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Development of Cyberinfrastructure During Rapid and Interconnected Change. Dan Lubin Cyberinfrastructure Program Manager NSF Office of Polar Programs Also thanks to Bill Wiseman Arctic Natural Sciences NSF Office of Polar Programs Arctic Forum 15 May 2008 Washington DC.

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development of cyberinfrastructure during rapid and interconnected change

Development of Cyberinfrastructure During Rapid and Interconnected Change

Dan Lubin

Cyberinfrastructure Program Manager

NSF Office of Polar Programs

Also thanks to Bill Wiseman

Arctic Natural Sciences

NSF Office of Polar Programs

Arctic Forum

15 May 2008 Washington DC

how must research adapt to a rapidly changing arctic
How must research adapt to a rapidly changing Arctic?

August 2004

August 1941

Muir and Riggs Glaciers, AK

Courtesy Mark Parsons, NSIDC

cyberinfrastructure becomes a critical consideration
Cyberinfrastructure becomes a critical consideration
  • Historical data in all forms must be preserved.
    • In a rapidly changing Arctic, data from past decades are a priceless benchmark.
  • We’re past IPCC 2007 Physical Science Basis.
    • On to assessment of ecological, human impacts, adaptation,
    • Increasing international collaboration.
    • Redouble climate observations for both physical and life sciences.
  • The physical, life science, and social science disciplines must be able to talk to each other!
    • Data of all types must be made interoperable across disciplines.
    • Large data sets such as satellite remote sensing and GCM model output must be accessible and interpretable across disciplines.
cyberinfrastructure by components
Cyberinfrastructure by Components

Learning & Work Force Needs & Opportunities

Virtual Organizations for Distributed Communities

High Performance Computing

Data Visualization & Interaction


Lucy Nowell, OCI

required reading

High Performance Computing

Data, Data Analysis & Visualization

Virtual Organizations

Learning & Workforce Development

Required Reading!

Cyberinfrastructure Vision, March 2007

Available on NSF Office of Cyberinfrasturcture web site


provides shared and connecting CI


Office of Cyberinfrastructure

Cyberinfrastructure in Practice

Courtesy Dan Atkins, OCI Director

Provisioning -Creation, deploymentand operation of advanced CI

Transformative Application - to enhance discovery & learning

Borromean Ring: The three rings taken together are inseparable, but remove any one ring and the other two fall apart. See

R&D to enhance technical and social effectiveness of future CI environments

oci science drivers apply directly to today s arctic climate change problems
OCI Science Drivers apply directly to today’s Arctic climate change problems
  • Inherent complexity and multi-scale nature of todays frontier science challenges.
  • Requirement for multi-disciplinary, multi-investigator, multi-institutional approach (often international).
  • High data intensity from simulations, digital instruments, sensor nets, observatories.
  • Increased value of data and demand for data curation & preservation of access.
  • Exploiting infrastructure sharing to achieve better stewardship of research funding.
  • Strategic need for engaging more students in high quality, authentic science and engineering education.

Dan Atkins, OCI Director


Emerging OCI Coordination Structure

National Science & Technology Council (OSTP)

Committee on Technology

Subcommittee on Networking & IT R&D

Other Federal Research & Mission Agency Programs

Advisory Committee on Cyberinfrastructure

Liaison with each Directorate/Office



Dep. Dir












ACCI Task Force Groups

Inter Agency Data Group

Directorate/Office CI Coordinators Committee

International e-science, cyber science programs

HPC Coordinating Group

Data Coordinating Group

Other Coordinating Groups TBD

Dan Atkins,

Director OCI

Additional linkage within NSF through joint appointments and every OCI Program Officer having a liaison role with another Directorate or Office


High Performance Computing

Track 1: One solicitation funded over 4 years: $200M acquisition + additional O&M cost.

Track 2: Four solicitations over 4 years: $30M/yr acquisition + additional O&M cost. First track 1 approved 8-07

  • TeraGrid
  • Large-scale operational CI for national open science community
    • 11 resource providers
    • 1 Grid Infrastructure Group (GIG)
  • Single unified allocation process
  • Comprehensive user support
    • Advanced applications & software integration
    • Science gateways
  • RS & Modeling: Don’t be afraid to check it out!
drivers for oci data data interoperability strategy
Drivers for OCI Data & Data Interoperability Strategy
  • Increased scale & heterogeneity of Data
  • Demand for federation & semantic interoperability
  • Increased expectations for sharing & openness
  • More systematic quality control & long-term access

Lucy Nowell, OCI

Examples from CADIS

(AON Program)


Federal Agencies, Academia, Library & Preservation Sector, Foundations & Non-profits, Commercial Sector, National Laboratories, International Agencies

OCI Data Strategy




Exec-level Review of NSF Data Policies

Blue Ribbon task force on sustainable data repositories


Lucy Nowell, OCI



P: Physical mtgs

I: Print-on-paper books, journals

F: Physical labs, studios, shops


P: Shared notebook

I: Library reserves

F: Time-shared physical labs, ...


