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SC09 reflections from Dan Reed

In addition to SC09 reflections from our own John Leidel, Dan Reed has posted his own reflections on the conference. As always, his thoughts are worth a read. He does make a comment that I found surprising

As always, a new Top500 list was revealed, and exascale computing was (literally) a hot topic, as multiple groups discussed the energy and reliability challenges inherent in building exascale systems. Jack Dongarra and collaborators summarized the results of the International Exascale Software Project (IESP), including a putative roadmap produced following the most recent workshop. A group of national laboratories and universities also announced the Hybrid Multicore Consortium (HMC), whose goal is to “address the migration of existing applications to accelerator-based systems and thereby maximize the investments in these systems.”

I commented in my own writeup — which I’ll post soon — that I actually hadn’t heard much talk about exascale. This is probably solely due to the different paths Dr. Reed and I took during the conference. I spent all my time on the exhibits floor and meeting with HPC ecosystem companies, and I suspect he spent a good bit of time in the tech program sessions. I believe that next year I’ll reverse my outward orbit from the tech program and devote my time attending (and live blogging) the tech sessions.

Also, Dan gives us a peek behind the curtain at the conference

Dona Crawford (LLNL), Wilf Pinfold (Intel and SC09 conference chair) and I recruited the panel of plenary and keynote speakers: Justin Rattner (Intel CTO), Lee Hood (Institute for Systems Biology) and former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, who gave the conference keynote. (Dona deserves full credit for landing al Gore, as she worked tirelessly to negotiate terms, processes and topics.)

I’ll say again that I think the choice of Al Gore was brilliant. I guess I should have shouldered my way up to Dona too when I thanked Wilf. Sorry for the ommision, Dona.

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  1. [...] term: the 2020 exascale challenge was an undercurrent, but not an overarching theme. Dan Reed had a different experience, probably because he actually spent time in the tech program (a scheduling choice I intend not to [...]

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