Network Systems Colloquium


Prof. Miron Livny
University of Wisconsin-Madison

December 6, 2PM
CS 101


The recent dramatic decrease in the cost-performance ratio of processing, storage and communication hardware has turned computing in to a commodity. Computers and disks are considered "supplies" and are purchased under the same budget category as pencils and erasers. As a result of this trend, we can find today powerful computing capabilities resting on office desks, piled on laboratory shelves or mounted on racks in machine rooms. These abundant computing and storage resources are managed by of-the-shelf software and are interconnected by high-speed networks. Individuals and small groups own these resources and exercise full control over their usage. Researchers and engineers in academia, research laboratories and industry are looking for frameworks and software tools that will enable them to harness this power. In the talk we will discuss the challenges we face in transforming "communities" of loosely coupled and distributively owned commodity hardware and software into effective computing environments. We will present what we believe to be the key mechanisms required to turn such communities into dependable systems capable of delivering large amounts of computing cycles over very long time periods. The talk is based on our decade long experience with the Condor high throughput computing system, close interaction with a wide range of domain scientists and our recent involvement in national efforts to develop and build computational and data grids.

Miron Livny is Professor in the Computer Sciences Department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Prof. Livny's research interests include efficient and effective exploitation of very large collections of computing and storage resources to support scientific computing and desk-top experiment management methodologies and tools that support the entire life-cycle of an experimental study. His past accomplishments include pioneering work in the area of distributed load balancing. Prof. Livny has over 50 publications in the area of distributed and parallel scheduling and resource management. He also developed software systems - The DeNet simulation environment, the Condor High Throughput Computing environment, the ZOO Desktop Experiment Management Environment, and the DEVise Visual Integration and Exploration Environment - all of which have been used to support real-life R&D efforts. The more mature systems have been widely deployed in industrial and academic labs.

The Network Systems Colloquium is sponsored by the Network Systems Lab at Purdue University. For further information, please contact Kihong Park ( or 765-494-7821).