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MATCH Engagements

Find out about the ACCESS MATCH Engagements and if you want to get involved use the “I’m interested” button on recruiting engagements.

Run Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) in Parallel for Evolutionary Study
Texas Tech University

<p>My ongoing project is focused on using species trait value (as data matrices) and its corresponding phylogenetic relationship (as a distance matrix) to reconstruct the evolutionary history of the smoke-induced seed germination trait. The results of this project are expected to increase the predictability of which untested species could benefit from smoke treatment, which could promote germination success of native species in ecological restoration. This computational resources allocated for this project pull from the high-memory partition of our Ivy cluster of HPCC (Centos 8, Slurm 20.11, 1.5 TB memory/node, 20 core /node, 4 node). However, given that I have over 1300 species to analyze, using the maximum amount of resources to speed up the data analysis is a challenge for two reasons: (1) the ancestral state reconstruction (the evolutionary history of plant traits) needs to use the Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) in Bayesian statistics, which runs more than 10 million steps and, according to experienced evolutionary biologists, could take a traditional single core simulation up 6 months to run; and (2) my data contain over 1300 native species, with about 500 polymorphic points (phylogenetic uncertainty), which would need a large scale of random simulation to give statistical strength. For instance, if I use 100 simulations for each 500 uncertainty points, I would have 50,000 simulated trees. Based on my previous experience with simulations, I could design codes to parallel analyze 50,000 simulated trees but even with this parallelization the long run MCMC will still require 50000 cores to run for up to 6 months. Given this computational and evolutionary research challenge, my current work is focused on discovering a suitable parallelization methods for the MCMC steps. I hope to have some computational experts to discuss my project.</p>

Status: In Progress
Adapting a GEOspatial Agent-based model for Covid Transmission (GeoACT) for general use
University of California San Diego

<p>GeoACT (GEOspatial Agent-based model for Covid Transmission) is a designed to simulate a range of intervention scenarios to help schools evaluate their COVID-19 plans to prevent super-spreader events and outbreaks. It consists of several modules, which compute infection risks in classrooms and on school buses, given specific classroom layouts, student population, and school activities. The first version of the model was deployed on the Expanse (and earlier, COMET) resource at SDSC and accessed via the Apache Airavata portal ( The second version is a rewrite of the model which makes it easier to adjust to new strains, vaccines and boosters, and include detailed user-defined school schedules, school floor plans, and local community transmission rates. This version is nearing completion. We’ll use Expanse to run additional scenarios using the enhanced model and the newly added meta-analysis module. The current goal is to make the model more general so that it can be used for other health emergencies. GeoACT has been in the news, e.g.&nbsp;<a href="… San Diego Data Science Undergrads Help Keep K-12 Students COVID-Safe</a>, and&nbsp;<a href="… Supercomputers Helped Enable Safer School Reopenings</a>&nbsp; (HPCWire 2022 Editors' Choice Award)</p>

Status: In Progress
Investigation of robustness of state of the art methods for anxiety detection in real-world conditions
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

<p>I am new to ACCESS. I have a little bit of past experience running code on NCSA's Blue Waters. As a self-taught programmer, it would be interesting to learn from an experienced mentor.&nbsp;</p><p>Here's an overview of my project:</p><p>Anxiety detection is topic that is actively studied but struggles to generalize and perform outside of controlled lab environments. I propose to critically analyze state of the art detection methods to quantitatively quantify failure modes of existing applied machine learning models and introduce methods to robustify real-world challenges. The aim is to start the study by performing sensitivity analysis of existing best-performing models, then testing existing hypothesis of real-world failure of these models. We predict that this will lead us to understand more deeply why models fail and use explainability to design better in-lab experimental protocols and machine learning models that can perform better in real-world scenarios. Findings will dictate future directions that may include improving personalized health detection, careful design of experimental protocols that empower transfer learning to expand on existing reach of anxiety detection models, use explainability techniques to inform better sensing methods and hardware, and other interesting future directions.</p>

Status: Finishing Up