Feature - Youngest-ever at grid summer school?
This summer, OGF (Open Grid Forum ) welcomed someone who was possibly the youngest delegate in their history at OGF23, a grid standards conference held in June in Barcelona, Spain. We caught up with 15-year-old Iris Schott to hear how she got interested in grids and what else she has been doing with her summer. Here is the result of our question-and-answer session:
iSGTW: What did you think of the conference?
IS: “To be honest, I didn’t understand much the first two days! At the end of the second day, some friends sat down with me, I asked them questions, and they explained a lot about how grid computing works. After that I found it much more exciting.”
iSGTW: What do you think is exciting about grids?
IS: “You can do really interesting things with them. For example, it is possible to predict the development of a company’s shares, an investment, or the economy by performing simulations on the grid. This can help you make good business choices. Companies can also use grids for technical calculations, I learned of car producers who are using it in crash simulations.”
IS: “Yes! This summer at OGF23 was very important for me in fact. It gave me the final trigger to choose my topic for study at university. I’ll next year, in the fall of 2009, studying mathematical finance and computing.”
iSGTW: How did you originally get interested in this?
IS: “It began in 2005—I was 13—when my father brought home a Desktop Grid (Platform LSF Desktop) to test. He connected all the PCs in house, including mine. This really fascinated me. I charged him for CPU hours used and saw for the first time that grid computing could be used to make money.”
iSGTW: What else have you been doing with your summer?
IS: “I attended the Core Grid Summer School held in early July in Dortmund, Germany. And I also interned as a team leader at a scout camp in Germany. So, this summer, when I haven’t been learning about Service Level Agreements I’ve been building forts, swimming and cooking with kids.”
iSGTW: You were the youngest participant at OGF this summer; Were you one of the few females as well?
IS: “It’s true there were not many women there, maybe ten percent. (OGF23 said there were 56 females out of a total audience of 566.) But I think that will change with the next generation. I see many young females in Germany who are interested in Information Technology and who plan make it their career. I will be one of them.”
Iris wrote a report about her experiences at OGF23, which is online at the OGF scholarship reports website .
—Interviewed by Danielle Venton, EGEE