University of Birmingham meeting: Visualisation Workshop

The University of Birmingham hosted a Remote Visualisation Workshop earlier this week, which had an interesting variety of folk talking about interesting things.

Despite the disparity of the topics – ranging from using consumer grade Virtual Reality equipment to visualise and manipulate Molecular Dynamics simulation data (only 600 pounds! fun watching someone trying to tie a
knot in a long string peptide!), alternative methods to interact with HPC machines such as Jupyter notebook and JupyterHub, the pros and cons of various technical means to achieve or improve remote graphical access, and an overview of how visualisation fits into the scientific method – it was clear how they all had the same aim:

Reducing the friction involved in using a computer and working with it results.

The length of the list of technologies covered by the end of the day was pretty impressive and I’d say that the award for best-name-of-technology-I’ve-not-heard-of-before goes to Apache Guacamole. Technology with the most promise might go to Jupyter notebook / JupyterHub – not because I think it will replace SSH access with an interface bearing a strong resemblance to Mathematica which I was using in the 1990’s – but due to the way it provides an alternative method focused on being able to develop, collaborate and present work.

The slides for my bit are here.