Building a cluster

My office is cluttered with computer components. I am teaching with Dr. Antonio Rago a course called “Mathematical Programming” for second year students on our degree: Mathematics with High Performance Computing.

We teach the students using a language called python. In the first third of the course we use the trinket system.

As part of the module Dr. Rago is teaching the students to build a 8 node cluster and the basics of system administration of a linux system. The small computers in the box will be cabled together to form the cluster. It is essential to getting high performance out of parallel computer to understand some of the hardware issues.


Talk at a conference on on good practice in teaching in mathematics

Dr David Graham recently presented a talk at the CETL-MSOR Conference 2016 at Loughborough University. The aim of the conference was to promote, explore and disseminate emerging good practice and research findings in Mathematics, Statistics and Operational Research (MSOR) teaching, learning, assessment and support.

The title of the talk was:  Immersion: Therapy?
The talk was about the student views on the new immersive module in the first year. The module is first one taken by the students. It is called “Mathematical Reasoning”. The module is immersive in the sense that the students only take this module for the first four weeks of the first semester.


Graduation day for mathematics undergraduates at Plymouth University

Monday was the graduation day for the final year students on the different mathematical undergraduate degrees that our school teaches. The event is held on the beautiful  Plymouth Hoe.


Although the sky was overcast, there was no rain.  There are few more pictures on the facebook page for international students.

In total  64 students graduated this year. There were 21 students who obtained a first class degree and 17 students obtained a 2.1 class degree.

We wish our graduating students well in their future careers.






Lecture capture

It is increasingly a digital world, where things like the BBC Iplayer allow viewers to watch a show at a time convenient to them. In education, many people expect to be able to record the lectures. This lectures to be reviewed afterwards. For example, if a student is trying to solve a problem, it can help to review the part of the lecture where the solution to a similar problem was worked.

Plymouth University has recently installed the Panopto lecture capture system in many teaching rooms. See here for some information.
We have also used the system to record


Dirac day

The physicists who do research into lattice QCD typically need access to large supercomputers. In the UK, the supercomputer resources are in provided for by Dirac (Distributed Research Utilizing Advanced Computing). Researchers at Plymouth use resources at Edinburgh and Cambridge.

Next Thursday is Dirac day, where the majority of users of Dirac come together for a day of talks. From CMS Craig McNeile and Nicolas Garron are attending the day. Nicolas is reviewing the results obtained on Dirac by UK researchers in lattice QCD.



Extreme QCD conference at Plymouth University

Next week the lattice field theory group at Plymouth University are organizing an international conference called Extreme QCD.       The theme of the conference is nuclear physics (and related theories) under extreme conditions, such as high temperature and density. There are approximately 80 people from around the world coming to Plymouth to discuss the latest developments in extreme QCD.