NC BioGrid Request for Proposals
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Request For Proposals from "Friendly Power Users"

The NC BioGrid is looking for "friendly power users" to work collaboratively with us. We intend to select a few (at first 1-2 per Triangle Univ. campus) who have research problems which will serve as good tests for the operation and further development of our grid. These problems should be large enough that the speedup of the grid (vs. the usual desktop or lab machines) can be studied, but not so large as to interfere with testing and developing the grid.

The users will need to be tolerant of a testing/R&D computing environment (hence "friendly") and also be willing to work (at least for a while) in a "command line" environment (hence "power user".) There will be a modest amount of user support available from the grid project cooperators, but the friendly power users will have to be actively involved in entering their computations, helping us to understand their computer "work flow" procedures, and in helping assess performance and the correctness of the results.

We'd like 3-4 candidates per campus, to try to select one per campus at first (and more as the process develops.) We'd be happy to do a presentation Q&A on your campus at the beginning.

Proposals should be no longer than the equivalent of 2 typed single space pages, and should be in plain text format ("ascii with line breaks"). Questions and comments can also be sent to that address. Our plan is to notify proposers of their selection status within 30 days of submission.

Criteria to be used in evaluating the suitability of proposed problems.

  1. Running time on existing computer system(s) 2-7 days
  2. The problem should have a parallelizeable nature which lends itself to a grid architecture.
  3. Binaries are needed for our systems (We use linux, Solaris, AIX. At least 2 are mandatory, with 3 strongly preferred.) Open source preferable, license-free is preferable - or will collaborate with software vendors
  4. Data - open or license allowing us to freely use it - size no more than a few gigabytes (less than 5 gigs)
  5. Willingness -
    • to share existing work flow with us (so we can assess suitability for evaluating the biogrid and also for projecting future portal requirements)
    • to share existing computational performance with us (so we can compare the performance on the grid)
    • to share problem preparation tasks with us, including setting up the "work flow"
    • to share performance results with us and let it be shared publically
    • to compare results between old and grid