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John Shalf

computer scientist: National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC)

Jon Bashor,, 510-486-5849

Dan Krotz,, 510-486-4019


John Shalf heads the Computer and Data Sciences Department in the Berkeley Lab's Computational Research Division, which tries to understand the scientific computing workload to build a better architecture for future supercomputers.

John’s background is in electrical engineering, and he got his start in high performance computing (HPC) at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) in 1994, where he provided software engineering support for a number of scientific applications groups.

He has authored more than 60 publications in the field of software frameworks and HPC technology, and has been recognized with three best papers and one R&D 100 award.

He can be contacted to speak about general trends in computing, supercomputing, parallel programming languages, graphic processing units (GPUs) and cloud computing.

Recent research

Recent Publications

  • Lavanya Ramakrishnan, Keith R. Jackson, Shane Canon, Shreyas Cholia, John Shalf: “Defining future platform requirements for e-Science clouds.” SoCC 2010: 101-106
  • S. Kamil, C. Chan, L. Oliker, J. Shalf, S. Williams"An Auto-Tuning Framework for Parallel Multicore Stencil Computations", International Parallel & Distributed Processing Symposium (IPDPS) 2010, (2010)
  • A. Uselton, M. Howison, N. Wright, D. Skinner, N. Keen, J. Shalf, K. Karavanic, L. Oliker"Parallel I/O Performance: From Events to Ensembles ", International Parallel & Distributed Processing Symposium (IPDPS) 2010
  • K. Madduri, S. Williams, S. Ethier, L. Oliker, J. Shalf, E. Strohmaier, K. Yelick, "Memory-Efficient Optimization of Gyrokinetic Particle-to-Grid Interpolation for Multicore Processors: SC09: International Conference for High-Performance Computing, Networking, Storage, and Analysis, Nov, 2009.
  • M. Mohiyuddin, M. Murphy, S. Williams, L. Oliker, J. Shalf, J. Wawrzynek"A Case for Hardware/Software Co-Tuning for Power Efficient Scientific Computing", SC09: International Conference for High-Performance Computing, Networking, Storage, and Analysis, Nov, 2009.
  • K. Datta, S. Williams, V. Volkov, J. Carter, L. Oliker, J. Shalf, K. Yelick"Auto-tuning the 27-point Stencil for Multicore", international Workshop on Automatic Performance Tuning (iWAPT), 2009.
  • Shoaib Kamil, Leonid Oliker, Ali Pinar, John Shalf: Communication Requirements and Interconnect Optimization for High-End Scientific Applications. IEEE Trans. Parallel Distrib. Syst. 21(2): 188-202 (2010)
  • Gilbert Hendry, Shoaib Kamil, Aleksandr Biberman, Johnnie Chan, Benjamin G. Lee, Marghoob Mohiyuddin, Ankit Jain, Keren Bergman, Luca P. Carloni, John Kubiatowicz, Leonid Oliker, John Shalf: Analysis of photonic networks for a chip multiprocessor using scientific applications. NOCS 2009: 104-113

Awards and Memberships

  • Best Paper Award
    Keith R. Jackson, Lavanya Ramakrishnan, Krishna Muriki, Shane Canon, Shreyas Cholia, John Shalf Harvey J. Wasserman, and Nicholas J. Wright, "Performance Analysis of High Performance Computing Applications on the Amazon Web Services Cloud, " IEEE International Conference on Cloud Computing Technology and Science (CloudCom 2010), Bloomington, Ind., Nov. 30-Dec.1, 2010.
  • Best Paper Award 
    Shoaib Kamil, Cy Chan, Samuel Williams, Lenny Oliker, John Shalf, Mark Howison, E. Wes Bethel, Prabhat,  “A Generalized Framework for Auto-tuning Stencil Computations, ” Cray User Group Conference, Atlanta, GA, May 2009 [pdf]
  • Best Paper Award 
    Samuel Williams, Jonathan Carter, Leonid Oliker, John Shalf and Katherine Yelick,  “Lattice Boltzmann Simulation Optimization on Leading Multicore Platforms, ” IEEE International Parallel and Distributed Processing Symposium (IPDPS’08), Miami, Fla., April 2008.
  • Best paper application track
    Lenny Oliker, Andrew Canning, Jonathan Carter, Costin Iancu, Michael Lijewski, S. Kamil, John Shalf, Hong Shan, Erich Strohmaier,  S. Ethier, T. Goodale, ”Scientific Application Performance on Candidate PetaScale Platforms, ” 21st International Parallel & Distributed Processing Symposium (IPDPS) 2007, Long Beach, Calif., April 2007. [pdf]
  • Highest ranked conference paper
    Samuel Williams, John Shalf, Lenny Oliker, Parry Husbands, Shoaib Kamil and Katherine Yelick,  “The Potential of the Cell Processor for Scientific Computing, ” ACM International Conference on Computing Frontiers, Ischia, Italy, May 2006. [pdf] 
  • Highest ranked conference paper
    Jonathan Carter, Lenny Oliker and John Shalf,  “Performance Evaluation of Scientific Applications on Modern Parallel Vector Systems, ” VECPAR 2006, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, July 2006. [pdf]


In the News

NPR: Curbing Supercomputers' Growing Drain on Energy

KQED Quest: Supercomputers Hit an Energy Wall

HPC Wire: Heterogeneous Computing and HPC Accelerators, Disruptive Technologies in the Making 

insideHPC: Rock Stars of HPC

iSGTW: John Shalf Talks Parallel Programming Languages

insideHPC: Q&A with John Shalf, Chair of the Disruptive Technology Showcase

ITnews: NERSC Researcher John Shalf Discusses Low-Power Supercomputer

Confronting Parallelism: The View from Berkeley



M.S., Electrical Engineering, Virginia Tech University


QUEST on KQED Public Media.

last updated: 2011-11-29 15:25:42