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The new Frontiers in Computing Systems group,  part of Columbia’s Data Science Institute, is hosting an inaugural full-day symposium, with leading speakers and panelists, to highlight the advances and grand challenges in Big Data infrastructure:  extreme-scale computing systems (hardware, parallel computing, software, databases) and their application to solve diverse cutting-edge problems in climate and ocean science, population-scale biomedical informatics, genomics, materials science, neuroscience, astrophysics and engineering.

The symposium includes an exciting keynote by Ruchir Puri, the chief architect of IBM’s Watson system, on "Engineering the Future of Cognitive Systems."  Other speakers include those developing state-of-art high-performance parallel computers and large-scale Python-based software platforms, as well as experts on computational problems in climate science, astrophysics, and protein folding simulation.

The event will include a keynote talk, lunch, two talk presentation sessions, a networking and poster session, and a panel of experts with audience participation.

 

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Friday, March 24
 

10:30am

Registration and Check-in
Friday March 24, 2017 10:30am - 11:00am
Davis Lobby 530 West 120th Street New York, NY 10027 USA

11:00am

Opening Remarks
Steven Nowick
Professor of Computer Science
Chair, Frontiers in Computing Systems working group
Columbia University

G. Michael Purdy 
Executive Vice President for Research
Professor of Earth & Environmental Sciences
Columbia University

Speakers
avatar for Steven Nowick

Steven Nowick

Professor of Computer Science; Chair, Frontiers in Computing Systems working group, Columbia University
STEVEN M. NOWICK is a Professor of Computer Science at Columbia University, and former chair and co-founder of the Computer Engineering Program.  He is the chair and founder of the Frontiers in Computing Systems working group in Columbia's Data Science Institute. He received a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Stanford University in 1993, and a B.A. from Yale University.   His main research is on design methodologies and CAD tools for... Read More →
avatar for G. Michael Purdy

G. Michael Purdy

Executive Vice President for Research; Professor of Earth & Environmental Sciences, Columbia University


Friday March 24, 2017 11:00am - 11:15am
Davis Auditorium 530 West 120th Street New York, NY 10027 USA

11:15am

Keynote: Engineering the Future of Cognitive Systems

"Engineering the Future of Cognitive Systems"

Ruchir Puri, Chief Architect of IBM Watson (IBM Fellow)

Recently, cognitive systems such as IBM Watson have made great strides in impacting many fields that are of fundamental relevance to society, from healthcare, to security and beyond. This has unleashed a torrent of innovation in cognitive systems that encompass a broad spectrum of computer science and engineering, from hardware infrastructure, to software stack, as­-a­-service platform layer, and finally data layer and cognitive applications. This talk will give an overview of the anatomy of a true cognitive system that lives and breathes in the cloud and will address key challenges that need to be addressed in the future.


Speakers
avatar for Ruchir Puri

Ruchir Puri

Chief Architect of IBM Watson, IBM Fellow., IBM Research
RUCHIR PURI is the Chief Architect of IBM Watson, and an IBM Fellow. Ruchir led the Deep Learning and Machine Learning Platform Initiative at IBM Research and also led IBM's efforts in software-hardware acceleration for cognitive and analytic workloads and drove strategy for differentiated cognitive computing infrastructure.   Dr. Ruchir Puri is a Fellow of the IEEE, an ACM Distinguished Speaker, an IEEE Distinguished Lecturer, and was... Read More →


Friday March 24, 2017 11:15am - 12:15pm
Davis Auditorium 530 West 120th Street New York, NY 10027 USA

12:15pm

Lunch
Friday March 24, 2017 12:15pm - 1:15pm
Davis Lobby 530 West 120th Street New York, NY 10027 USA

1:15pm

Afternoon Welcome
Speakers
avatar for Mary C. Boyce

Mary C. Boyce

Dean of Engineering, Morris A. and Alma Schapiro Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Columbia University


Friday March 24, 2017 1:15pm - 1:16pm
Davis Auditorium 530 West 120th Street New York, NY 10027 USA

