Visit additional Tabor Communication Publications
December 01, 2006
So, how about it: what do you do for a living? What does your organization do? Why should anyone outside your company care?
Dr. Daniel Reed used a great analogy in his testimony before the U.S. House of Representatives wherein he described HPC as a universal intellectual amplifier. Unlike the telescope and the microscope -- tools that made huge differences in their respective fields -- HPC can apply to all aspects of human technical endeavor. HPC is special.
It's also small, and usually under some kind of threat. Either technology is stagnating, threatening relevance, or funding is stagnating, threatening our ability to accomplish our missions.
We need to take care of HPC. To help it grow we need to make sure that every possible new user understands what HPC could do for them, and that every current user clearly understands what HPC is doing for them.
To this very big end, every single one of us should be able to talk about what we do and the benefit that HPC delivers. And because we are a small, highly specialized community most of the people who need to hear about us aren't HPC folks. So the language that we use has to be meaningful, straight forward, and jargon-free. How would you explain HPC to your Mom? Have you explained HPC to your Mom?
What's in it for you? Plenty!
In case that end is a little to removed to motivate you, there are a lot of perfectly good career-centered ends to get you going.
First of all, being able to articulate what your company does -- either for the HPC community or for users, depending upon what you make -- is good for business. Any time you travel to a conference or meeting you'll be running into people who work in or use HPC. These folks are your customers and potential customers. Being able to tell them what you do and why they should care will bring your company more business.
Sure, you probably have a sales force. And they are better at this than you are. But there are a lot more non-sales people, so you can afford to not be great at it and still get a couple hits every once in a while.
Second of all, being able to tell people what you personally do, and the value that you personally provide, is good for your career.
Being able to clearly articulate your contribution within your organization will clarify your value in your boss's mind and give him ammo when it's promotion time. Outside your organization a clear understanding of your value and purpose will help you sell yourself effectively to someone who needs the skills (and perspective) you possess.
Be able to tell people what you do. It's good for HPC, it's good for your company, and it's good for you.
West is the director of a Top 20 supercomputing center and author of The Only Trait of a Leader (www.onlytraitofaleader.com), a book and blog about leadership and career skills for technology professionals. Contact him at email@example.com.
www.onlytraitofaleader.com Leadership and career skills to help scientists, engineers, and technologists find success doing what they love to do. No time to keep up? Subscribe to the RSS feed!
The Xeon Phi coprocessor might be the new kid on the high performance block, but out of all first-rate kickers of the Intel tires, the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) got the first real jab with its new top ten Stampede system.We talk with the center's Karl Schultz about the challenges of programming for Phi--but more specifically, the optimization...
Although Horst Simon was named Deputy Director of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, he maintains his strong ties to the scientific computing community as an editor of the TOP500 list and as an invited speaker at conferences.
Supercomputing veteran, Bo Ewald, has been neck-deep in bleeding edge system development since his twelve-year stint at Cray Research back in the mid-1980s, which was followed by his tenure at large organizations like SGI and startups, including Scale Eight Corporation and Linux Networx. He has put his weight behind quantum company....
May 16, 2013 |
When it comes to cloud, long distances mean unacceptably high latencies. Researchers from the University of Bonn in Germany examined those latency issues of doing CFD modeling in the cloud by utilizing a common CFD and its utilization in HPC instance types including both CPU and GPU cores of Amazon EC2.
May 15, 2013 |
Supercomputers at the Department of Energy’s National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) have worked on important computational problems such as collapse of the atomic state, the optimization of chemical catalysts, and now modeling popping bubbles.
May 10, 2013 |
Program provides cash awards up to $10,000 for the best open-source end-user applications deployed on 100G network.
May 09, 2013 |
The Japanese government has revealed its plans to best its previous K Computer efforts with what they hope will be the first exascale system...
May 08, 2013 |
For engineers looking to leverage high-performance computing, the accessibility of a cloud-based approach is a powerful draw, but there are costs that may not be readily apparent.
05/10/2013 | Cleversafe, Cray, DDN, NetApp, & Panasas | From Wall Street to Hollywood, drug discovery to homeland security, companies and organizations of all sizes and stripes are coming face to face with the challenges – and opportunities – afforded by Big Data. Before anyone can utilize these extraordinary data repositories, however, they must first harness and manage their data stores, and do so utilizing technologies that underscore affordability, security, and scalability.
04/15/2013 | Bull | “50% of HPC users say their largest jobs scale to 120 cores or less.” How about yours? Are your codes ready to take advantage of today’s and tomorrow’s ultra-parallel HPC systems? Download this White Paper by Analysts Intersect360 Research to see what Bull and Intel’s Center for Excellence in Parallel Programming can do for your codes.
In this demonstration of SGI DMF ZeroWatt disk solution, Dr. Eng Lim Goh, SGI CTO, discusses a function of SGI DMF software to reduce costs and power consumption in an exascale (Big Data) storage datacenter.
The Cray CS300-AC cluster supercomputer offers energy efficient, air-cooled design based on modular, industry-standard platforms featuring the latest processor and network technologies and a wide range of datacenter cooling requirements.