August, 2007

Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

eScience & Technical Computing - Web Services and Scientific Research

August, 2007

  • Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

    MSR Learning Assessment Toolkit

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    Yesterday I had a really good discussion with Jamie Cromack on her efforts around putting together a Learning Assessment Toolkit.  This toolkit is are valuable asset for professors teaching both in CS and STEM.

    The Microsoft Research Assessment Toolkit was conceived to provide higher education faculty members with user-friendly, focused resources to assist in developing and conducting rigorous educational assessment. The Toolkit includes a variety of items to facilitate the planning and implementation process, including:

    1. An overview of assessment and assessment planning guide.
    2. User self-assessment tool to help faculty determine their level of assessment experience. The components of the kit are coded to allow users to find tools and strategies appropriate for their needs.
    3. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) that explain assessment issues with minimal use of jargon.
    4. Case studies of effective assessment that provide a snapshot of faculty in various computational science or STEM disciplines.
    5. A guide to selecting assessment tools.
    6. Annotated resources primarily focused on computational science and STEM disciplines and organized by topical categories.
    7. Web links to various assessment-related sites or organizations.

    Development of the Toolkit will be an ongoing effort; Toolkit materials are available online at http://research.microsoft.com/erp/AssessmentToolkit.

  • Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

    C#UNG - C# Universal Network/Graph System

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    Here's a really cool C# application for displaying graphs from MSR...

    Microsoft C#UNG (pronounced “chung” and short for C# Universal Network/Graph System) is a desktop application that displays graphs, which are collections of vertices connected by edges. C#UNG can read graphs in several file formats, lay them out using one of several layout algorithms, and display them with a variety of display options. An Excel add-in enables graph data entered in an Excel worksheet to be displayed easily in C#UNG. The components used to develop the application are available as an API for developers who want to create and display graphs in their own applications.

     downloadbtn[1]

    C#UNG

  • Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

    Silverlight Apps

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    Saw this post by Qixing on the uses of Silverlight in different sites - I'd like to start compiling a list of eScience sites/applications using Silverlight...let me know if you are using it...

  • Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

    Tafiti - Search and Silverlight experiment

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    LiveSide has a really good overview of Tafiti a site that utilizes Silverlight as a way to capture search results - it's not only cool - it's a lot of fun to play with...check it out...now if aimed at scientific researchers and had the ability to capture papers and datasets...I'll ask Savas to get on it :-)

    What is Tafiti?

    Tafiti, which means "do research" in Swahili, is an experimental search front-end from Microsoft, designed to help people use the Web for research projects that span multiple search queries and sessions by helping visualize, store, and share research results. Tafiti uses both Microsoft Silverlight and Live Search to explore the intersection of richer experiences on the Web and the increasing specialization of search.

  • Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

    Code Camp 8 Registration: Rise of the Silverlight Surfer

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    For you eScience folks in the Boston area - here's a real opportunity to hear/see how Silverlight can be utilized...

    Code Camp 8 Registration and Call for Speakers Open!

    CodeCamp

    We're live and ready (thanks, Chris Pels!)  Attendee registration and the Call for Speakers are both now open for Code Camp 8: Rise of the Silverlight Surfer!

    The Details

     Code Camp 8: Rise of the Silverlight Surfer will be held at the Microsoft offices in Waltham, MA on the weekend of September 29th and 30th.  Registration at 8:30 AM, sessions start at 9:00.  As always, it's a completely free event (and you'll probably walk away with some swag as well.)

    What's a Code Camp?  They are learning and networking events driven by and for the local developer community.  There's no set agenda for what kind of sessions can be submitted (despite the attempt at humor with the Silverlight subtitle) - you and your fellow developers and architects define the content.  See the Code Camp Manifesto for more and scan the summary of Code Camp 7 for an idea of what you might see at CC8.

    Chris Bowen's Blog : Code Camp 8 Registration and Call for Speakers Open!

  • Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

    Windows Live Folders now Windows Live SkyDrive

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    I've been waiting for it and now it's available more broadly - a way to share files in the could...take a look at SkyDrive.  I can see a science project utilizing Spaces, SkyDrive, Astoria, etc to put all the pieces together to make it work...


    featuring:

    • An upgraded look and feel — new graphics to go along with your new features!
    • "Also on SkyDrive" — easily get back to the SkyDrives you’ve recently visited
    • Thumbnail images — we heard you loud and clear, and now you can see thumbnails of your image files
    • Drag and drop your files — sick of our five-at-a-time upload limit? Drag and drop your files right onto your SkyDrive
    • Embed your stuff anywhere — with just a few clicks, post your files and folders anywhere you can post html

    Check out their team blog - http://skydriveteam.spaces.live.com/

  • Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

    Debugging MPI on Windows

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    Here's a very helpful post I ran across from Volker's blog on debugint MPI application on Windows.... 

