Strategies for Working Remotely Panel Series – Sustainable Hybrid Approaches
Oct 29 @ 3:00 pm – 4:15 pm

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and need for many to transition to unplanned remote work, the IDEAS-ECP Productivity project launched the panel series Strategies for Working Remotely, which explores important topics in this area.


  • In Spring 2020 many workers abruptly transitioned from a primarily on-site to a primarily remote work experience.  Many people will be (or already are) transitioning to a hybrid experience, spending some days on site and some remote.  Working in this hybrid setting is likely to last longer for many people than the primarily remote setting.  For some, the hybrid setting may go on indefinitely. In this panel discussion, we learn from colleagues who have worked in a hybrid setting during their careers, as well as some who are new to remote work.  We will discuss some of the challenges we have faced in primarily remote settings and how these challenges might be addressed in hybrid settings. Themes will include making effective use of time on site, best practices and principles for teams who are blended remote and on site, and how to be effective and efficient in long-term hybrid settings.


  • Katie Antypas, LBL
  • David Bernholdt, ORNL
  • Mark C. Miller, LLNL
  • Hai Ah Nam, LANL
  • Valerie Taylor, ANL


  • Ashley Barker, ORNL
  • Mike Heroux, SNL
  • Elaine Raybourn, SNL
Reducing Technical Debt with Reproducible Containers
Nov 4 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

The IDEAS Productivity project, in partnership with the DOE Computing Facilities of the ALCF, OLCF, and NERSC and the DOE Exascale Computing Project (ECP) has resumed the webinar series on Best Practices for HPC Software Developers, which we began in 2016.

As part of this series, we offer one-hour webinars on topics in scientific software development and high-performance computing, approximately once a month. The October webinar is titled Reducing Technical Debt with Reproducible Containers, and will be presented by Tanu Malik (DePaul University). The webinar will take place on Wednesday, November 4, 2020 at 1:00 pm ET.


Computational experiments can be challenging to reproduce; researchers have to choose between pursuing a fast-paced research agenda and developing well-organized, sufficiently documented, and easily reproducible software. Like incurring fiscal debt, there are often tactical reasons to take on technical debt in scientific software—such as deferring documentation, organization, refactoring, and unit tests when pursuing a new idea or meeting a conference deadline. However, more often than not, researchers do not repay this technical debt, leading to irreproducible experiments.

The webinar will describe different levels of technical debt and quantify the cost of not repaying the technical debt. The presenter will introduce isolation in containers as a powerful mechanism for reducing portability debt and describe limitations of current container tools. The presenter will introduce a vision of a reproducible container that aims to automate repayment of different types of technical debt, and will describe the current state of this vision with three tools that use isolation, encapsulation, and monitoring to include necessary and sufficient content in the container—both in terms of software and data, and describe the contents of the container. Finally, the presenter will show results of using reproducible containers on domain science and HPC use cases, and provide guidance.

UPC++: An Asynchronous RMA/RPC Library for Distributed C++ Applications
Nov 10 @ 2:30 pm – 6:30 pm

UPC++: An Asynchronous RMA/RPC Library for Distributed C++ Applications

The UPC++ Team will offer a tutorial at SC20 introducing the basic concepts and advanced optimization techniques of UPC++, a C++ library supporting Partitioned Global Address Space (PGAS) programming. The tutorial will introduce the UPC++ memory and execution models and examine basic algorithm implementations. Participants will gain hands-on experience incorporating UPC++ features into several application examples. The presenters will also examine two irregular applications (metagenomic assembler and multifrontal sparse solver) and describe how they leverage UPC++ features to optimize communication performance.


  • Katherine A. Yelick (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, University of California, Berkeley)
  • Amir Kamil (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, University of Michigan)
  • Dan Bonachea (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory)
  • Paul H. Hargrove (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory)

More information about the tutorial (including registration) is available at the SC20 website.