One step closer to the BalticLSC Environment

According to the insights provided by various stakeholders in different project countries, there is still a confusion on what is already possible in the field of large-scale computing (LSC) and how to fully utilise the rising opportunities for improving their daily business needs. This revelation has been made during the partner’s meeting in Hamburg held to discuss an input from a wide range of stakeholders involved in setting up the Baltic LSC Environment.

Throughout the first semester of the implementation of the project, partners have organised international and local workshops as well as individual meetings with potential cooperation partners and possible end-users to gather their thoughts, ideas and needs on BalticLSC Environment, including functional and non-functional features. They have also collected stakeholders’ inputs on BalticLSC Platform and (hardware and operating systems) and on BalticLSC Software (administrative and computation tools). During the Hamburg meeting all these inputs have been further discussed by the partnership.

Despite different approaches taken by each partner, the final results of the interaction with the stakeholders have proven to be similar. Stakeholders have indicated the lack of computational resources, appropriate algorithms, proper data and suitable knowledge as the primary problematic areas of engaging with LSC. Issues, such as security for sensitive data, forecasting calculation time/cost and simulation and data processing type problems have been also added to the list. Furthermore, the idea of students and professors developing modules/applications that could benefit companies in the ‘real world’ instead of being ‘stored away’ in universities has been discussed.

In terms of functional and non-functional features of BalticLSC Environment, the insights provided by the stakeholders have led to the conclusion that the highest priority should be given to the functionality of the system – what kind of problems it can solve. Partners have also agreed that the market should be analysed and cases that are currently utilised should be the starting point for the further development of the system. Since ensuring security and reliability of the service has been one of the crucial topics for the stakeholders, partners have set their focus on checking and applying the appropriate standards. One key regulation to be followed on all levels is the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). According to the partnership, relevant measures should be taken to protect the personal data on all BalticLSC user levels as well as protecting the end-user data during different LSC operations.

As for the reliability, partners have decided that it is important to ensure uninterrupted operations day and night. There must be external staff approachable to solve issues, such as debugging. Resources available must be made transparent and their allocation should be possible across different service providers. Whereas for the quality, it is important to ensure a robust performance that can be sustained 24/7.

Partners have also discussed several sectors with the potential case studies for the BalticLSC Environment. Video processing framework, Digital Weather Modeling, Molecular modelling, Fraud detection and taxation in banking, Analysis of satellite data with artificial intelligence and deep learning algorithms, GPS Location calculations and many others have been indicated as the ones suitable for LSC, however, the most significant effort is needed on testing, analysing and choosing  the ones with highest potential in the future.

Based on partners’ discussion in Hamburg and the insights provided by the stakeholders there will be three reports developed by the partnership: BalticLSC Environment Vision Report, BalticLSC Platform Architectural Vision Report and BalticLSC Software Architectural Vision Report.