1:15pm

Presentation Session I:  Systems
Session Chair:
Martha Kim, Associate Professor of Computer Science
Columbia University

  1. "Big Data, Streaming Graphs, and the Need for Innovation in Parallel Computer Architecture"
    Peter Kogge
    Chief Scientist and Founder, Emu Technology
    McCourtney Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, University of Notre Dame

    This talk will start with some insights gleaned from looking at real-world big data problems and how one example is affected by architecture. The Emu migrating thread architecture is then introduced and compared. A general template for integrated big graph batch and analytic processing is developed, and key graph operations, especially streaming, listed. The talk then ends with how the Emu architecture meshes well with such a dual-mode computing template.
     
  2. "Why Science Must Lead Computing in the Era of Big Data"
    Peter Wang
    CTO and Co-Founder, Continuum Analytics

    O
    ver the last 30 years, the PC and Internet booms have primarily driven funding and innovation in the for-profit business computing space.  Scientific computing has surely benefitted as an ancillary effect, but major technical computing initiatives (including supercomputers) have been a relatively niche pursuit in the broad technology ecosystem.

    Over the last few years, we've seen concurrent disruptions of hardware, software, networking, data, and algorithms -- all leading to a Cambrian explosion of approaches towards scaling massive computing on breathtakingly vast datasets.  The needs and interests of business computing and scientific simulation are colliding, leading to extremely exciting opportunities for innovation and discovery.

    In this talk, Peter will talk about the opportunity for scientific and technical computing to take the initiative in this unfolding Era of Data.  More importantly, he will discuss why it is of paramount importance for scientists to establish thought leadership not only in technical architecture and design, but also in areas such as reproducibility, data access, and ethics.

Speakers
avatar for Peter Kogge

Peter Kogge

Emu Technology, Chief Scientist and Founder, McCourtney Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, University of Notre Dame
PETER M. KOGGE received his Ph.D. in EE from Stanford in 1973. From 1968 until 1994 he was with IBM's Federal Systems Division, and is an IBM Fellow (1993). In 1994, he joined the University of Notre Dame as first holder of the McCourtney Chair in Computer Science and Engineering, where he served as both department chair and associate dean for research in the College of Engineering.  He is an IEEE Fellow, a Distinguished Visiting Scientist... Read More →
avatar for Peter Wang

Peter Wang

CTO and Co-Founder, Continuum Analytics
PETER WANG is the Chief Technology Officer and Co-Founder of Continuum Analytics.  He has been developing commercial scientific computing and visualization software for over 15 years, across a broad variety of areas, including 3D graphics, geophysics, financial risk modeling, large data simulation and visualization, and medical imaging.    Peter's interests in the fundamentals of vector computing and interactive visualization led... Read More →


Friday March 24, 2017 1:15pm - 2:15pm
Davis Auditorium 530 West 120th Street New York, NY 10027 USA

2:15pm

Poster Session and Break
Poster Titles and Presenters

  • A Lightweight Early Arbitration Method for Low-Latency Asynchronous 2D-Mesh NoCb s | Weiwei Jiang

  • Computational Models of Heterogeneous Lipid Membranes | Eran Agmon

  • Cross-ISA Machine Emulation for Multicores | Emilio Cota

  • Embedded Scalable Platforms for Heterogeneous Computing | Paolo Mantovani

  • Estimating Disease Heritability from 9 Million Patient Medical Records |
    Fernanda Polubriaginof

  • Hybrid Analog-Digital Computing for Solving Nonlinear Systems | Yipeng Huang

  • Ocean Carbon States: How to Extract Physically Meaningful Information From Earth System Model Output | Rebecca Latto

  • Pangeo: A Big Data Climate Science Platform | Ryan Abernathey

  • Variational inference for the multiarmed contextual bandit problem with linear Gaussian Mixture Models | Inigo Urteaga

Poster Presenters
avatar for Ryan Abernathey

Ryan Abernathey

Assistant Professor, Earth & Environmental Sciences, Columbia University
avatar for Eran Agmon

