On tour with NCAR

SCD hits the road -- to San Jose, San Francisco, Phoenix . . .

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by Lynda Lester


SCD hit the road this winter, bringing NCAR technology and research to three prime-time conferences in computation and earth sciences: SC97, the American Geophysical Union (AGU), and the American Meteorological Society (AMS).

In a morphing world of multiprocessors, petaflops, and 3D sims, SCD talked with experts about trends in high-performance computing and state-of-the-art science.

They were just doing their jobs: helping to build collaboratories, cross-fertilize alliances, and grow a networked research environment for the new millennium.

It was a chance to breathe a wider air -- as it always is when thousands of people, the best and brightest in their fields, go forth to multiply, divide, and do fast Fourier transforms.

Conference attendees visiting the NCAR booth showed extreme interest in NCAR computing facilities and atmospheric research. SCD presented NCAR achievements, confabbed with vendors on the need for compute cycles, shared information with other centers, and exchanged arcane bits of knowledge with fellow adepts -- bits that may only be shared among equals in the secret oral tradition ("check out the volumetric rendering on that one ...").

E-mail from the floor at AGU evinced the high-res energy sustained during all three shows.

SCD staff took Tabasco sauce with lunch but, in contrast to a recent TV commercial, observed no exploding mosquitoes.

A productive time was had by all.

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