Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Transition model

So it was said yesterday at the dinner, "EGEE is dead, long live EGI!" Indeed, transition from one structure to another is on everybody's mind. And the Nordic location of this User Forum can provide an interesting opportunity to learn about different infrastructure models. The Nordic BioGrid talk on Tuesday offered the first glimpse into specifics of the Nordic DataGrid Facility and its model of user and application support. Two talks from Finland on Wednesday will add to the picture; I particularly anticipate presentation of the Material Science VO, as it is quite different from the "traditional" HEP community. On a related note, a live demo of gLite-ARC interoperability in the framework of the Swiss GRIDSEED project will show the potential of a more loosely coupled infrastructure, enjoying freedom to deploy different solutions depending on user requirements.

Nordic countries pioneered a truly distributed infrastructure built by service providers from different countries with minimal centralized intervention. We built a highly efficient Nordic DataGrid Facility that is based on very heterogeneous comuting resources. We deployed a distributed storage facility that acts as one storage "cloud". And we even have our own middleware, ARC, that makes all this possible. True, none of these achievements are due to EGEE, which explains a rather low profile of Nordic contributions at this Forum. But it surely should be an important input to EGI, and to me looks like a perfect transition model.

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