Eran Agmon

Postdoctoral Research Scientist, Columbia University Biological Sciences
Biomembranes, Molecular Dynamics, Coarse-grained simulations, Complex Systems
avatar for Emilio Cota

Emilio Cota

PhD Candidate in Computer Science, Columbia Engineering
Emilio is a PhD student in the System Level Design Group, led by prof. Luca Carloni. His research interests are computer architecture and systems software. Emilio is currently working on a scalable simulator for many-core heterogeneous machines, that is, machines that integrate large amounts of fixed-function hardware accelerators.
avatar for Yipeng Huang

Yipeng Huang

PhD Candidate in Computer Science, Columbia Engineering
Yipeng is a fifth year PhD student in computer science. | | Yipeng Huang received the B.S. degree in computer engineering in 2011, and M.S. and M.Phil. degrees in computer science in 2013 and 2015, respectively, all from Columbia University. He previously worked at Boeing, in the area of computational fluid dynamics and engineering geometry. His research interests include applications of analog computing, and performance and efficiency... Read More →
avatar for Weiwei Jiang

Weiwei Jiang

PhD Candidate in Computer Science, Columbia Engineering
Weiwei Jiang is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Computer Science at Columbia University, working with Prof. Steven Nowick. He received the M.S. degree in computer science from Columbia University in 2010 and the B.S. degree from Tsinghua University, China in 2008, with a concentration of electrical engineering. His current research focuses on low-power and high-performance asynchronous networks-on-chip to serve as an integrative medium for... Read More →
avatar for Rebecca Latto

Rebecca Latto

Student Research Assistant, APAM/ NASA GISS
Rebecca is sophomore at Columbia University in the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science, majoring in Applied Physics and focusing on atmosphere, oceans, and climate.
avatar for Paolo Mantovani

Paolo Mantovani

PhD Candidate in Computer Science, Columbia Engineering
Paolo is a PhD student at Columbia University working with the System-Level-Design group under the supervision of Professor Luca Carloni. He  completed his M.S. degree in Electronic Engineering at "Politecnico di Torino" in 2010 and earned his  piano diploma at the Conservatory of Music L. Campiani in Mantova in 2007.As a master student in Torino Paolo focused on VLSI and process-variation-awaredesign. At Columbia University his research... Read More →
avatar for Fernanda Polubriaginof

Fernanda Polubriaginof

PhD Candidate in Biomedical Informatics, Columbia University
Fernanda Polubriaginof is PhD Candidate of Biomedical Informatics at Columbia University. She received a MA in Biomedical Informatics from Columbia University in 2016, and a MD from Universidade de Santo Amaro, São Paulo, Brazil in 2013. Dr. Polubriaginof researches the use of informatics-supported methods to leverage existing clinical databases. Her work includes the study of data quality of patient characteristics in Electronic Health... Read More →
avatar for Iñigo Urteaga

Iñigo Urteaga

Postdoctoral Research Scientist, Columbia Data Science Institute
Postdoctoral Research Scientist at Columbia University, currently working on descriptive, predictive, and prescriptive Bayesian modeling for electronic health records.

Friday March 24, 2017 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Davis Lobby 530 West 120th Street New York, NY 10027 USA

3:00pm

Presentation Session II: Applications
Session Chair:
Nicholas Tatonetti, Assistant Professor of Biomedical Informatics
Columbia University

  1.  "Climate Science in the Age of Big Data"
    Gavin Schmidt
    Director, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies

    The amount of data from satellite observations, weather model reanalyses and climate model output is increasing rapidly and is now measured in 100’s of Petabytes and will soon reach Exabyte levels. The need to integrate these datasets and to evaluate and improve our models and our predictions has never been more acute, but our ability to query, test, and extract useful information from these datasets is actually decreasing. Neither bandwidth nor computer architectures are keeping up with the data flows and methods required to focus on the process-based diagnostics that are needed to improve models and provide better predictions. It remains an enormous challenge to come up with the next generation of tools and techniques that will be able to tame the climate science big data monster.
  2.  
  3. "How to Make a Galaxy from Scratch:  Challenges in Computational Galaxy Formation"
    Rachel Somerville
    Co-Lead, Galaxy Formation Group, Center for Computational Astrophysics, Simons Foundation
    Downsbrough Chair in Astrophysics, Rutgers University

