[Beowulf] Interesting

Douglas Eadline deadline at eadline.org
Thu Oct 28 08:00:31 EDT 2010


Just reboot the matrix, probably turn out the same
in any case

--
Doug

> The recent digests that I am getting are quite interesting (bad google)
> and I have a question.
>
> What I'd like to know is, is it possible to have a our history captured in
> its entirety so that none of the future generations have to run around
> (like Hari Seldon) because information from waaaay back is corrupt and not
> take care of?
>
> Do you guys know of any existing sources that you can point me to?
>
> Is this under distributed systems or under compression algorithms?
>
> Any other two cents on this is welcome!
> Sent from my BlackBerry
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: beowulf-request at beowulf.org
> Sender: beowulf-bounces at beowulf.org
> Date: Wed, 27 Oct 2010 09:36:13
> To: <beowulf at beowulf.org>
> Reply-To: beowulf at beowulf.org
> Subject: Beowulf Digest, Vol 80, Issue 22
>
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> Today's Topics:
>
>    1. RE: how Google warps your brain (Bill Rankin)
>    2. RE: how Google warps your brain (Douglas Eadline)
>    3. RE: Anybody using Redhat HPC Solution in their Beowulf
>       (Hearns, John)
>    4. Re: Anybody using Redhat HPC Solution in their Beowulf
>       (Ellis H. Wilson III)
>    5. Re: Anybody using Redhat HPC Solution in their Beowulf
>       (Kilian CAVALOTTI)
>    6. RE: Anybody using Redhat HPC Solution in their Beowulf
>       (Lux, Jim (337C))
>
>
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> Message: 1
> Date: Tue, 26 Oct 2010 14:54:43 +0000
> From: Bill Rankin <Bill.Rankin at sas.com>
> Subject: RE: [Beowulf] how Google warps your brain
> To: Beowulf Mailing List <beowulf at beowulf.org>
> Cc: "Robert G. Brown" <rgb at phy.duke.edu>
> Message-ID:
> 	<76097BB0C025054786EFAB631C4A2E3C0948F542 at MERCMBX03D.na.SAS.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
>
> Heading completely off-topic now, but the area of digital media and
> long-term archival/retrieval is something that I find very interesting.
> I'll leave it to Rob to somehow eventually tie this back into a discussion
> of COTs technology and HPC.
>
>
>> > It's interesting: I just got an iPad a few weeks ago, mostly as a
>> > reader/web-browser device, and I've been reading a variety of
>> > out-of-copyright works: H. Rider Haggard, Joseph Conrad, Mark Twain.
>> Thank
>> > you Gutenberg Project!
>>
>> It is awesome, isn't it?
>
> Amazon also carries many of the out-of-copyright works in their Kindle
> store for $0 (and gives credit to Gutenburg to a small extent).  It was
> nice to be able to go pickup things like the Sherlock Holmes series,
> Homer's Illiad and some of Einstein's works (which I don't pretend to
> understand) and have them downloaded via 3G on Amazon's dime.
>
> I will say that because of this I tend to overlook their rather high
> (IMHO) price on current digital content and have probably purchased more
> e-books overall as a result.
>
>
>> > And, since I am sitting/lying here with a very sore back from moving
>> boxes
>> > of books around this weekend looking for that book that I *know* is in
>> there
>> > somewhere, the prospect of some magic box that would scan all my books
>> into
>> > a format usable into eternity would be quite nice.  I might even think
>> that
>> > a personal "print on demand" would be nice that could generate a
>> cheap/quick
>> > copy for reading in bed(yes, the iPad and Kindle, etc., are nice, but
>> > there's affordances provided by the paper edition that is nice.. But I
>> don't
>> > need hardcover or, even, any cover..)
>
> There is just *something* about paper, isn't there?  And while I don't
> have a library to the extent of RGBs or others, I do like having some
> books around (glancing at the two bookshelves in my office).  On the other
> hand, I still have boxes of books sitting around unopened since we moved
> house 4-5 years ago.  I certainly need a purge, lest I end up on one of
> those "hoarding" shows that seem to be popular as of late.
