Past Meetup

MIT Lecture: Expanding Computing Power to Support Research Needs

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I will be in the food court near the Marriott/Kendall Square T stop. from 5:30 to 6:30, so feel free to drop by and grab a quick bite to eat before the lecture. I will have a meetup badge and a meetup sign. At 6:30 the group will head over to the Tang Center for the lecture. We are going to want to head in for seats at 6:45. If you don't want to go to the food court before hand, meet us in the Lobby of the Tang Center. If there is an interest, after the lecture we can go over to Characters in the Marriott for drinks.

Lecture Time: 7:00p–9:00p

Location: The Tang Center, Building E51-345, 70 Memorial Drive, Kendall Square, Cambridge MA.

Campus Map: (

The best way to get there is to take the T to Kendall Square and walk. Should only take about 5 minutes to get to the Tang Center from the T.

If you are going to drive there is pay parking at the Marriott garage. (,+MA&cid=0,0,11909199291878970979&ei=y2f2TJ7YGMT68Abn5cH4Bg&sa=X&oi=local_result&ct=image&resnum=2&ved=0CCwQnwIwAQ)

There is also free parking but it is further away from the building where the lecture is being held, so plan your time accordingly.

Free parking is available in the West Annex Lot (on Vassar Street west of Massachusetts Avenue, next to the West Garage), or on the street. The lot behind the Bank of America ATM at Mass Ave and Vassar Street is closer, but it often fills up on weeknights. No parking permit is required at these lots after 5 pm or on weekends. Metered street parking is free after 6 pm.

Lecture Details:

Expanding Computing Power to Support Research Needs while being environmentally sensitive and energy efficient
Speaker: James Cuff

IEEE/ACM Joint Seminar Series
Exploring the edge of computing technology.

In the past 4.5 years, Harvard University's research computing resources have grown from 200 to over 12,000 processing cores, putting significant strain on data center resources and the wide area networking infrastructure available on the Cambridge campus. I will discuss the tactics for building both the organizational and physical infrastructure which now supports over 2,000 researchers in fields as diverse as astrophysical modeling of the early universe, high speed genomic sequencing whose data output more than doubles each year, the search for the Higgs boson and advanced economic and financial modeling. This research involves large amounts of data and algorithms which may not scale well. (Some of the algorithms are NP complete.) Economies can be achieved by sharing a physical infrastructure operated by a team of research computing associates and staff. In this context the research computing group have deployed approx 2PB of storage and 40TF of GPGPU computing to support and complement traditional 12,000 core x86_64 infiniband connected systems. I will also explain the now obvious need for Harvard's active involvement in the new multi institutional Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center.

James Cuff is Director of Research Computing and Chief Technology Architect at Harvard. He was appointed Director of Research Computing for the Faculty of Arts and Sciences in 2007, previously directing Research Computing for the Life Sciences Division.

Web site: (

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