Skip to main content

e-Science and Industry

AHM2007 saw several examples of the industrial exploitation of e-Science technologies. I organised a session on this theme for Grid Computing Now! (GCN), which was attended by some 300 people. Jim Austin and Yike Guo gave talks about their contrasting approaches to commercialising their research.

Jim has built his company, Cybula, from income, opting for the advantage of control and accepting slower growth. Yike has chosen an investment-based approach for Inforsense, achieving the fast growth required by his funders. Both explained how they found markets for their technologies. They also reflected on how to maintain both academic and commercial careers, using each to benefit the other while balancing their sometimes contrasting demands.

I followed with a short talk that gave a high-level outline of the state of advanced IT infrastructure in industry, drawing on some of the presentations given our Grids Mean Business track at OGF20. Of course, IT infrastructure is only one aspect of e-Science; there are also application-level advances that are suitable for take-up by industry.

Later in the week, Thomas Hartkens of Ixico presented their experience of exploiting e-Science infrastructure. Derek Hill had given an excellent contribution to a GCN webinar about their business case earlier back in March. In contrast, Thomas focussed more on the management details, particularly the quality management required to meet regulatory approval in medical informatics. This level of project management is new to many academics, so this talk was very informative for anyone considering taking the plunge into the commercial world.

AHM2007 also had many demonstrations of e-science projects that involve industrial partners. On our stand, which was one out of many, we hosted demos from 6 of the collaborative R&D projects on inter-enterprise computing funded by the Technology Strategy Board.

In summary, there are many good links between parts of the e-Science community and some companies. One of our tasks at GCN is to encourage more of these successes.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

2016 has been a good year

So much has happened over the last year with our Enterprise Architecture practice that it's hard to write a succinct summary.  For my day-to-day experience as enterprise architect, the biggest change is that I now have a team to work with.  This time last year, I was in the middle of a 12-month secondment to create the EA practice, working mainly on my own.  Now my post has been made permanent and I have recruited two members of staff to help meet the University's architectural needs.

I have spent a lot of the year meeting people, listening to their concerns and explaining how architecture can help them.  This communication remains vital, the absolute core of what we do and we will continue to meet people in this way.  We also talk to people in other Universities in order to learn from what they are doing and to share our own experience back.  A highlight in this regard was my trip to the USA last January.

Our biggest deliverable for the past year was the design of the data wa…

A new EA Repository

One of my goals since starting this job two years ago has always been to create a repository for architecture documents.  The idea is to have a central store where people can find information about the University's applications, data sources, business processes, and other architectural information.  This store will make it easier for us to explain our plans, to show the current state of the University's information systems, and to explain what Enterprise Architecture is all about.

It's taken a long time to reach this goal, mainly because we're often had more pressing and immediate work to be done.  The creation of a repository is one of those tasks that is very important but never quite urgent.  So I'm now very happy to say that we are in the process of deploying a repository and modelling tool.


This is the culmination of a careful process to select the most appropriate tool for our needs.  We began by organising several workshops to gather requirements from a rang…

A brief summary of our major initiatives

I notice that in 2016 I wrote 34 posts on this blog.  This is only my fifth post in 2017 and we're already three-quarters of the way through the year.  Either I've suddenly got lazier, or else I've had less time to spend writing here.  As I'm not inclined to think of myself as especially lazy, I'm plumping for the latter explanation.

There really is a lot going on.  The University has several major initiatives under way, many of which need input from the Enterprise Architecture section.

The Service Excellence programme is overhauling (the buzzword is "transforming") our administrative processes for HR, Finance, and Student Administration.  Linked to this is a programme to procure an integrated ERP system to replace the adminstrative IT systems. 

Enabling Digital Transformation is a programme to put the middleware and architecture in place so that we can make our processes "digital first".  We're implementing an API framework, a notification…