Wednesday Keynote
HPC Achievement and Impact - 2013 


Wednesday, June 19, 5:15 pm - 6:00 pm, Hall 1

Prof. Dr. Thomas Sterling
Professor, School of Informatics & Computing and Chief Scientist & Associate Director, CREST, Indiana University

Each year for the last decade, the progress and accomplishments in HPC of the preceding twelve months have been examined and their implications considered even as the observed trends have anticipated future progress. But on this, the tenth anniversary of this perennial Keynote Address, an examination not of the previous year but rather of the last ten years will be presented. This historic opportunity will give a rare perspective with a sufficient base line that the true achievement of our field will be clearly revealed. Equally divided between the era of Teraflops and the current age of Petaflops systems, this time transitioned through a performance gain of between two and three orders of magnitude and growth in memory capacities of almost as much. But perhaps of greatest importance has been the impact on end disciplines in science, technology, and other application domains. This Keynote Address will examine the innovations in technology and the architectures that it has enabled as well as its contributions in the fundamental fields to which it has been applied. Also to be acknowledged are the trends throughout the international community over this period. Finally, can we imagine the next ten years? Probably not but presented will be the results of an informal collection of predictions by many of the leaders of this most extraordinary of human technological endeavors.


Dr. Thomas Sterling holds the position of Professor of Informatics and Computing at the Indiana University (IU) School of Informatics and Computing as well as serving as Chief Scientist and Associate Director of the PTI Center for Research in Extreme Scale Technologies (CREST). He also is an Adjunct Professor at the Louisiana State University (LSU) and CSRI Fellow at Sandia National Laboratories. Since receiving his Ph.D from MIT in 1984 as a Hertz Fellow Dr. Sterling has engaged in applied research in fields associated with parallel computing system structures, semantics, and operation in industry, government labs, and academia. Dr. Sterling is best known as the "father of Beowulf" for his pioneering research in commodity/Linux cluster computing. He was awarded the Gordon Bell Prize in 1997 with his collaborators for this work. He was the PI of the HTMT Project sponsored by NSF, DARPA, NSA, and NASA to explore advanced technologies and their implication for high-end system architectures. This three-year project involved a dozen institutions and 50 researchers to investigate superconducting logic, holographic storage, optical networks, and Processor-In-Memory components. Other research projects included the DARPA DIVA PIM architecture project with USC-ISI, the Cray Cascade Petaflops architecture project sponsored by the DARPA HPCS Program, and the Gilgamesh high-density computing project at NASA JPL. Thomas Sterling is currently engaged in research associated with the ParalleX advanced execution model for extreme scale computing. This work is to devise a new model of computation establishing the foundation principles to guide the co-design for the development of future generation Exascale computing systems by the end of this decade. His research has been conducted through several projects sponsored separately by DOE, NSA, DOD, NSF, DARPA, NASA and Microsoft. ParalleX is currently the conceptual centerpiece of the XPRESS project sponsored by DOE Office of Science X-stack program and has been demonstrated in proof-of-concept in the HPX runtime system software. Dr. Sterling is the co-author of six books and holds six patents.

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