>
> At some point, I have to ask myself if I really *need* to have a old
> beat-up, falling apart copy of "Voyage of the Space Beagle" laying around.
>
>
>> > (or, even better, a service that has scanned all the books for me,
>> e.g.
>> > Google, and that upon receiving some proof of ownership of the
>> physical
>> > book, lets me have an electronic copy of the same...  I'd gladly pay
>> some
>> > nominal fee for such a thing, providing it wasn't for some horrible
>> locked,
>> > time limited format which depends on the original vendor being in
>> business
>> > 20 years from now.  I also recognize the concern about how "once in
>> digital
>> > form, copying becomes very cheap" which I think is valid.
>
> A scanning service would be wonderful for a lot of the books I have,
> mainly those I view as reference-type material.  For current reference
> material, Safari Books Online has a reasonable usage model that allows for
> making hardcopy of their online content.  Now if there was only a simple
> way to transcribe the same content for download to my Kindle I would be
> set (something beyond the OCR+PDF approach, which is awkward and
> inconsistent).
>
>
>> What a killer idea.  Acceptable use, doggone it!  I'd ship them books
>> by the boxful in exchange for a movable (even DRM controlled) image, a
>> la
>> Ipod music.  I just don't want to rebuy them, like I've now bought most
>> of my music collection TWICE (vinyl and CD).
>
> [let's not get started about vinyl collections - that's a whole 'nother
> set of unopened boxes]
>
> The problem is that many of the media houses are still waging an
> underground war on Fair Use, despite the legal decisions handed down by
> the courts.  As an example, I recently had a email exchange with one of
> the customer service people at a major network.  I was trying to locate
> additional interview footage from when my brother-in-law was on a certain
> hour-long Sunday evening news show.  This person informed me that I did
> not have their "permission" to recorded the over-the-air broadcast of the
> show and burn it on a DVD to give to my sister, so what I was doing was
> not legal.
>
> This was news to me, since this usage model was clearly defined as
> permissible by the Supreme Court many years ago in the Sony v. Universal
> "Betamax Case".
>
> While the market for online music, video and written works have forced the
> various publishers to acknowledge to the need to provide content in
> digital form, to a great extent they had to be dragged kicking and
> screaming into the 21st century.  A lot of progress has been made but
> there is still a lot of resistance towards efforts to open up availability
> and access even further.
>
>
> I would like see a service where I could take bins of old books to a used
> book store and somehow get credits towards the purchase of e-books online.
>  I think that could break me of my paperback hoarding habit pretty
> quickly.
>
>
> -bill
>
>
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 2
> Date: Tue, 26 Oct 2010 10:59:25 -0400 (EDT)
> From: "Douglas Eadline" <deadline at eadline.org>
> Subject: RE: [Beowulf] how Google warps your brain
> To: "Hearns, John" <john.hearns at mclaren.com>
> Cc: beowulf at beowulf.org, "Robert G. Brown" <rgb at phy.duke.edu>
> Message-ID:
> 	<49886.192.168.93.213.1288105165.squirrel at mail.eadline.org>
> Content-Type: text/plain;charset=iso-8859-1
>
> <Seinfeld>
> Not that there is anything wrong with that.
> </Seinfeld >
>
>>
>> As usual, a highly insightful post from RGB.
>>
>>
>>
>>>  a) Multiple copies.  Passenger pigeons may be robust, but once the
>> number of copies drops below a critical point, they are gone.  E. Coli
>> we will always have
>>> with us (possibly in a constantly changing form) because there are so
>> very many copies, so very widely spread.
>>
>> I probably shouldn't mention Wikileaks here...
>>
>>>
>>> At the moment, the internet has if anything VASTLY INCREASED a, b and
>> c
>>> for every single document in the public domain that has been ported
>> to,
>>> e.g. Project Gutenberg.
