Natalie Danezi, Grid & Cloud Services Advisor at SURF
Natalie Danezi has been working at SURF as Grid & Cloud Services Advisor since November 2012. ‘Teamwork is core to our job. If you want to work alone in front of a computer screen all day, SU is not the right place for you.’
Solving scientific problems
'My job is to assist researchers in solving scientific problems by using e-infrastructures. I help them submit workloads that involve hundreds of thousands of core hours and many terabytes of data. I also help them build their own HPC system using virtualisation techniques. I translate functional requirements into technical implementation and develop algorithms for tackling large-scale simulation and data analysis problems. At the same time, I ensure the efficient use of our HPC systems and the availability of resources. I feel proud when users are enthusiastic and become proficient at using the infrastructures on a large scale.'
Sharing work and knowledge
'I also teach universities, university medical centres or spin-off companies about fundamental concepts, tools and best practices relating to HPC systems. I test innovative technologies and share my work at conferences and in technical blog posts or peer-reviewed journals. I also participate in several national and international projects. With my background in Computer Science and Distributed Systems, SURF s the best place for me to contribute to resolving real problems in Life Sciences, Social Sciences, Humanities, Astronomy, Engineering and various other disciplines.'
Collaboration and innovation
'SURF encourages initiative and provides a great environment if you wish to work with cutting‑edge technologies and develop your ideas to leverage the existing capability in cooperation with passionate colleagues. At SURF, people deliver top performance while collaborating on innovation projects. We also work closely together with researchers. It is very inspiring to help them achieve their scientific goals, while getting a glimpse of their scientific work at the same time.'
Human and informal interaction
'Our users’ need for computation and data processing on a large scale provides new challenges almost every day, in both new and ongoing projects. To tackle these issues, I am in touch with users a lot, but I also brainstorm with colleagues on a daily basis on how to optimise our systems and services. Teamwork is core to our job. It is essential for delivering high-quality services and keeping the availability and performance of our systems at a high level. If you want to work alone in front of a computer screen all day, SURF is not the right place for you. We have a lot of informal and friendly contact, to help each other and share knowledge. You can get so inspired just by having a cup of coffee and chatting with your colleagues!'