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The Netherlands eScience-Center  - Executive Summary


A decade or so long experience with research and education network based scientific projects has created a relative cornucopia of tools -- many of which have become known as enhanced science instruments.  These instruments are used by domain scientists – that is a scientist focusing on a specific domain or field of study such as biology, physics, astronomy, climate change, oceanography, genomics and so on.  Most domain scientists are well aware of these tools. But what has become better understood in the last 5 to 10 years, is that, without specialized assistance, these domain scientists are ill-equipped to be able to both keep up with new developments within their domain and understand how to apply these tools to their domain.  

A solution to the problem of both keeping up with and understanding how to apply the new tools is important.  Because, as readers shall see, the application of these tools enables domain scientists to do significant new research that otherwise would be impossible.

These developments have created the opportunity for a new field: eScience -- also known as enhanced science. Tony Hey, one of the pioneers of eScience pushed for eScience in the United Kingdom and, beginning around the year 2003 set up a program investing in computer equipment and human talent. But when the Director General of the Research Councils, John Taylor retired in 2004, most funding for the eScience effort went back to domain sciences. Tony must have realized that this development boded poorly for future progress and consequently accepted an offer to go to Microsoft and work with Jim Grey.  

Meanwhile in the Netherlands Bob Hertzberger did an experiment between 2004 and 2009 known as VL-e (Virtual laboratory for e-science). And then, as opposed to the direction taken by UK developments, Bob advocated that the VL-e efforts would be continued in the form of an e-Science center concentrating of the role of human talent. The result has become the Netherlands eScience Center (NLeSC) that is the subject of his report.

In the view of NLeSC the eScience field is built by nurturing two subspecialties of human talent. The first is the enhanced science integrator. These are senior domain scientists who are most interested in applying these new tools in their domains to do better science and thereby demonstrate the importance of eScience applications. Doing this also enables them to give guidance to members of the second subspecialty which is the enhanced science engineer.  These e-science engineers have considerable experience both in designing new application tools and in working with the domain scientist.  

Many of the results of the first three years of the Netherlands eScience Center (NLeSC) work are explored in this September October issue of the COOK Report. 

Our summary of this material provides an interesting picture of how the close collaboration between domain scientist and e-Science engineers works inside the NLeSC in everyday practice.  In doing so the Center creates new opportunities by shifting frontiers in domain sciences.  The Center creates these opportunities by making possible, new approaches in domain modeling as well as new implementations via parallelization and performance optimization techniques on new computer architectures composed of supercomputers and Graphics Processing Units (GPU’s) – developed for the game industry - enhanced by the opportunities provided by the speed of light path networks.  

While this report covers the broad spectrum of what the NLeSC does, it focuses most of its detail on a climate-modeling project known as eSALSA that is run by a leading Dutch oceanographer together with a small team of eScience engineers. This project gives an excellent picture of what is possible by applying what is described above.

In doing so, it also lifts the curtain of a fascinating and very productive approach that, as will be illustrated, can be generalized to a broad spectrum of other scientific domains. This material is so important and impressive that we hope to be able to return to it in the near future.

 

Contents

Executive Summary                                        p.  4

Introduction and Background                                p.  6
A Trinity of Hardware, Software and People                      p.  8
Reaching Out to the Scientific Domains                          p.  8
Optimising Discovery in the Era of Big Data and Big Science           p.  9

What is Delivered for the Public Investment in the NLeSC?            p. 10

Doing What Otherwise Would be Impossible                                p. 14

Summary of the basic concepts that underlie the
functioning of eScience Instruments                              p. 15

eSALSA: Predicting Future Local Sea Level Changes                          p. 17
AMUSE: as a Multi Model Simulation Environment Used in eSALSA      p. 19
The Power of Distributed Computing                            p. 21

Jungle Computing and GPU Kernels                              p. 22

Lightpath Computing as the Overall Enabler                      p. 23
eAstronomy: Big Data for the Big Bang                          p. 27
eSTeP: eScience Technology Platform                          p. 29

eScience Communities                                      p. 30
Enabling Data-Driven Approaches                                p. 31
Biomarker Boosting through eScience                          p. 32
Virtual Laboratory for Bird Movement Behavior
Better Sensors Permit Continual Tracking of Behaviour of
Groups of Animals                                          p. 33

Living in 21st Century Smart Cities                              p. 34
Taking Care of Data and Software                              p. 36
Evidence for Open Sourcing of Previously Proprietary Data             p. 37
Working with Traditional Academia                              p. 38
Looking to the Future of NLeSC                                  p. 40
Concluding Thoughts                                      p. 41   

