Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Good perspectives for the ‘beyond’ EMI

At the University of Manchester, the EGI Community Forum 2013 together with the 3rd EMI Technical Conference (8-12 April) is providing a great opportunity to reflect upon the use of the European Grid Infrastructure (EGI) across all research disciplines.

The afternoon of the first day Alberto Di Meglio, the EMI project leader, opened the afternoon sessions with a vision and strategy for the future ‘beyond EMI’. EMI is coming to an end in April 2013. During its three year duration, EMI has consolidated middleware and established a number of innovative initiatives around collaborative software developments and sustainability.

The future is indeed really promising. There were a number of long-term collaborations presentations given, including: SciencePAD (Platforms, Applications, Data) for Software information management, discovery, support for data-driven applications, open access and collaborations, and Middleware Development and Innovation Alliance (MeDIA), for technical collaborations on middleware for distributed computing and data services. Finally, Dcore Solutions, a company that uses open source and community developed software in other software solutions for eventual commercial exploitation.

SciencePAD is an initiative to capture, store and preserve information about software used in scientific research. It manages information such as publications, data analysis, authors and users, organizations, fundings, etc. in order to create a market place for software developers and users to satisfy the reciprocal needs.     

MeDIA is an open, lightweight collaboration to facilitate the development and evolution of middleware solutions. A launch event for this initiative will take place in Rome on the 22nd of April.

A very fruitful discussion on this very complex issue ended the afternoon sessions with a call to action for middleware developers to show their interest in the MeDIA initiative. “The continuous evolution of the middleware is essential for the development of the distributed computing software and EMI has created the opportunity for the future collaborations to secure its future” – concluded David Foster, CERN IT deputy department head.

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