Meet Milton: the future of information processing

Meet Milton: the future of information processing

Illuminate newsletter header, March 2017
March 2017

Milton the mascot for Institute research computing
Meet Milton, the mascot for the Institute's new
research computing cloud, a service which enables 
scientists to efficiently process massive data sets.

The mascot may be a little blue monster, but the research processing capabilities it represents are no child’s play. 

A year in the making, Milton is the interface for a ‘high-performance research computing cloud’ enabling Institute scientists to process massive data sets from their research.

Faster processing and discoveries

Proteomics researcher Dr Giuseppe Infusini, who has been using Milton to analyse data, said he was now able to process information in-house at a volume, speed and complexity that was previously impossible.

“Through Milton I can now analyse massive amounts of data without leaving the Institute and within my lifetime,” Dr Infusini said.

Jakub Szarlat
eResearch Systems Manager Mr Jakub Szarlat said 
Milton’s mission was to provide for faster testing
and discoveries.

A team lead by Professor Melanie Bahlo has been studying the evolution of drug resistance in more than 3000 malaria genome sequences.

The study required the team to process 3.2 terabytes of data, a task that would have been impossible with previous infrastructure but, with Milton, only used a third of its capacity and took just under one week.

An easy and economical solution

Milton’s technical architect Mr Jakub Szarlat from the Institute’s Information Technology Services team said Milton’s mission was to provide a flexible, economical solution that would ultimately enable faster testing and discoveries.

“Milton provides data processing resources to users on an ‘as-needed and when-needed’ basis. When no longer required, those resources are simply released and recycled,” he said.

“As easy as booking a rental car online, our bioinformaticians and computational biologists are able to access Milton’s capabilities with the click of a button,” Mr Szarlat said.

The institute partnered with Xenon (as lead partner), Quantum, NetSolutions, and Juniper to deliver Milton.


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