P: AV conference

I: Web search

F: Online instruments


P: Email

I: Knowbots

F: Autonomous observatories

Virtual Organizations offer additional modes of interaction between People, Information, and Facilities


Diana Rhoten, OCI







Geographic Place


P: people, I: information, F: facilities, instruments

virtual organization examples
Virtual Organization Examples
  • NanoHUB (
    • Serving the nanotechnology community
    • One of the most successful sets of VO portal software, now spinning of as HUBzero (
  • National Ecological Observatory Network (
    • Continental-scale research platform investigating impacts of climate change, land use change, and invasive species on ecology
  • Network for Earthquake Engineering Cyberinfrastructure Center (NEESgrid) (
    • Real-time access to remote experiments in earthquake engineering
  • Arctic Observation Network (
    • Instrument deployment underway
    • Cooperative Arctic Data and Information Service (CADIS) evolving, very promising
cyberinfrastructure considerations lead to philosophical considerations
Cyberinfrastructure considerations lead to philosophical considerations
  • Data interoperability and virtual organizations require consideration of ontologies, semantics and provenance.
  • Data Product Suites versus Observation Suites
  • “Place-based” observations (e.g., LTER model) versus Large-scale observations (e.g.,NEON model)
  • Is your science plan capability based (What can we do?) or requirements based (What should be done?), and is this choice appropriate?
  • Does your plan for measuring climate and ecological forcings contain built-in assumptions about which are most important?
  • Rigorous consideration of CI requirements will compel you to answer these questions!
requirements for success with oci solicitations
Requirements for Success with OCI Solicitations
  • Domain Science (everything we do) must have an equal partnership with Computer Science.
    • Computer Science must not appear to be the servant of the Domain Science.
    • If you do anything polar – you are a domain scientist!
  • OCI panels tend to be heavily weighted by computer scientists’ input!
    • Not always by number, sometimes by unique expertise, strong personalities!
  • You should have a bona fide computer scientist as a collaborator.
    • Computer scientist, informatician, sociologist, etc., depending on solicitation.
    • Someone actively publishing in the area of his/her contribution.
    • Involve, or (even better) potential to publish: research in top-flight computer or information science peer-review journals.
    • Computer trade journals, software manuals, not sufficient for your reference list!
    • Your work/management plan must clearly discuss everyone’s role, even on a 5-page preproposal. A “token” computer scientist, or name dropping, won’t fly!
    • Broader Impacts must be robust and credible, not boilerplate!
  • Challenge: Panels are multidisciplinary, highly competitive – you must engage the reviewers and keep them excited about your work!
  • Positive: Great interest in global climate change issues throughout OCI!
proposal versus preproposal
Proposal versus Preproposal
  • Preparing a Proposal
    • You take lots of long walks.
    • You write the best 15 pages you can, finishing a draft at least several days before the deadline.
    • You do a lot of proofreading, editing, and polishing before submitting the proposal.
    • You can count on ~10 minutes of discussion about your proposal in the NSF panel.
  • Preparing a Preproposal
    • You need to take just as many long walks.
    • You only need to write 5 pages, but you need to engage the reviewers, convince them that your project is worth doing and will break new ground.
    • Convince reviewers that your team is well constituted.
    • Convince reviewers that details of methods and literature survey will follow in the full proposal.
    • You do just as much proofreading, editing, and polishing before submitting the preproposal.
    • You can count on ~5 minutes of discussion in the NSF panel.
cyberinfrastructure and opp
Cyberinfrastructure and OPP
  • OCI will very likely set the standard for future OPP investments in data management and interoperability, cyber-enabled collaboration, and other requirements for computational resources.
  • Most of the OCI solicitations lend themselves very well to polar concerns. Do consider submitting proposals!
  • There has already been good interest in OCI proposal submission by polar researchers earlier this year. Can we keep it up next year?
  • Polar Researchers: I’m on your side! (, 703-292-7416)