 

Ecuador -very strange endof the FLOK

 

Executive Summary

The FLOK Denouement


The FLOK could have shown us a way to defend ourselves from the ongoing destruction of constitutional governments that have the genuine support of the people who live in nation states ruled by them. This opportunity is gone and indeed it was likely never there because as the previous July August COOK Report has shown, the FLOK, that was presented to the world, was a lie. How bad a lie is demonstrated is this final report which is intended to make public as much information as I can find while the group that gathered around Daniel Vasquez fights over the scraps gathered under the pretense that there is a viable FLOK brand. The intent appears to me at least to first and foremost feed its organizers rather than make a shred of difference in the lives or ordinary Latin Americans.

The FLOK, in its initial clothing, ended in chaos as Michelle Bauwens flew back to Thailand on June 30 still owed 2.5 months salary. Just before he left he published a very short evaluation -- critical but certainly friendly and without too many negative details at all. For this he was brutally attacked by Bernardo Gutiérrez who also trashed the work of Daniel Arraya and Janice Figueiredo as well as that of Michel.

Michel had announced that he was preparing an evaluative essay on "Hacker Bolchevism, the paranoid style of politics in p2p” to “critique the non-prefigurative politics that were so characteristic of the FLOK internal process.”  Good.  It seemed that Michel would put all his cards on the table.  

As he wrote “The truth is that the FLOK attempted to create a mythology of success, and of political and social support that wasn't there, and that Bernardo's highly stage-managed twitter storms were part of that effort. The very reason that BG is attempting to suppress an evaluation of the FLOK, is that it endangered potential backroom deals.”

Bauwens continued “And further I was subjected to public threats to publish private emails in order to discourage any independent evaluation, which is what prompted to add this specific paragraph about the internal workings of the FLOK process. Engagements to third parties were routinely changed and unilaterally adapted created all kinds of embarrassments towards those parties and endangering our trust and reputational capital. There was a regular use of private and public intimidation, including a threat of physical intimidation during the very summit, including against members of the research team to discourage them from sharing their point of view on the public discussion list.”

Having Promised a Full Report Michel Backs Down

But Michel, saying he would not back down, eventually did just that. COOK Report: On July 15 I received an assessment of Ecuador from Michel dated July 17th for publication in the p2p blog on that DAY. When the day came and went with no appearance I wrote Michel who responded,

Bauwens: Hi Gordon, We decided not to publish it after a internal meeting of p2p-f ... the reason is that there is too much backlash and negative energy developing and we decided that it was taking time away from our constructive pursuits ... when we argue for a political assessment, they respond with threats .. they are not important enough for spending all our time on this.

COOK Report: My complaint with you at this point is that you apparently won't defend yourself any further and you try to cloak your decision behind the shadow of a collective request of the "core p2p group"  and sorry I don't know what such a group is.

This collective request will likely turn out to be the most important action ever undertaken in the entire history of the organization that you have dedicated your life to building. Surely you will be more transparent about who the members are and the nature of the request…apparently it was thought not capitulating would stand in the way of other more important p2p work.  Hope that is not the first step down the slippery slope of the end justifying the means.

You need to publish the evaluation because you announced it, as a matter of self defense, while under heavy attack, and claiming at the time that you would not be intimidated.  Not only that, but after the mess, everybody is waiting for closure.  If you don't provide close and you are not doing so then the rumor mills will be in full control.  Not only of flok but also of your reputation.

If you don't take that final step, the psychopaths will stand at attention and feel their power, and keep bullying everybody until someone else will confront them at some point in the future, take the heat, and eventually shut their big mouths. The final and most disastrous option is to capitulate as you area now very conveniently doing.  You even have an excuse. It was not my decision it was that of the core group. And then you will find that you enter another loop as you await the next attack.  Abandoning now will give them the impression that "they won". Abandoning your solemn word will also raise the question of whether people should trust you in the future.


The Decision to Capitulate Made by P2P Core Group - the Identity of Which is Available only to those with a “Need to Know”

But on July 28 Bauwens: Gordon, I am now also no longer responding to this controversy and the prods coming from you here.   As I said, I regret to be the focus of your open letter, as the only person who actually challenged their practices publicly, rather than the focus on the do-ers of the deeds.

COOK Report: So lets see what Michel is saying: I think you know all you need to know.  SO P2P which pre FLOK was transparent, ends with secrecy based on the “need to know.”  Michel violates the pledges he made to his community and when asked for an explanation resorts to obfuscation.  Since the identity of the core members is now thanks to FLOK a secret, I must result to speculation.

