Sunday, February 19, 2012: 1:00 PM-2:30 PMImagine an app store for scientists, engineers, and educators filled with simulation and modeling tools — not simple Java applets, but real research codes that tackle difficult problems and may require substantial computing power drawn from the cloud. Imagine a new way of publishing scientific work that involves not just articles about those tools, but the tools themselves, online and accessible to the world through an ordinary Web browser. That dream has become a reality for a wide variety of topics, including nanotechnology, health care, pharmaceuticals, earthquake engineering, volcanic activity, and environmental modeling. Each of those areas has used an open source software package called the HUBzero® Platform for Scientific Collaboration to create an online collaboratory called a “hub” for their community. Each hub contains an electronic library of simulation tools, along with datasets, seminars, tutorials, and teaching materials contributed by the community. So far, 30 such hubs are in operation, and all together, they have served more than 450,000 visitors from 172 countries worldwide during the past 12 months. The panel covers three such areas — nanotechnology, health care, and earthquake engineering — and has thriving communities engaged in research and education. Attendees will see how an extensible cyberinfrastructure specifically designed for scientists and engineers can empower people to work together, accelerating the pace of innovation.
Michael McLennan, Purdue University