    VolkerW's WebLog : Debugging MPI on Windows

    This week our team hosts an event for Microsoft partners working on HPC migration projects. Developing requires debugging. The Microsoft toolset, namely Visual Studio, supports remote debugging of MS-MPI based applications. Christian is helping out in the lab and started a 2 part blog post about How to Debug MPI Applications in Visual Studio 2005. More details about debugging of parallel applications can also be found on MSDN and here.

    Virtually Yours

    VolkerW's WebLog : Debugging MPI on Windows

  • Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

    Photosynth - NASA Shuttle

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    Here's are some amazing collections of images of the Space Shuttle...amazing technology.   

    Current collections include:

    • The interior and surrounding area of the Vehicle Assembly Building, the largest one-story building in the world, used for housing external fuel tanks and flight hardware, and the location of the Orbiter stacking with the solid rocket boosters and external fuel tank to prepare for the space shuttle launch.
    • Endeavour on the launch pad including amazing detail shots taken from a helicopter
    • The previous flight STS-117 Shuttle Atlantis returning from Edwards Air Force Base in California to Kennedy's Shuttle Landing Facility.

    Microsoft Live Labs: Photosynth

  • Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

    RESTful architecture of Microsoft Robotics Studio « Jon Udell

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    Ran across Jon Udell's screencast on the Robotics Studio and is' RESTful architecture...I've seen the demos in person and they are quite impressive.  Also, I've run across a number of folks that have used the Robotics Studio infrastructure for modeling other processes outside of robots...even scientific models.  I think it's quite an interesting system to investigate for working on scientific problems.  I'd be quite interested in hearing about those explorations... 

    Henrik Frystyk Nielsen on the RESTful architecture of Microsoft Robotics Studio

    Henrik Frystyk Nielsen used to work for the World Wide Web Consortium on some key pieces of infrastructure including the HTTP specification and libwww. He left the W3C in 1999 and now works for Microsoft where his current project is Robotics Studio, whose tagline is: “A Windows-based environment for academic, hobbyist and commercial developers to easily create robotics applications across a wide variety of hardware.” What that description doesn’t tell you, but today’s screencast shows, is that the Robotics Studio is based on a RESTful architecture, and that applications are built by composing lightweight services in ways that will be instantly familiar to every web developer.

    To drive home that point, much of the action in this screencast occurs in a web browser, where you’ll see Henrik explore a distributed directory of services and view XML snapshots of the current state of bumpers, cameras, and laser range finders.

    From a read-only perspective it’s all HTTP GET, and you can do things like subscribe to robotic sensors using RSS feeds. When you control a robot, SOAP is used to optimize fine-grained updates. But either way it’s a loosely coupled and late bound system that leverages the fundamental flexibility of web architecture in a very different domain. In one compelling demonstration of that flexibility, you’ll see a generic controller — which had been controlling the robot in Henrik’s office with no prior knowledge of the device, purely by interface discovery — switch over to a simulated robot and drive it by means of the same kind of discovery.

    Henrik Frystyk Nielsen on the RESTful architecture of Microsoft Robotics Studio « Jon Udell

  • Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

    Dual Boot CCS and Linux Whitepaper

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    Just saw VolkerW post info on the whitepaper to help understand how to setup a cluster to dual boot between WinCCS and Linux...very helpful.

    Dual Boot CCS and Linux

    Project1 Hot off the (virtual) press: "Windows® Compute Cluster Server 2003 and Linux." Many partners, especially in academia, have asked about and experimented with getting a system to dual boot a Linux distro and Windows Compute Cluster Server (CCS). Microsoft has published a whitepaper describing the installation and configuration of a High-Performance Computing (HPC) cluster for a dual boot of Microsoft Windows CCS and the Linux OpenSuSE Operating System (OS).

    Download the doc here.

    Virtually Yours

    VolkerW's WebLog : Dual Boot CCS and Linux

  • Dan on eScience & Technical Computing @ Microsoft

    Abstracts extension for eScience Workshop

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    There was some confusion on where to post abstracts for the eScience Workshop - so the deadline was extended. 


    The 2007 Microsoft eScience Workshop at RENCI

    Deadline for abstracts extended to Monday August 20, 12 noon PST

    Please submit abstracts online at https://cmt.research.microsoft.com/escience07/
    Authors will be notified of acceptance by Monday September 3rd.
    (Only abstracts from registered attendees will be accepted; please register using the link at the bottom of this page)
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