COMPaaS DLV User Community

October 1st, 2018 - September 30th, 2022

Categories: Applications, Data Mining, Software, User Groups, Visualization, Natural Language Processing, Deep Learning, Machine Learning, Data Science, Artificial Intelligence, High Performance Computing


The COMPaaS DLV: Composable Platform as a Service Instrument for Deep Learning & Visualization user community consists of faculty from Physics and four College of Engineering departments (Computer Science, Civil, Materials & Environmental Engineering, Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, and Electrical and Computer Engineering) - primarily run applications that are GPU-centric for compute, with significant variability in storage and networking around their data requirements.

Computer Science applications primarily focus on security, data science, computer vision and Machine Learning (ML). Security projects explore the complexity of modern web applications and the intricacies of security mechanisms that often result in flaws that expose users to significant security and privacy threats. These projects try to develop methods and tools that enable users to understand and more effectively manage retrospective privacy in the context of modern, long-lived, online archives. Composable resources were used to develop Natural Language Processing (NLP)-based domain-specific classifiers that identified data practices stated in privacy policies. Adherence of corresponding applications were then adjusted based on this ground truth.

Data-science applications have an intuitive framework that integrates state-of-the-art AI technologies with applications, workflows, smart visualizations and collaboration services to help users access, share, explore and analyze their data, whether local or remote, come to conclusions, and make decisions with greater speed, accuracy, comprehensiveness and confidence. One such project is developing and advancing tools that identify image data in biomedical literature to locate beneficial, targeted publications. This work involves training image classifiers, integrating classifiers into labeling pipelines, designing retrieval user interfaces, and identifying related visual representations.

Computer vision projects include semantic segregation and 3D human pose estimation. Researchers are developing a novel network architecture, termed DependencyNet (dependency network), for semantic segmentation. They also achieved experimental results that demonstrate an effective approach for 3D human pose estimation. Over the past two years, they found COMPaaS to be consistently stable and efficient, with result output as expected, and the group’s models achieved state-of-the-art performance on their respective benchmarks.

ML applications include frameworks for many complex real-world reinforcement learning problems, such as the coordination of autonomous vehicles, network packet delivery, and distributed logistics.

Civil, Materials & Environmental Engineering applications focus on simulation and modeling. Researchers run data-driven models on high-performance computers to develop an accurate and general neural network ML model that uses crystallographic data to study patterns of synthesizability. They also perform simulations of mass transport in alloys and ceramics. COMPaaS has been performing 1.5-10 times faster than comparable infrastructures they are familiar with. Additionally, they found our use of Jupyter Notebooks to be a significant asset.

Mechanical and Industrial Engineering researchers use COMPaaS for three research projects: feature extraction in fluid flow using a Convolutional Neural Network (CNN); column height detection in metallic nanoparticles using a CNN; and, electric vehicle battery state-of-charge estimation using different ML methods.

Electrical and Computer Engineering researchers recently started running mathematical models of ML algorithms and training language models using long-short term memory (LSTMs).

In 2020, we began implementing a GPUoE (GPU over Ethernet) prototype. Using a GPU expansion chassis connected to compute nodes over Ethernet, we were able to compose remote GPUs into our existing composable infrastructure. Our APIs developed for composable infrastructure have been extended to support these remote GPUs.

In 2021, we enhanced COMPaaS with a public-facing JupyterHub server providing secure web-based access to experiments, a modern PCIe fabric and a supporting expansion chassis, thereby making composable co-location available to our users. As familiarity with composable infrastructure grows, the idea of using composable co-location instead of traditional servers co-located in racks is possible. By composable co-location, we mean the integration of emerging hardware needs without changing the existing core infrastructure. Researchers can now co-locate their own accelerators or compute nodes and leverage existing COMPaaS resources natively.