    Understanding the formation of galaxies in a cosmological context is one of the great challenges of modern astrophysics. Galaxies form within a vast 'cosmic web' of filaments of dark matter, and are shaped by the energy released by the stars, supernovae, and supermassive black holes they harbor. As a result, large-scale numerical simulations of galaxy formation are extremely computationally demanding. They require not only grappling with approximately nine orders of magnitude in dynamic range, but also require the inclusion of a broad range of physical processes. I will discuss some of the recent progress in the area of computational galaxy formation, and some of the challenges that we face in the years to come.

  4. "Exploiting Hardware-Software Co-Design in a Special-Purpose Supercomputer to Speed Up Molecular Dynamics Simulation"
    Mark Moraes
    Head of Engineering, D.E. Shaw Research

    Anton 2 is the second generation of a family of massively-parallel special-purpose supercomputers for molecular dynamics simulations of proteins and other biological macromolecules.  The embedded software that runs on the Anton machines is co-designed with the underlying hardware, allowing the code to exploit unique capabilities of the hardware, and the hardware to make careful trade-offs for maximum performance, while preserving flexibility and programmability.  This closely coupled co-design is a major reason for Anton's large performance improvement -- as much as two orders of magnitude -- over commodity clusters and general-purpose supercomputers. This speedup enables the study of the structural changes underlying biological phenomena that occur on time scales far in excess of those previously accessible to computational study, with the ultimate aim of significantly advancing the process of drug discovery.

Speakers
avatar for Mark Moraes

Mark Moraes

Head of Engineering, D.E. Shaw Research
MARK MORAES is Head of Engineering at D.E. Shaw Research (DESRES), where he both leads and contributes directly to a large part of the engineering and systems development work.  He returned to the D.E. Shaw group in 2004 after spending several years designing systems management products at two Bay Area startups:  Pointrex, where he was a Founder and CTO, and Tapstone, where he served as CTO. During his previous stint with the D. E. Shaw... Read More →
avatar for Gavin Schmidt

Gavin Schmidt

Director, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies
GAVIN SCHMIDT is a climate scientist and Director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) in New York, as well as an adjunct researcher at the Columbia University Earth Institute. He works on understanding past, present and future climate change and on the development and evaluation of climate models. He is the principal investigator on the GISS Earth System Model, which uses NASA High Performance computing facilities, and is... Read More →
avatar for Rachel Somerville

Rachel Somerville

Co-Lead, Galaxy Formation Group, Center for Computational Astrophysics, Simons Foundation, Downsbrough Chair in Astrophysics, Rutgers University
RACHEL SOMERVILLE is a Distinguished Professor and holds the George A. and Margaret M. Downsbrough Chair in Astrophysics in the Rutgers University Department of Physics and Astronomy. She is jointly co-leading the Galaxy Simulations group at the Center for Computational Astrophysics in the Flatiron Institute of the Simons Foundation (NY). She was awarded the 2013 Dannie Heineman Prize for Astrophysics for providing fundamental insights into... Read More →


Friday March 24, 2017 3:00pm - 4:30pm
Davis Auditorium 530 West 120th Street New York, NY 10027 USA

4:30pm

Panel Session: Views from the Computing Frontier: Insights from Experts

Moderator:
Kyle Mandli, Assistant Professor of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics
Columbia University 

Panelists:
Sankar Basu
Program Director, National Science Foundation (CISE/CCF)

Leslie Greengard
Director, Center for Computational Biology, Simons Foundation (Flatiron Institute)
Professor, Courant Institute, NYU