>>>
>>> Right now, I'm sitting on a cache of "Saint" books, by Leslie
>> Charteris
>>> (who was a great favorite of mine growing up and still is).
>>>
>>> Nobody is going to reprint the Saint stories.  They are a gay fantasy
>>> from another time,
>>
>> Simon Templar? Gay? Cough.
>>
>> Next you will be telling me that there are gay undertones in Top Gun,
>> the film with the sexiest astrophysicist ever.
>>
>>
>>> might well last to the end of civilization.  Replicate them a few
>>> million times, PERPETUATE them from generation to generation by
>>> renewing
>>> the copies, and backing them up, and recopying them in formats where
>>> they are still useful.
>>
>> The cloud backup providers will be keeping copies of data on
>> geographically spread sites.
>> However, we should at this stage be asking what are the mechanisms for
>> cloud storage companies
>> for
>> *) living wills - what happens when the company goes bust
>>
>> *) what are the strategies for migrating the data onto new storage
>> formats
>>
>>
>>>
>>> Or, to put it differently, suppose every single human on the planet
>> had
>>> access to the modern equivalent of Diophantus's Arithmetica on their
>>> computer, their Kindle, their Ipad
>> I believe that was the original intent for the Web. Still under
>> development!
>>
>>
>> The contents of this email are confidential and for the exclusive use of
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>
>
> --
> Doug
>
> --
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>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 3
> Date: Tue, 26 Oct 2010 09:16:47 +0100
> From: "Hearns, John" <john.hearns at mclaren.com>
> Subject: RE: [Beowulf] Anybody using Redhat HPC Solution in their
> 	Beowulf
> To: "Ellis H. Wilson III" <ellis at runnersroll.com>,
> 	<beowulf at beowulf.org>
> Message-ID:
> 	<68A57CCFD4005646957BD2D18E60667B12154E23 at milexchmb1.mil.tagmclarengroup.com>
>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
>
>> I don't think you could find a statement more orthogonal to the spirit
>> of the Beowulf list than, "Please, please don't "roll your own"
>> system..."  Isn't Beowulfery about the drawing together of inexpensive
>> components in an intelligent fashion suited just for your particular
>> application while using standardized (and thereby cheap by the law of
>> scale) hardware?  I'm not suggesting Richard build his own NIC - but
>> there is nothing wrong with using even a distribution of Linux not
>> intended for HPC (so long as you're smart about it) and picking and
>> choosing the software (queuing managers, tracers, etc) he finds works
>> best.
>>
>> Also, I would argue if a company is selling you an HPC solution, it's
>> either:
>> 1. A true Beowulf in terms of using COTS hardware, in which case you
>> are
>> likely getting less than your money is worth or
>
>
> Ellis, I am going to politely disagree with you - now there's a
> surprise!
>
> I have worked as an engineer for two HPC companies - Clustervision and
> Streamline.
> My slogan phrase on this issue is "Any fool can go down PC World and buy
> a bunch of PCs"
> By that I mean that CPU is cheap these days, but all you will get is a
> bunch of boxes
> on your loading bay. As you say, and you are right, you then have the
> option of installing
> Linux plus a cluster management stack and getting a cluster up and
> running.
>
> However, as regards price, I would say that actually you will be paying
> very, very little premium
> for getting a supported, tested and pre-assembled cluster from a vendor.
> Academic margins are razor thin - the companies are not growing fat over
> academic deals.
> They also can get special pricing from Intel/AMD if the project can be
> justified - probably ending
> up at a price per box near to what you pay at PC World.
>
> Or take (say) rack top switches. Do you want to have a situation where
> the company which supports your cluster
> has switches sitting on a shelf, so when a switch fails someone (me!) is
> sent out the next morning to deliver
> a new switch in a box, cable it in and get you running?
> Or do you want to deal direct with the returns department at $switch
> vendor, or even (shudder) take the route
> of using the same switches as the campus network - so you don't get to
> choose on the basis of performance or
> suitability, but just depend on the warm and fuzzies your campus IT
> people have.
