September 23, 2005

Letters to the Editor

Mihaela Vorvoreanu, University of Dayton

John Van Workum, Tsunamic Technologies

Let's Talk Xanga or Let's Just Talk

In an article published in the Sept. 16, 2005 edition of HPCWire, Madhavan, Goasguen and Bertoline make a revolutionary argument about delivering education in ways generation Z-ers “dig.” I welcome this argument and applaud the authors for their ideas.

Although these ideas might be fresh in HPC education, in my field, they are grounded in over 2,000 years of knowledge. Ever since Aristotle, the golden rule of communication has been to know your audience. In rhetoric, communication and public relations we teach and practice the golden rule of audience adaptation: know where your audience is, what your audience does, what audience members like and customize your message and its delivery to fit their lifestyle.

Madhavan et al's argument about changing education is essentially rooted in this idea of audience adaptation. In the past, HPC and the humanities seemed scared to talk to each other, because they spoke different languages. I'm thrilled to see that Madhavan et al's article speaks our language and I would like to extend an invitation to dialogue and collaboration. You know HPC; we know communication: we know how to research and understand audiences, how to adapt messages, to get attention, to persuade.

I see ample opportunities for fruitful collaboration here. So let's talk Xanga, let's talk education or let's just talk. We could do great things together.

Mihaela Vorvoreanu

Assistant professor


Department of Communication


University of Dayton


Her research focuses on the communication experience of using new and emerging communication technologies, with applications in public relations.

Limit HPC Hardware Dependency

I'm writing in response to the article “Getting an HPC Education” (HPCwire, Sept. 20).

I've read articles over the past several years about the lack of HPC programs in high schools and junior colleges. I think the idea is out there, but educators are struggling with how to get it started. I feel one of the biggest problems faced by educators is the HPC hardware dependency. If we eliminate hardware out of this equation, then educators can at least have a better chance of getting HPC programs off the ground.

Your article sparked me to put together a datasheet on “Cluster Computing Systems on Demand” and write this email. My company provides cluster computing services over the internet. I feel this would be ideal for educators. They can focus on the computer science and not on funding and maintaining of equipment.

I'm looking to donate time and resources for a few potential pilot users trying to get their HPC programs off the ground. My company can help, but I need to reach the right people. If you know or come across any, please keep me in mind.

John Van Workum

Tsunamic Technologies Inc.


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