September 2013

In this issue:

  • eResearch Australasia 2013 – Update!
  • Minister Carr launches NCI facilities
  • CAUDIT & RDSI launches VePa Tube
  • Big Data Big Impact Award from Cancer Institute NSW
  • eResearch Australasia 2013 – Featured speakers
  • RDSI Stories
  • About this newsletter

eResearch Australasia 2013 – Update

The conference will be held on 20 to 25 October at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.  eResearch focuses on technological platforms that enhance the researchers’ ability to generate, collect, share, analyse, store and retrieve information.

This year we introduce the new eResearch Solutions Showcase. The showcase will focus on how researchers are using infrastructure funding and technological advancements to further their research. A Call For Showcase Participation (CFSP) will be made in the coming weeks. We encourage eResearchers to participate!

Don’t miss out the Research Impact Day on Tuesday which will discuss how government funded investments on research infrastructure has supported researchers to achieve their research goals, and the success of those investments.

Our favourite panel session this year has a twist. The eResearch Panel will be discussing ‘Research impact of eResearch infrastructure – What worked and what hasn’t’.  The panel will be chaired by Dr Nick Tate and Participants will include Prof Mark Ragan, Prof Deb Verhoeven, Prof Jeremy VanDerWal, Prof Graham Galloway and Prof Tom Cochrane.

Panelists include [add names]

To register, please visit:

For enquiries please email:

Minister Carr launches NCI facilities

Senator the Hon Kim Carr, Minister for Science and Research officially opened the NCI climate HPC centre on Wednesday 31 July.

“This leap in computing power will give our researchers insights and solutions to problems at a rate far quicker than previously possible,” he said, “It keeps Australia at the forefront of global innovation and opens up new horizons for science and research.

Dr Rob Vertessy, BoM CEO stated that “advanced computational methods form an increasingly essential component of high-impact research, in many cases underpinning discoveries that cannot be achieved by other means.”

Predicting extreme weather, which Australia frequently experiences, required millions of lines of code and complex information to be processed in an instant, said Professor Andy Pitman, Director of CeECSS.

“You cannot do that on your home computer, you need a seriously large system in order to do that kind of processing,” he said. “And fortunately we now have one of those.”

Read more on the new NCI website:

CAUDIT & RDSI launches VePa Tube

CAUDIT and RDSI have introduced a VePa YouTube channel which aims to highlight how vendor offerings can provide solutions for different customer environments. Customers who are able to take advantage of the Vendor Panel can watch vendor videos, learn about vendor projects, and acquire a better understanding of vendor solutions offered to RDSI Nodes and the higher education sector.

Vendor videos may cover topics such as Storage, Networking, Compute, Security, Physical infrastructure, Middleware, Applications, On Premise/Cloud, Security, and Identity and Access Management.

This channel will grow and evolve as vendors continue to submit content so stay tuned.

To view the VePa channel, please visit:

A vendor contact list is available from:

Big Data Big Impact Award from Cancer Institute NSW

The inaugural Big Data Big Impact award was presented to Dr Jason Wong, Dr Luke Hesson and Intersect’s Dr Joe Thurbon at the 2013 Premier’s Awards for Outstanding Cancer Research by NSW Chief Scientist Professor Mary O’Kane.

The successful team from UNSW and Intersect will work on a project entitled ‘Exploring the Dark Matter of Cancer Genomes’. Co-funded by the Cancer Institute NSW, the NSW Office of the Chief Scientist, the Office of Health and Medical Research and Dimension Data, the grant will support the analysis of publicly available datasets to unlock answers to frontier questions in cancer research.

As a partner on the grant Intersect will provide a data analysis pipeline, HPC facilities, research data storage, a mirror of the Cancer Genome Atlas, an HPC specialist and CI Dr Joe Thurbon.

eResearch Australasia 2013 – Featured speakers

eResearch Australasia is proud to announce we have confirmed the following outstanding speakers:

  • Peter Nikoletatos:  Chief Information Officer of The Australian National University and has more than 25 years experience in the Information and Communication Technology industry in Australia and overseas.
  • Izak Janse van Rensburg:  Executive Director: Information and Communication Technology Services (ICTS), University of Cape Town.  Izak (Sakkie) Janse van Rensburg has a strong track record of developing ICT strategies in the higher-education sector and of aligning these with the university’s systems.
  • Dr Mustapha Mokrane:  Executive Director of the ICSU-WDS International Programme Office.   His scientific background covers genetics and bioinformatics and has developed a strong interest in scientific data and information challenges.
  • Prof Mark Ragan:  Professor and founding Head of the Division of Genomics & Computational Biology at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience, and Professor in the School of Information Technology & Electrical Engineering, both at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia.  Mr Ragan will present ‘Biology in the world of data’
  • Dr Rahul Ramachandran:  Principal Research Scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville.  His research focuses on Earth Science Informatics. This emerging field looks at the application of computational methods and information technology to the acquisition, storage, processing, interchange, analysis and visualization of Earth Science data and information.
  • Prof Deb Verhoeven:  Professor and Chair of Media and Communication at Deakin University. Until recently she held the role of Director of the AFI Research Collection at RMIT. A writer, broadcaster, film critic and commentator, Verhoeven is the author of more than 30 journal articles and book chapters.

For more information on featured speakers, please visit:

RDSI Stories

RDSI has published yet another story that highlights how researchers around Australia are benefiting from the new RDSI Node infrastructure.

The history of a data collection

In June 1960, Alex Mitchell and Arthur Delbridge sent a copy of the following letter to the Principal of every high school in Australia.

Department of English
University of Sydney
June 1960

We are carrying out a piece of research by which we hope to discover with some precision the pattern of speech variation in Australia. We are also hoping to find out what the answer might be to questions such as these:

  • Are there any regional variations in Australia?
  • Do variations in speech habits correspond with social status and home background?

Our aim is to assemble a body of spontaneous speech from an unselected sample of pupils of equivalent age and educational grading and from every high school in Australia. We are anxious to have samples of speech from pupils in the fifth (or final) year of every high school in Australia.

The Mitchell and Delbridge collection is just one of a large number of speech recordings, music recordings, and texts that will be stored on the Intersect RDSI Node as part of the Human Communication Science (HCS) collections.

To read the full story, please visit:

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