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Showing posts from December, 2010

ParaView, VTK files and endianness

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Recently, I've been doing some work with ParaView, a rather nice open-source visualization application that's aimed at the display and analysis of large data sets. It has a wide range of visualization functionality, an interface that allows for interaction via its graphical user interface, or through scripting, and a distributed architecture. Executable versions are available for a variety of platforms, or you can download the source and compile it yourself. I'm currently running the Windows 64bit distribution on my laptop, and have also been building the source on HECToR, with a view to trying the application out on that machine, and using it for the analysis of some of the large data sets generated there.ParaView uses the open-source Visualization Toolkit (VTK) for data processing and rendering; this consists of a core C++ class library and interpreted interface layers for Tcl/Tk, Java and Python. Much of VTK's functionality - specifically, its visualization techn…

Half-way through HECToR

HECToR, the UK national supercomputer service, had its third birthday in October. NAG, as many readers will know, provides the Computational Science and Engineering (CSE) support for the service, helping users with application problems, and with porting and tuning their codes to make them as efficient as possible. We also provide an extensive programme of training courses throughout the UK covering both basic and advanced topics. To date we have had over 900 attendees on these courses and delivered them in 16 locations. We are currently putting together our programme for next year, upgrading our course materials in response to the latest hardware upgrade (from a Cray XT6 to an XE6), and developing material for some new topics that we haven't addressed before. A novel aspect of the HECToR service is the Distributed CSE Service (DCSE) which funds dedicated resources to work on specific codes. Those resources can come from within the research community itself, or from specialis…