This Week in Viz – 7/24/2009

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Randall Hand from, the web’s best site dedicated to computer graphics and scientific visualization, recap’s the week‘s best stories related to supercomputing in the visualization and graphics industries.  This week he talks about SIGGRAPH, ParaView 3.6, and Render Farms.

Quick Picks:

Autodesk to host ‘Virtual SIGGRAPH’

Autodesk has big plans for this SIGGRAPH, and it’s not just big announcements.  They’re offering several Tech Talks and presentations, and (most impressively) the first “Virtual SIGGRAPH”.

Autodesk will be pumping at SIGGRAPH 2009 with several events such as Tech Talks and presentations on approaching film and game projects ‘9′ and ‘Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning’. They will also offer the first full Virtual SIGGRAPH. This is an online event that has free MasterClasses, live video streaming from the Autodesk booth presentations (#2201) and others attractions as well. Hewlett Packard and Intel are assisting, as well as NVIDIA, Fusion I/O and Wacom, so it’s sure to be huge.

Sounds like they’ll have reps from every major studio and company you can think of there, mentioned in the article are Microsoft, Digital Domain, EA, ILM, and more, so it’s sure to be a hot-spot at the conference.

Jon Peddie Research Luncheon at SIGGRAPH

Jon Peddie Research will be attending SIGGRAPH and hosting a luncheon for press and analysts about how changes in graphics hardware and software is effecting the scientific research community.

In the old days (just a few years ago and still today) researchers – in scientific (think molecular studies like protein), entertainment (think amazing movies or games), or industrial (think FEA) would launch or commission a horrendous calculation run that could take from weeks to years depending upon resources and research. When the results came back they would then send the file(s) to the visualizer. Then when the renders were done the researchers would complain and tell the visualizer to do them over and make them look like this…

If you can’t make it, don’t worry.  VizWorld will have staff attending the event, with a full write-up posted afterwards.

NCGR Visualizes the Human Genome

In an effort to locate a genetic basis for schizophrenia, the National Center for Genome Resources (NCGR) in Santa Fe, New MExico established the Schizophrenia Genome Project.  Taking genetic data from 14 patients and 6 controls, they found themselves searching for 11,500 candidate genes amongst 16.7 billion bases.  How to find them?  Statistical analysis and visualization.

NCGR analysts used principal components analysis and hierarchical clustering to assess the data. The variance attributable to disease status was higher for the Illumina digital expression data than from conventional array analysis. “Visualization tools, such as Principal Component Analysis, readily separated the cases and controls, we spotted differences right away,” says Schilkey.

Human Vision & Electronic Imaging Conference

I just found this gem of a conference announcement buried in the Forums, accidentally marked as Spam.  I’ve resurrected it for you all to view, the announcement of the SPIE and IS&T’s International Conference on Human Vision and Electronic Imaging in San Jose this January.  Of interest:

This year, there will be a special session on Visualization and cognition in the interactive exploration of massive data sets. Papers will be welcome in these and related areas:

* Visual Data Mining
* Visual semantics
* Visual identification and encoding of features
* Perceptual comparisons of different visualization methods
* Finding patterns across different data types (e.g., image, video, text, GIS)
* Directing visual attention
* Perceptually-based visualization design patterns

Abstracts are due this Friday (July 24th), and the entire conference committee list can be seen in the forum post.

Louisiana Tech getting a $2.85 Million Cyber-grant

Louisiana Tech University has just won a U.S. Air Force’s Office of Scientific Research grant for $2.85 Million, to be used to establish the Cyberspace Research Laboratory.

The Cyberspace Research Lab will support advanced research and development functions such as virtualization, visualization, high performance computing, wireless sensor networks and micro unmanned aerial vehicles. These facilities will allow researchers to configure different environments, simulate and test real-life events where security breaches may occur, and develop remedies against such security attacks.

Tapping into the new threat of cyber-terrorism:

“Tech has an important role to play in cyberspace R&D,” said Les Guice, vice president for research and development at Louisiana Tech. “As evidenced by recent attacks government computers, cyber threats are more and more prolific, demonstrating a critical need for further R&D. We intend to play a major role in addressing these needs.”

It’s a good win for Louisiana Tech, and combined with the existing high-speed LONI network it will be one of the top cyberspace research labs in the nation.