>
>
> We then come to support - say you buy that heap of boxes from a Tier 1 -
> say it is the same company your
> campus IT folks have a campus wide deal with. You'll get the same type
> of support you get for general
> servers running Windows - and you'll deal with first line support staff
> on the phone every time.
> Me, I've been there, seen there, done it with tier 1 support like that.
> As a for instance, HPC workloads tend to stress the RAM in a system, and
> you get frequent ECC errors on
> a young system as it is bedding in. Try phoning support every time a
> light comes on, and get talked through
> the "have you run XXX diagnostic", it soon gets wearing.
> Before Tier 1 companies cry foul, of course both the above companies and
> all other cluster companies integrate
> Tier 1 servers - but that is a different scenario from getting boxes
> delivered through your campus agreement with
> $Tier1.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> The contents of this email are confidential and for the exclusive use of
> the intended recipient.  If you receive this email in error you should not
> copy it, retransmit it, use it or disclose its contents but should return
> it to the sender immediately and delete your copy.
>
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 4
> Date: Tue, 26 Oct 2010 12:09:12 -0400
> From: "Ellis H. Wilson III" <ellis at runnersroll.com>
> Subject: Re: [Beowulf] Anybody using Redhat HPC Solution in their
> 	Beowulf
> To: "Hearns, John" <john.hearns at mclaren.com>
> Cc: beowulf at beowulf.org
> Message-ID: <4CC6FD28.1050303 at runnersroll.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed
>
> On 10/26/10 04:16, Hearns, John wrote:
>> I have worked as an engineer for two HPC companies - Clustervision and
>> Streamline.
>> My slogan phrase on this issue is "Any fool can go down PC World and buy
>> a bunch of PCs"
>
> Well if you are buying PCs in bulk at retail pricing, you are a fool
> anyway.  Plus most PC World PCs won't have ECC RAM so I wasn't really
> referring to those as few of us tolerate random bit flips.
>
>> However, as regards price, I would say that actually you will be paying
>> very, very little premium
>> for getting a supported, tested and pre-assembled cluster from a vendor.
>> Academic margins are razor thin - the companies are not growing fat over
>> academic deals.
>> They also can get special pricing from Intel/AMD if the project can be
>> justified - probably ending
>> up at a price per box near to what you pay at PC World.
>
> Again, not comparing PC World to Tier 1 bulk purchases.  I'm comparing
> Tier 1 bulk purchases w/o an OS (so you can DIY) with specialized HPC
> vendor purchases where you don't have to DIY.  Even then, perhaps it
> breaks even the first year if you get a very, very good deal from the
> HPC vendor.  However, to get the deal you are probably contracted into
> four or five years of support and when considering HPC, involving more
> humans are the fastest way to get a really inefficient and expensive
> cluster.  After the first year and up until the lifetime of the cluster
> involving human support annually will add a large cost overhead you have
> to account for at the beginning (and probably buy less hardware because
> of which).
>
>> Or take (say) rack top switches. Do you want to have a situation where
>> the company which supports your cluster
>> has switches sitting on a shelf, so when a switch fails someone (me!) is
>> sent out the next morning to deliver
>> a new switch in a box, cable it in and get you running?
>
> That's probably a hell of a lot faster than waiting on a vendor to get
> you a new switch through some RMA process.  Plus you know the cabling is
> done right :).
>
> Optimally IMHO, in university setups physical scientists create the need
> for HPC.  These types shouldn't (as Kilian mentions) need to inherit all
> of the responsibilities and overheads of cluster management to use one
> (or pay cluster vendors annually for support).  They should simply walk
> over to the CS department, find system guys (who would probably drool
> over the potential of administering a reasonably sized cluster) and work
> out an agreement where the physical science types can "just use it" and
> the systems/CS guys administer it and can once in a while trace
> workloads, test new load balancing mechanisms, try different kernel
> settings for performance, etc.  This way the physical scientists get
> their work done on a well supported HPC system for no extra cash and
> computer scientists get great, non-toy traces and workloads to further
> their own research.  Both parties win.
