor to help them navigate the conference. Please refer to additional details on the SIGHPC web page, http://www.sighpc.org/resources/travel.

The deadline for ACM-W grants is August 15; the deadline for SIGHPC grants is September 15.  Send any questions to students@sighpc.org.

Filed Under (Computational Science, Training) by John Pormann, Ph.D. on 06-08-2013

Grid Computing @ Duke

Fall 2013 Campus Infrastructures Workshop

The workshop serves as a forum for the US Grid Computing Community to discuss technology that enables University campuses to set up a grid computing environment, access the Open Science Grid and provide their campus communities with access to significant computing resources.  It will also provide an introduction for the Duke community on how to utilize the Open Science Grid and grid computing resources on campus.

  • When:   August 27-28, 2013
  • Where:  R. David Thomas Executive Conference Center at Duke University
  • For Whom:  all members of the Duke community interested in learning how to utilize grid computing in their research
  • Cost:  NONE!  (participation is limited on a first-come first-served basis)
  • Registration:  https://indico.fnal.gov/conferenceDisplay.py?confId=6863

Sponsored by the Information Initiative @ Duke (iiD)