Sitharthan Kamalakaran
Director of Bioinformatics, Institute for Genomic Medicine
Columbia University

Brad Spiers
Principal Solutions Architect, Micron Technology

Renata Wentzcovitch
Professor of Materials Science, and Earth & Environmental Sciences
Columbia University


Moderators
avatar for Kyle Mandli

Kyle Mandli

Assistant Professor of Applied Mathematics, Columbia University
KYLE T. MANDLI is an Assistant Professor of Applied Mathematics in the department of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics. He received his Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics in 2011 from the University of Washington studying multi-layered flow as it applies to storm-surge simulation. His research interests involve the computational and analytical aspects of geophysical shallow mass flows such as tsunamis, debris-flow and storm-surge. This also... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Sankar Basu

Sankar Basu

Program Director, National Science Foundation (CISE/CCF)
SANKAR BASU is a permanent Program Director at the NSF/CISE directorate. Prior to NSF, he was at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center, and on the faculty of Stevens Institute of Technology. He has visited the Ruhr University, Bochum, Germany as an Alexander von Humboldt fellow, and the MIT Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems for extended periods. During 2012 he served as an Embassy Science Fellow at the US Embassy in Berlin, Germany on... Read More →
avatar for Leslie Greengard

Leslie Greengard

Director, Center for Computational Biology, Simons Foundation (Flatiron Institute), Professor, Courant Institute, NYU
LESLIE GREENGARD is the Director of the Center for Computational Biology at the Flatiron Institute, a division of the Simons Foundation. He received his B.A. degree in Mathematics from Wesleyan University (1979), and his Ph.D. degree in Computer Science and M.D. degree from Yale University (1987).  From 1987-1989, he was an NSF Postdoctoral Fellow at Yale University and at the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, NYU, where he is... Read More →
avatar for Sitharthan Kamalakaran

Sitharthan Kamalakaran

Director of Bioinformatics, Institute for Genomic Medicine, Columbia University
SITHARTHAN (SID) KAMALAKARAN is the Director of Bioinformatics at the Institute for Genomic Medicine at Columbia University Medical Center. He received his Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2004, and a B.Tech. in Industrial Biotechnology from Anna University, Chennai, India.   His current work involves developing up scalable storage and computing systems for the analyses of population scale DNA... Read More →
avatar for Brad Spiers

Brad Spiers

Principal Solutions Architect, Micron Technology
BRAD SPIERS is a Principal Solutions Architect at Micron Technology, Inc. He spent almost twenty years on Wall Street, building system solutions to solve business problems.  He worked at Bank of America as a Senior Vice President in Technology Infrastructure. He was the technical lead of their next-generation cloud infrastructure, called Project Greenfield, which used Openstack and newer technologies to optimize their private cloud of... Read More →
avatar for Renata Wentzcovitch

Renata Wentzcovitch

Professor of Materials Science, and Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University
RENATA WENTZCOVITCH is a Professor of Materials Science and Engineering in the Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics Department, Earth and Environmental Sciences, and Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory at Columbia University. She was formerly a Professor of Materials Science and Engineering in the Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at the University of Minnesota.  Originally from Brazil, she holds a Ph.D. in Condensed... Read More →


Friday March 24, 2017 4:30pm - 5:15pm
Davis Auditorium 530 West 120th Street New York, NY 10027 USA

5:15pm

Closing Remarks
Speakers
avatar for Steven Nowick

Steven Nowick

Professor of Computer Science; Chair, Frontiers in Computing Systems working group, Columbia University
STEVEN M. NOWICK is a Professor of Computer Science at Columbia University, and former chair and co-founder of the Computer Engineering Program.  He is the chair and founder of the Frontiers in Computing Systems working group in Columbia's Data Science Institute. He received a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Stanford University in 1993, and a B.A. from Yale University.   His main research is on design methodologies and CAD tools for... Read More →


Friday March 24, 2017 5:15pm - 5:20pm
Davis Auditorium 530 West 120th Street New York, NY 10027 USA