Valerie Barr

Computer Science Dept.
Mount Holyoke College
South Hadley, MA 01075

phone: +1 413 538 3644

office: Clapp 222A
office hours: Please email for an appointment.

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A Six-College Consortium:
"High Performance Computing at Liberal Arts Colleges"

Introduction to the Grant

Workshop 1

Workshop 2

Workshop 3

Workshop 4

White Paper (at Teagle Foundation site)

How to participate in this project


Links to relevant HPC and related sites


Six upstate New York schools (Bard, Colgate, Hamilton, Skidmore, Union, and Vassar colleges) have received a one-year $40K grant from the Teagle Foundation in order to explore high performance computing in the liberal arts setting. Specifically, we are interested in identifying research opportunities that can make use of high performance computing capabilities (some of which may already be underway on our campuses) as well as determining the best way in which to make such capabilities available to faculty on our campuses.

We will hold four workshops during 2009 with the goal of articulating current and near-term need for high performance computing at our institutions and suggesting preferred mechanisms for providing such facilities. In addition to workshop reports, we will generate a white paper that will be available outside our institutions so that other campuses can benefit from this effort as well.

The four workshops address the following issues:

  1. What do we mean by "High Performance Computing"?

  2. Applications of HPC to humanities and social science disciplines.

  3. Applications of HPC to science and engineering disciplines.

  4. How much access to HPC capabilities do we need and how should we get it?

Workshop 1

Workshop 1, held on April 7, 2009, addressed the question of what we mean by "High Performance Computing". It included the following presentations:

Workshop 1 summary report
Workshop 2

Workshop 2, held on September 29, 2009, addressed applications of high performance computing to the humanities and social sciences. It included the following presentations:

Workshop 2 summary report
Workshop 3

Workshop 3 was held on October 27, 2009. The focus was on applications of HPC to science and engineering. Speakers included:

Workshop 3 summary report
Workshop 4

This workshop was held on December 1, 2009. It focused on synthesizing the material from the first three workshops and developing recommendations for how liberal arts colleges should best get access to HPC capabilities.

Workshop 4 summary report

How can you participate in this project?

Our white paper will soon be available from the Teagle Foundation web site.

For more information:

Contact Valerie Barr, 518-388-8361.

Links to relevant HPC and related sites

Molecular Education and Research Consortium in Undergraduate computational Chemistry (MERCURY)

NEH Office of Digital Humanities

Digging Into Data Challenge

Institute for Computing in Humanities, Arts, and Social Science (ICHASS)

Humanities, Arts, Science, and Technology Advanced Collaboratory (HASTAC)

Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities

MATRIX Center for Humane Arts, Letters, & Social Sciences Online




Center for Computational Research, University at Buffalo

College of Nanoscale Science & Engineering, University at Albany

Computational Center for Nanotechnology Innovation, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

TeraGrid, and the TeraGrid Campus Champions program


Condor High Throughput Computing

BOINC Open-source software for volunteer computing and grid computing.