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Monday, February 1, 2016

Awesome Public Datasets

CNR-ITB bioinformatics, Milan, Italy
Detroit Steve sends us a link to a list of Awesome Public Datasets. I have no idea what to do with it, but I thought it was worth mentioning on account of computers are taking over the world and I kinda figure I should try and keep tabs on what's going on.

Then I went looking for a picture to go with this post and I find this Bioinformatics research project in Italy that describes their server thusly:
CNR-ITB bioinformatics computational resources present at ITB-Milano consist of more than 700 CPU-cores, more than 270 TB of disk space and more than 1700GBs of total memory, in a dual and quadri infiniband interconnected computational clusters.
That description is from 2012. The machine is probably already obsolete. Then they I found this bloviated blob of densely packed buzzwords:
At the Bioinformatics Group of CNR-ITB we count more than 25 virtualized servers hosting the various bioinformatics projects we have running, exposing services to the outside world through the Internet. The linux-standard server-oriented KVM hypervisor was used as virtualization engine. Virtual machines are running on an experimental cloud-like architecture consisting of distributed virtualization on centralized redundant storage. This architecture provides provides redundant storage together with the possibility of migrating virtual machines on less loaded hardware nodes (which is user-initiated, for now).
It sounds technical so it might impress some people, but I'm pretty sure there is no real useful information in there. Either they have set up the machine so other people can make use of it, or they haven't. I pretty sure the people who are doing bioinformatics research don't care one whit about the buzzwords, and for the people who are actually setting up the machine, this description is next to useless.

I suspect bioinformatics is the business of identifying people from machine recognizable features: fingerprints, retina patterns, the way you walk, the way you talk, the way you move your head. So when they send a drone out to kill you it doesn't mistakenly kill somebody who just happens to look like you.

In other news Dennis's better half bought a 2 terabyte external hard drive for $60.

Update February 2, 2016. Edited to better reflect my opinion of the description of the software.

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