28
Jun
2016

Given its expeditionary namesake, it's only appropriate that Beagle -- the University of Chicago's supercomputer for biomedical research -- works with data from all around the world. But a recent project may qualify as the farthest-traveling data yet, as the HPC resource was used in a new genomic study of populations living in the Himalayan mountain range. 

21
Jun
2016

The traditional science research article doesn’t perform many tricks. When journals made the leap from paper to web, they largely settled on the static format of the PDF, a format that offers easy printing and little else. In the meantime, research across the spectrum of science has grown more data-intensive and computational, and programmers have developed exciting new ways to document, publish, share, and collaborate on projects. The ingredients are all there for a new kind of living, dynamic scientific publication.

26
May
2016

People at the University of Chicago study climate and energy from a variety of perspectives, including geophysics, computer modeling, law, economics, and molecular engineering. Yet the most immediate way to make a difference on climate change and sustainable energy is to look at our own campus, one of the largest consumers of energy in Chicago. Useful new solutions to reduce energy usage and cut cost could then be expanded to other universities and similar workplaces, a bottom-up contribution to complement larger-scale research.

18
May
2016

Cyberinfrastructure is the connective tissue for computational science, tying together the research projects, resources, software, data, networks, and people needed to make important discoveries. In an era where soon all research will be computational science, to varying degrees, the importance of building strong cyberinfrastructures to support that research grows -- as do the challenges. But what will the cyberinfrastructures of the future look like?

13
May
2016

Using data to better understand and improve cities is no longer a revolutionary new idea. Cities across the world now release data publicly and use data internally to drive better services, social scientists increasingly use “big” data and computation to study urban environments, and civic hacking groups create data-driven websites and apps to inform and benefit communities. But in many ways, these are just the low-hanging fruit of urban data science, which remains a young field with more promise than results.

09
May
2016

It's been almost a year since Chameleon, the experimental cloud computing testbed co-run by the Computation Institute and Texas Advanced Computing Center, went into full production for research use. Already, 600 users and 150 projects have used the system to test new uses and technologies for cloud computing, from finding unknown exoplanets to preventing cyberattacks. Last week, HPCwire spoke to CI Senior Fellow Kate Keahey and other members of the Chameleon team, surveying its early successes and previewing the innovations still to come.

06
May
2016

Inside the small wooden box are several tiny sensors, a cellular modem, a battery, and a micro-processor running custom programming code. But the key innovation for Erica Pereira’s “Lane of Things” device might be the laser-printed cut-out design of the outer enclosure: two circles and a square forming a friendly emoji-like face.

27
Apr
2016

Software helps people harness the power of computing for the task of their choice, be it analyzing a genome or streaming a movie. But platforms provide the next level of computational potential, enabling easy access to software for users and a strong foundation for developers to build upon and distribute their work. A good platform example is iOS, the operating system for mobile Apple devices, which through its app store and programming language allows worldwide distribution of software, near instantly, at low cost.

20
Apr
2016

In recent years, city and local governments have increasingly used data to discover innovative new ways to improve their operations and serve their citizens. But the spread of these solutions between and within cities has been limited by obstacles including lack of replicability, resources, and technical expertise.

18
Apr
2016

As climate change drives higher temperatures and more frequent droughts around the world, many predict severe threats to agriculture and food security. But a new study aggregating several climate and crop models suggests that  the primary driver of climate change, rising levels of carbon dioxide, may also prove beneficial to crops, mitigating a portion of the damage.