[Beowulf] HPC Workflows

John Hanks griznog at gmail.com
Sat Dec 1 06:29:01 PST 2018

For me personally I just assume it's my lack of vision that is the problem.
I was submitting VMs as jobs using SGE well over 10 years ago. Job scripts
that build the software stack if it's not found? 15 or more. Never occurred
to me to call it "cloud" or "containerized", it was just a few stupid
scripts to solve some specific problem we had. I look at containers and
cloud now and just don't get it. Early in my career I had a mentor who was
from the IBM mainframe world. I recall excitedly explaining what I was
playing around with with early Xen versions and he said "Yeah, we've been
doing that for a long time." Now it's my turn to say "Yeah, I was doing
that years ago" and scratch my head at what all the fuss is about. Such are
the effects of the ravages of time.

Keeping distance from IT is always a good idea. The first rule of
interacting with IT is: "IT is not here to solve your problem, IT is here
to justify more IT. If your problem is solved, then it is the result of
random chance, do not look for patterns." Best to sit as close to the
scientists as possible.


On Sat, Dec 1, 2018 at 12:53 AM <m.somers at chem.leidenuniv.nl> wrote:

> Yeah, I often thing some people are using the letters HPC as in 'high
> profile computing' nowadays. The diluting effect I mentoined a few posts
> ago.
> Actually LOT of HPC admin folks I know are scientists, scientificly active
> and tightly coupled to scientists in groups and they were doing DevOps
> even before it got that fancy name.
> Here at my uni I find it is *regular* IT that needed and is (indeed in a
> strange herdy way) adjusting to the pace and workings of scientists and
> science. They are using old concepts that have recently relabeled into
> configuration management or stack deployments etc. (as if we used to
> install them hundreds of HPC nodes all by hand or something?) Things there
> get re introduced by them commercial-here-is-my-bill-consultants with a
> fancy gui klickemy-thingy oh and an icon. Let me tell you, now they are
> doing them stand up comedy things there with their scum mates every day
> and are talking about 'fragile' software and saying things like 'moving
> fast breaking things' ?!
> Ha, all i can say is i am keeping my distance there cause there is a lot
> of branding and marketing buzzword speak involved and it is giving me a
> rash ! Back to running my Molecular Quantum Dynamics I am.
> m.
> --
> mark somers
> tel: +31715274437
> mail: m.somers at chem.leidenuniv.nl
> web:  http://theorchem.leidenuniv.nl/people/somers
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