News from the Globus Alliance

FOR IMMEDIATE USE

GLOBUS ALLIANCE ESTABLISHED AS INTERNATIONAL CONSORTIUM TO ADVANCE GLOBUS GRID SOFTWARE

Argonne, the Information Sciences Institute and the University of Chicago are joined by the University of Edinburgh and the Swedish Royal Institute of Technology

CHICAGO, September 2, 2003 -- By adding members from Scotland and Sweden, the Globus Project today transformed itself into the “Globus Alliance. ”  Like the original Globus Project, the Globus Alliance is a tightly integrated consortium dedicated to collaborative design, development, testing, and support of the open source Globus Toolkit®, the de facto standard Grid software.

 The Globus Project was established in 1995 by the U.S. Argonne National Laboratory, the University of Southern California's Information Sciences Institute (ISI) and the University of Chicago (UofC). New Globus Alliance partners are the University of Edinburgh in Scotland and the Swedish Center for Parallel Computers (PDC), which contribute database-integration and security expertise, respectively.  In addition, a new Academic Affiliates program with participation from Asia-Pacific, Europe, and the U.S. recognizes major contributions to the Globus Toolkit by key members of the academic and research communities, which gain a formal voice in Globus Alliance governance with the creation of a new advisory council.

“We are delighted to announce this transition to the Globus Alliance, with its two new partners and Affiliates program,” said Ian Foster, member of the new Globus Alliance governing board, associate director of Argonne’s Mathematics and Computer Science division and professor in the UofC Computer Science department. “The Edinburgh Parallel Computing Center (EPCC)and PDC provide a much-needed European dimension to the Globus virtual organization.  This important step recognizes the international scope of the Globus community, brings exciting new technical capabilities, and expands the set of people who, like us, live and breathe Globus technologies. ”

The Globus Toolkit provides key enabling software and services that let people share computing power, databases, and other tools securely online across corporate, institutional, and geographic boundaries without sacrificing local autonomy. It has been deployed broadly worldwide for both science and industry and has developed a strong community of contributors and users.

The Globus Alliance’s new governing board is structured to continue this tradition of community engagement and careful design.  In addition to Foster, members include Malcolm Atkinson and Mark Parsons of Edinburgh and Olle Mulmo and Lennart Johnsson at PDC, who join longtime Globus participants Carl Kesselman and Karl Czajkowski of ISI and Steven Tuecke of Argonne. This board takes on ultimate responsibility for Globus Toolkit design and governance.>

EPCC developers and staff from the National e-Science Centre at Edinburgh play a leading role in the Global Grid Forum Database Access and Integration Services (DAIS) working group that is writing specifications for this important Grid area. EPCC are the primary implementers of a reference implementation, OGSA-DAI, work funded by the UK e-Science Grid Core Programme. Founded in 1990, and with more than 60 staff, EPCC has a long history of working with industry and public bodies in collaborative projects at the leading edge of computational research and development.

“The Globus Alliance is an excellent development, allowing us to build on Edinburgh’s existing collaboration with the Globus team,” said Professor Atkinson, director of the National e-Science Centre and chief architect of the OGSA-DAI Project. “The Alliance’s combined skills will significantly enhance our capacity to design, develop and deploy this vital distributed system infrastructure. We are happy to share responsibility for future progress of the Globus Toolkit.”

Founded in 1989, PDC is the main centre for high-performance computing and visualization for the Swedish academic community. It has a record of successful early adoption of new technology for high-end users and extensive experience in developing and deploying security solutions and system administration tools in open environments, and a record of successful contributions to the Open Source community. It co-founded the European Grid Support Centre and the Nordic Grid Consortium, and is an active body in the European grid research community.

“The Globus Alliance builds on the world wide success of the Globus project and provides improved opportunities for regional and local influence on requirements and solutions for common Grid software components,” said Lennart Johnsson, director of PDC and Professor of Numerical Analysis and Computer Science at the Royal Institute of Technology. “We are convinced that the Globus Alliance effort will improve the development of the Globus Toolkit, and allow for richer feature sets.”

U.S. partners in the Globus Alliance continue to be funded by federal sponsors such as the Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation, NASA and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Industry sponsors include IBM and Microsoft Research.

“The interest and use of Grids has grown dramatically over the past two years” said Carl Kesselman, director of the Center for Grid Technology at ISI. “The time is right to expand the partnership to embrace new expertise and to advance Globus as a responsive, high-quality open source community for Grid infrastructure.”

The new Globus Academic Affiliates program recognizes major contributions to the Globus Toolkit by other organizations, as contributors or users. The first affiliates are, in Europe, CERN of Switzerland, the lead partner of the EU DataGrid project, the Poznan Supercomputing and Networking Center of Poland, the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute) of Germany, and Imperial College of the UK; in Asia Pacific, Monash University in Australia, Tokyo Institute of Technology, and the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology’s Grid Technology and Research Center in Japan; and in the U.S., the University of Wisconsin’s Condor group, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the National Center for Supercomputing Applications, the San Diego Supercomputer Center, the Texas Advanced Computing Center at the University of Texas, Indiana University, Northern Illinois University, Louisiana State University, and the University of California at Santa Barbara.

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For more information, see http://www-unix.globus.org.

U.S. press contact:          
Tom Garritano      garritano@mcs.anl.gov           630-252-7641

UK press contact:            
Mark Parsons      m.parsons@epcc.ed.ac.uk     +44 7770 832 570

Sweden press contact:     
Per Öster            per@pdc.kth.se                     +46 8 790 6261