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Reaching for Sky Computing.

International Science Grid This Week (11/10/10) Miriam Boon

Researchers are developing tools to combine independent cloud computing environments to form an architectural concept dubbed sky computing by researchers at the Universities of Chicago (UC) and Florida in a recent paper. “[In the paper] we talked about standards and cloud markets and various mechanics that might lead to sky computing over multiple clouds, and then that idea was picked up by many projects,” says UC’s Kate Keahey. Inspired by the paper, the Universite de Rennes 1’s Pierre Riteau contacted Keahey to explore the sky computing concept further. The researchers used Grid’5000 and FutureGrid, two cyberinfrastructure platforms for large-scale parallel and distributed computing research, to create a heterogeneous environment for testing the sky computing concept. “The biggest challenge was being able to make it go to a large scale, because when you switch from about 30 machines to 1,000, you have a lot of issues that appear, and for this we had to improve some parts of the system,” Riteau says. “The fact is that cloud computing created new patterns, and we are having to figure out now how to build tools that will take advantage of those patterns,” Keahey says.

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