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OGF Monthly Newsletter
January 2007
A look at Past Accomplishments and A Preview of Coming Attractions

Headline News - JSDL Adoption Q&A
LAST CHANCE to take our member survey!
New Document Published
Event Review - Management Developers Conference
Upcoming Events
Individual Members - Activate your 2007 Membership

Headline News - Job Submission Data Language (JSDL) Adoption
Q&A with Stephen McGough, JSDL WG Co-Chair

Why is the JSDL recommendation important and to who?

There are many languages used within the Grid to specify the submission of jobs, which in itself is a big problem. If a user (or developer) wishes to submit a job to a resource or set of resources then they need to know the language that resource requires. Preparing and maintaining job submission documents for each resource may work in the small scale---users submitting to one or two different types of systems. This approach clearly does not scale even with the help of tooling and in-line translators. A common language which all systems support, or can easily map their native language to, simplifies the problem as any client can submit jobs to any system.

A common language also facilitates automated interactions between various entities on the grid---job management systems, brokers, schedulers, etc. Such entities may refine or transform an initial job submission document to provide information not available to the initial job submitter but required for successful execution.

Do you have any specific examples of adoption of the recommendation?

There are many groups and organizations which are adopting JSDL. The list below is the current set based on those that have informed us.

  • Business Grid
  • Grid Programming Environment (GPE)
  • GridSAM
  • HPC-Europa
  • Market for Computational Services
  • UniGrids
The following groups also said they are or will be implementing JSDL:
  • Askalon
  • GridBus Project (in GridBus 3.0)
  • gridMatrix (Cadence)
  • Nordugrid
  • OpenDSP (announcement, coverage)
The JSDL-WG maintains a list of adopters on the JSDL-WG gridforge wiki:

What are the key benefits that some of these adopters are reporting?

There are two kinds of adopters: client and server. In the case of the client, the most significant benefit is that they are no longer required to learn or implement a number of incompatible job submission languages and now need only to learn one standard language. For the service provider the advantage is that more clients are writing job descriptions in a manner that they can support.

Have you learned any unexpected lessons along the way?

We have found that people want to use JSDL in ways that we did not expect. Different groups have adopted the language for different, sometimes contradictory, reasons, even when it did not fulfill all their needs. This has shown to us that there is clearly a need for, and desire to adopt, common grid standards. It also has shown that there is no way (and no need) to satisfy everyone with a 1.0 release as long as there is sufficient functionality and extensibility.

Once a specification seems to be gaining adoption and popularity, groups that did not contribute to it may also seek to join in. Since they did not contribute to the initial version they may propose and seek dramatic changes for future versions. It is important to keep the door open and allow increased participation and new ideas even though it may sometimes be disruptive. It is always more fun to start from a clean slate but a WG that has already published a specification has to consider also the adopters of previous versions. It is important therefore to think also of specification evolution and how to handle compatibility requirements between different versions.

What are your future plans for the recommendation?

The current work plan is for an errata release with possibly minor, and compatible, revisions to the schema for JSDL version 1.1. This minor release is expected to be available by OGF19. The WG is also working on a number of extensions that may be published separately or merged in with the next version of the specification. We are also planning and have started exploratory work on the next major version (JSDL 2.0).

LAST CHANCE to Take Our Member Survey!
All OGF members and active participants are urged to spend 5 minutes to take our on-line member survey. Results will be used to improve our member services and help guide our strategy. We will publish the results for viewing by the entire community in January. The survey is completely anonymous. http://www.zoomerang.com/survey.zgi?p=WEB225WPEGUMR4

New Document Published GFD.084 - Standardised Namespaces for XML infosets in OGF
Many of the documents produced in OGF are specifications to standardise Grid Computing. Therefore, every Working Group and Research Group faces the problem of structuring the namespace IRI for their particular area of interest. Recurring patterns of identification within a larger organisational domain (commonly known as "Corporate Identity" in the commercial world) greatly improves communication and recognition both internal and external to an organization. This document defines a small part of a greater "Grid Community Identity" by standardising the way in which constituted OGF groups organise their associated namespaces. Congratulations to Michel Drescher, Fujitsu and Ali Anjomshoaa, EPCC!

Event Review - Management Developers Conference
Several representatives of the Open Grid Forum (OGF) attended this year's Management Developers Conference (MDC) http://mandevcon.com/ in Santa Clara, California this past December. This event is sponsored in part by the Distributed Management Task Force (DTMF), a member of the OGF's SCRM-WG http://www.ogf.org/gf/group_info/view.php?group=scrm-wg.

Approximately 300 conference attendees representing more than 50 countries contributed to the huge success of the industry's only developer conference dedicated to standards based system and network management technologies. Ellen Stokes, Management Area Director and Fred Maciel led a session on behalf of the OGSA Resource Management Design Team. OGF was also represented by Hiro Kishimoto, co-chair of the OGSA-WG and At-Large Board Member; and Tom Roney, OGF/DMTF Liaison.

Upcoming Events
OGF19 Chapel Hill, North Carolina January 29 - February 2, 2007
Program will include a full slate of chartered group sessions, 2 days of eScience workshops, Enterprise sessions, and more. The program schedule is now available at http://www.ogf.org/gf/event_schedule/?event_id=6
Register by January 19 and save up to $100 off the on-site rate.
OGF20 Manchester, U.K. May 7-11, 2007
Save these dates! OGF20, co-located with EGEE's 2nd User Forum and hosted by UK e-Science and the University of Manchester, will be the premier grid technologies event of 2007.

Individual Members - Activate your 2007 Membership
Please remember to activate your 2007 membership. The fee is $195 and registered members will receive a $100 discount to all 2007 OGF events. Individuals who are not employed by OGF organizational members may join OGF at http://www.regonline.com/112287. Individuals that registered under the 2006 program are requested to reregister for 2007 at a reduced 2007 annual fee of $100. Your 2006 member number will be required to obtain this discount.

The success of OGF depends upon member participation. All of the significant events, activities and accomplishments of the forum are member driven. Please contact any OGF staff member if you want to get involved. We welcome your input!







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