CoLab Technologies

The SFU CoLab project is focused on scientific visualization, advanced publishing and distributed learning applications in mathematics.

An environment rich in high-quality collaborative tools is indispensible to CoLab's research. Components central to the architecture of CoLab are large interactive plasma displays. CoLab is also equipped with other advanced input devices to enable new kinds of interactions with computers. CoLab supports both conventional and wireless networking, allowing researchers to explore how users with varying levels of connectivity research, learn or teach.

Computer infrastructure is being put in place to support the displays and input devices. A state-of-the-art annotation system will be used to edit, analyze and enrich video collaborations.

CoLab is working jointly with other large-scale projects, HPC@SFU and WestGrid (see SFU media release), and the New Media Innovation Centre, to bring high performance computing and GridRoom technologies to the laboratory.

The project HPC@SFU consists of three computing architectures:

  • A pre-existing 8 processor Silicon Graphics Origin 2000.
  • A 32 processor, 8 x 4way (ES40), Alpha system that has a Compaq proprietary "Memory Channel" interconnect.
  • A 192 processor, 96 x dual (AMD Athlon MP), system that uses bonded 100Mbps Ethernet (3 channels = 300Mbps, fdx). This system is has been benchmarked with a peak performance of 144GFlops. It is expected to expand.