(Posted on behalf of Bob Jones, Enabling Grids for E-sciencE project director)
The week-long ISGC2010 came to an end on Friday 12 March. It focussed on data driven e-Science highlighting use cases and successful applications of distributed computing infrastructures in the Asia Pacific region. There was a mixture of plenary and parallel sessions as well as a poster exhibition. A series of workshops and tutorials preceded the symposium, attracting 70 people.
The symposium attracted more than 150 participants from 27 countries spanning Asia, Europe and the Americas. The keynotes by invited speakers highlighted the impact of distributed computing infrastructures in research disciplines such as social sciences and humanities, civil protection, paediatrics and high energy physics. Having identified important use cases, further keynotes outlined plans for their long-term support and the move towards sustainable infrastructures across Asia, Europe and Latin America. Plenary sessions entitled Grid Activities in Asia Pacific surveyed the state of grid deployment across 12 Asian countries.
For the first time there was participation from Latin American colleagues which opened possibilities for cooperation between groups in Asia and Latin America the two regions on research in the domain of natural disaster mitigation, epidemic studies and drug discovery for diseases such as dengue fever and malaria.
Through the parallel sessions, the impact of distributed computing infrastructures in disciplines such as social sciences and humanities, life sciences, earth sciences, high energy physics, digital libraries and natural disaster mitigation. Operational procedures, middleware and security aspects were addressed in a dedicated sessions. A subject which has seen a growing interest is the integration of grid and clouds with a very popular series of talks to the point that we are considering renaming ISGC the International Symposium on Grids and Clouds.
A number of projects, many co-funded by the European Commission, are coming to close during the first half of 2010, so the symposium provided the occasion for them to present their results and lessons learnt. At the same time a number of new projects are starting and hence can build on the result and experiences of their predecessors. A key subject that was in the minds of participants from all regions was how to ensure the long-term availability of distributed computing infrastructures for the research communities. A clear value of the symposium was that participants from different continents could compare their experiences, identifying common questions and barriers to sustainability and profiting from each other experiences to develop solutions.
For the first time, the symposium was covered online in real-time by the GridCast team from the GridTalk project. A running blog including summarises of specific sessions as well as video interviews with keynote speakers and personalities and photos
Prof. Simon Lin organised an intense social programme with a gastronomic tour of Taipei culminating with a banquet for all the symposium’s participants at the Howard Plaza hotel.
I would like to thank all the members of the programme committee, the participants and above all our hosts, Prof. Simon Lin and his excellent support team at Academia Sinica.