One of the major areas where the High Performance Information Systems Laboratory exposes technological excellence is the development of Internet Websites and Portals. As indicated by the results of the HDC Portal, ULYSSES, BOOKTRADE, the Web Server of the Ministry of Environment Physical Planning and Public Works, the Web Server of the GNTO and other projects, the laboratory has substantial experience and enhanced technical knowledge in developing websites and portals. Design and implementation of efficient, dynamic and extensible websites is certified by the reliance of major state institutions on the laboratory for their promotion on the Internet and by the international acknowledgement of the aforementioned sites. Specifically, these are some indicative results in producing Internet Websites and Portals:
ARXIMIDIS, http://www.innovationpde.gr :
An unified environment for the support, promotion and demonstration of innovation in the Region of Western Greece. The project supports the creation of an open information system by the use of which the wide range demonstration of innovative results and the promotion of collaboration in innovative technologies is achieved.
Portal of the Hellenic Digitization Committee (HDC), http://www.hdpweb.org :
HDC's website operates as an informational portal that combines a variety of relevant information with advanced services. The Portal is the major source of information about Digitization projects in Greece and constitutes a best practice paradigm recognized by institutions operating in digitization at a European level, especially in the benchmarking area.
WWW Server ULYSSES, http://www.culture.gr :
"Ulysses" is one of the largest and most highly acclaimed cultural web sites worldwide. The number of "Ulysses" visitors exceeds a monthly average of 100,000 guests, 85% of whom live abroad. Sections on Greek cultural heritage and contemporary cultural creation are available, including hundreds of archaeological sites, museums and monuments, cultural organizations, exhibitions, special issues. Most of them are provided in English and are accompanied by a variety of services.
BOOKTRADE, https://www.booktrade.gr :
This project involved the development of an environment for business-to-business e-commerce in the vertical market of books. It is mainly a B2B electronic marketplace, where publishers and booksellers can cooperate for the electronic purchase of books. Special care has been taken to integrate the system with customers' ERP systems, as well as to develop a secure, flexible and extensible system.
WWW Server of the National Book Center, http://book.culture.gr :
The site has already accomplished five years of presence and offers numerous services to book-related professionals, researchers and the public. Most of the site is available also in English and offers on-line access to many Multimedia Databases, supporting subject-oriented or advanced search. Document requests on the server exceed an hourly average of 100, originating from visitors living in more than 200 countries.
HPCLAB uses the most up-to-date technologies in developing websites and portals, namely:
Advanced security systems and topologies
Special methods for IPR protection
Public Key Infrastructure (PKI), Catalogues (LDAP servers), Certificates
Data Bases & Digital Image Libraries
New technologies for presenting multimedia content
Advanced - up to date programming languages for providing dynamic content and specialized solutions (JAVA, PHP)
Networks - Intranets
Cross section of the lab's experience in developing Intranets is the Intranet of the Hellenic Ministry of Culture. HPCLab was responsible for preparing a technical study and developing a full-services Intranet to facilitate the internal informational needs of the Ministry and supporting its interconnection all over Greece. The project is completed and the implemented intranet interconnects more than 200 departments of the Ministry throughout Greece. E-mail, News, WWW-access facilities are available to more than 3,000 users. Individual organizational units have the capability of deploying their own sites (under "culture.gr") on the Internet using the same methodologies applied in "ULYSSES".
Moreover, the laboratory has undertaken the technical study for the Information System of the National Cultural Network of Cities, funded by the Hellenic Ministry of Culture. The objective of the study regards a Multilevel Hierarchical Network utilizing Intranet Technologies over a private WAN for the HMC.
Another area in which the laboratory demonstrates significant specialization and experience is the design and implementation of original and interactive multimedia/hypermedia applications in CD-ROMs. Representative examples of the lab's successful operation in this area are the following thematic electronic publications:
The Life of Melina Mercouri:
The project's objective was the production of a multimedia CD-ROM presenting the life and work of Melina Mercouri, combining a large database with original ideas for hypermedia navigation. The CD-ROM of Melina Mercouri has been highly acclaimed in Greece, as well as abroad and has already been translated in English. In particular, The Melina Mercouri CD-ROM received the first award at the Second Greek Moebius Multimedia Awards. It has also won the first award in the Culture category. The Melina Mercouri CD-ROM was also one of the 25 nominees, at the final stage of the Europrix 2000 MultiMedia Art award, which is supported by the European Commission. The CD-ROM advanced to the finals after successful competition with about 500 products and applications that were submitted from producers in 30 countries.