>
> Now in organizations that don't have a CS department I agree that HPC
> vendors are the way to go.
>
> ellis
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 5
> Date: Tue, 26 Oct 2010 11:18:56 +0200
> From: Kilian CAVALOTTI <kilian.cavalotti.work at gmail.com>
> Subject: Re: [Beowulf] Anybody using Redhat HPC Solution in their
> 	Beowulf
> To: "Ellis H. Wilson III" <ellis at runnersroll.com>
> Cc: beowulf at beowulf.org
> Message-ID:
> 	<AANLkTimORzXXM=69Lq3KLNuanO30v6k2+qHy7Vs-6e-_ at mail.gmail.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=UTF-8
>
> Hi,
>
> On Tue, Oct 26, 2010 at 1:00 AM, Ellis H. Wilson III
> <ellis at runnersroll.com> wrote:
>> Also, I would argue if a company is selling you an HPC solution, it's
>> either:
>> 1. A true Beowulf in terms of using COTS hardware, in which case you are
>> likely getting less than your money is worth or
>
> Well, depends on how you value your time and the required expertise to
> put all those COTS and OSS pieces together to make them run smoothly
> and efficiently.
> Most scientists and HPC systems users are not professional sysadmins
> (which is good, they have a job to do), and the value of trained,
> experienced, skilled individuals who can put together a reliable and
> useful HPC system is sometimes overlooked (ie. undervalued).
>
> I agree with your later statement, though:
>
>> I personally don't think the "market for cluster vendors" is [...]
>> the Beowulf list.
>
> Cheers,
> --
> Kilian
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 6
> Date: Wed, 27 Oct 2010 09:32:43 -0700
> From: "Lux, Jim (337C)" <james.p.lux at jpl.nasa.gov>
> Subject: RE: [Beowulf] Anybody using Redhat HPC Solution in their
> 	Beowulf
> To: "Ellis H. Wilson III" <ellis at runnersroll.com>, "Hearns, John"
> 	<john.hearns at mclaren.com>
> Cc: "beowulf at beowulf.org" <beowulf at beowulf.org>
> Message-ID:
> 	<ECE7A93BD093E1439C20020FBE87C47FEDD29F961A at ALTPHYEMBEVSP20.RES.AD.JPL>
>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
>
>
>>
>> Optimally IMHO, in university setups physical scientists create the need
>> for HPC.  These types shouldn't (as Kilian mentions) need to inherit all
>> of the responsibilities and overheads of cluster management to use one
>> (or pay cluster vendors annually for support).  They should simply walk
>> over to the CS department, find system guys (who would probably drool
>> over the potential of administering a reasonably sized cluster) and work
>> out an agreement where the physical science types can "just use it" and
>> the systems/CS guys administer it and can once in a while trace
>> workloads, test new load balancing mechanisms, try different kernel
>> settings for performance, etc.  This way the physical scientists get
>> their work done on a well supported HPC system for no extra cash and
>> computer scientists get great, non-toy traces and workloads to further
>> their own research.  Both parties win.
>>
>
>
> I don't know about this model.
> This is like developing software on prototype hardware.  The hardware guys
> and gals keep wanting to change the hardware, and the software developers
> complain that their software keeps breaking, or that the hardware is buggy
> (and it is).
>
> The computational physics and computational biology guys get to work on
> cool, nifty stuff to push their dissertation forward by using a hopefully
> stable computational platform.
> But I don't think the CS guys would drool over the possibility of
> administering a cluster. The CS guys get to be sysadmin/maintenance
> types...not very fun for them, and not the kind of work that would work
> for their dissertation.
>
> Now, if the two groups were doing research on new computational methods
> (what's the best way to simulate X) perhaps you'd get a collaboration.
>
>
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
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> End of Beowulf Digest, Vol 80, Issue 22
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-- 
Doug

-- 
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