I find it appaling that Michel would do this.  He does say BG has systematically targetted my associations, threatening to 'bring me down', promising a bombshell, and trying to wean them away from the network promising juicy flok contracts ... this is just the way they operate, and none of us is going to change that ..

Here I absolutely focus on the “doers of the deeds” as Michel says above.  On July 3rd and July 4th two long emails from Michel showed up in my in box.  They were cc’ed to roughly 12 P2P related and FLOK related individuals.  I was NOT on the cc list.  Therefore I can only conclude that Michel bcc’ed the two emails to me.  They are directed to Bernardo Guiterriz and they provide fascinating detail about Michel’s experience - detail that very likely would have been in Michel’s open evaluation had he completed one.  Consider my publication of them to be a proxy for the FULL evaluation that Michel promised but never completed.  Michel knows me very well and putting this material in my hands was cetainly the best way to ensure that it saw the light of day.  In early March from the depths of darkness Michel  enbcouraged me to publish about the problems he encountered.  At that time, not knowing the flimsy foundation for the project and all the other details that I uncovered in May, I declined.  The key details just referred to as written by Michel are found on pages 17 -20 below.

Out of a Desire to Do Good Michel Gets Burned and Then Capitulates to his Tormentors in Order that Yet another NGO Can Fufill its Mission

Editor’s Comment: Michel moved to Ecuador with no income other than what Daniel was willing to pay him.   Then, after returning home, when the threats from Ecuador continued, Michel decided against  publication of his detailed evaluation offering the very troubling explanation that he has done it at the request of a “p2p core group” - the members of which he refuses to identify. Thus he has the worst of all worlds.  The introduction of secrecy into p2p overnance and forcing both his friends and enemies to speculate as to what happened -- especially what happened when at the end of July threats were made to destroy him.

COOK Report: Sadly you needed money to pay you rent and buy food to eat and by now your familiy had joined you, so with Daniel controlling whether you would be paid or not you had little choice but to in effect say ‘yes sir’. No wonder you speak of PTSD.

There are other issues of serious omission. By January when Bethany’s Newsweek article came out and she was safely back in Canada, not saying what had happened to her and not saying much of anything about Correa’s treatment of his indigenous people, was really bad.  I was angry when I realized that you had to have known about this sort of thing and remained silent. But now its clear that, perhaps you had little choice because, if you angered Daniel, he simply would withhold your pay.  And not just pay - what about the ticket home for you and your family?  Although perhaps your ticket was assured and you were just reluctant to criticise the president whose favor you desired?  We will I suppose never know the truth given that you have invented a reason to violate the pledge of full disclosure you gave to your own community.

But in my opinion, the fact that your fellow commoners have been successfully abused to the point where, rather putting all cards on the table, you offer them what is in efect a white flag does not bode well.  But again are they being abused by Daniel Vazquez and Bernardo or are they merely ALL of them fighting each of for control of alleged FLOK monetary contracts?  It seems that thanks to your capitulation we shall never know.  Now as a you put it I now know all I need to know.  OK the P2P is divided in two: those who know: who won and who lost and the rest of us who have no need to know the foregoing..

My hope here is that I and like minded others can put enough evidence in the public domain about “flok management” and its associates so that ANYONE they approach in future will understand the absolute neccessity of asking very serious questions.  They seem to be kidding themselves that they have a viable “brand” - when the reality is that anyone who is approached by them had better run in the other direction. Why? Because pledges made might be kept or we may find out that they were like Bernardo’s guerrila theater.  Made to be broken.

That’s all.  Over and out.  I truly wish you more success - next time.

Contents

Ecuador: the Denouement or very Strange End of the FLOK
(part 2 of Sept -Oct COOK Report)



Executive Summary                                       p.  3                                
The Very Strange End of the Flok                         p.  7
Background -- The Operation and Mission of the
P2P Foundation                                        p.  8
Some American Perspectives                            p.  9
What Happened                                        p.11
June 29 Bauwens                                             p.15
July 3rd Here it gets truly bizarre.                                 p.16
July 4                                                       p.21
July 5 A parting of ways with Bernardo Gutierrez                 p.25
July 7 The Budget                                              p.28
The Absurdity of Yachai                                          p.29
An Assessment of the FLOK process & Why the P2P
Foundation will not use the FLOK brand in the future         p.31
Finally, on July 27 on the P2P List                         p.40
My Closing Comments for Michel                         p.44