The Acropolis of Athens:
The object of the project is the production of a multimedia CD-ROM presenting the Acropolis of Athens in collaboration with expert archaeologists, historians and architects of the Acropolis.Even though this project has just completed it had a great success. It produced a magnifical CD-ROM which gained two big honors: The big award in the greek part of the multimedia competition Moebius (March 2003) and the first award of culture in the same competition.
Virtual reality systems - 3D modeling
The laboratory has also to display remarkable and pioneering results in the area of virtual reality systems development. Ranging from haptic systems development to 3D site modeling using virtual and augmented reality technologies, HPCLab has acquired substantial technical knowledge and produces rich research work, in respect to the current, as well as to the future developments in this area. Some indicative results:
MUVII (Multi User Virtual Interactive Interface):
The project aims in developing a new Input Device featuring haptic 3D feedback (Çaptic-3D-Énterface, H3DI) and two prototypes (demonstrators) of innovative products utilizing this device: the Immersive-Theatre and the Interactive-Kiosk. The H3DI device will integrate haptic feedbacks for a very large range of applications in the educational, entertainment and commercial field. Apart from the professional use of the device, for example in museums, low-cost versions can be mass-produced for general public use. For example, the device could be used in e-commerce allowing customers to touch and feel the texture of the product sold.
Implementation of a 3D model of the Parthenon of Athens:
The project included the implementation of a 3-D model and walk-through environment of the Parthenon of Athens. The 3-D model has already been developed and will be navigated through PC-workstations on the same LAN as the model database server, using real-time 3-D technology. The model of Parthenon is based, among other information, on valuable unpublished scientific information by the Hellenic Ministry of Culture.
Parallel Systems have traditionally been the lab's spearhead in the High Performance Computation research area, since HPCLab has been pioneering in Greece in conducting the first activities and research programs on parallel systems. Today, the High Performance Information Systems Laboratory continues to produce internationally acclaimed work and high level research in this area. Remarkable highlight was the Best Paper Award for the paper "Is Data Distribution necessary in openMP?" that has been the product of time and effort consuming research of distinguished laboratory members and was presented at the IEEE/ACM Supercomputing 2000 Conference, Dallas, Texas, in November 2000.
Lab's activities in the area of parallel systems include, among others, the programs:
POP (Performance Portability of OpenMP):
The object of the project is the design of an environment able to generate portable and efficient OpenMP code for any parallel/distributed architecture focusing on the extension of OpenMP, dynamic adaptability and architectural modifications for better support of OpenMP applications. The lab's involvement in the project includes mainly the development of a portable OpenMP runtime for a plethora of architectures and the development of resource managing techniques for the efficient execution of OpenMP programs in non-dedicated environments.
The NANOS program objective was the "Effective Integration of Fine-grain Parallelism Exploitation and Multiprogramming". NANOS contributed a set of highly efficient schemes for extracting, scheduling, adapting and managing parallelism in dynamic execution environments. These schemes have been fully integrated in a complete compilation and parallel execution environment, targeting a state of the art supercomputer, the SGI Origin2000. The strengths of the NANOS approaches have been demonstrated through the parallelization of a number of standard benchmark codes as well as real industrial applications written in FORTRAN. The results of NANOS have been disseminated in invited presentations, tutorials and more than 15 papers in major international conferences and workshops. The project is already completed and received an evaluation from the European Commission of a technically excellent project.
High Performance Computing for Scientific & Multimedia Applications
The object of the project is the exploitation, adjustment and evaluation of state of the art parallel system software technologies, in order to satisfy the computational demands of practical applications with intense requirements for computational power and memory, in various parallel computation platforms. The role of HPCLAB includes, among other activities, implementation of new parallel systems technologies at the system-software level (OS Kernel - run-time libraries) and the transfer of parallel systems technologies implemented on ccNUMA architectures to other architectures. The program has led to various publications in international conferences and national press.