Technical Paper
GISandbox: A Science Gateway for Geospatial Computing
Event Type
Technical Paper
Application Tags
Science Gateways
Technical Paper Tags
Technical Paper
TimeWednesday, July 254:30pm - 4:45pm
DescriptionScience gateways provide easy access to domain-specific tools and
data. The field of Geographic Information Science and Systems (GIS)
uses myriad tools and datasets, which raises challenges in designing
a science gateway to meet users’ diverse research and teaching
needs. We describe a new science gateway called the GISandbox
that is designed meet the needs of researchers and educators leveraging
geospatial computing, which is situated at the nexus of GIS
and computational science. The GISandbox is built on Jupyter Notebooks
to create an easy, open, and flexible platform for geospatial
computing. Jupyter Notebooks is a widely used interactive computing
environment running in the browser that integrates live code,
narrative, equations and images. We extend the Jupyter Notebook
platform to enable users to run interactive notebooks on the cloud
resource Jetstream or computationally-intensive notebooks on the
Bridges supercomputer located at the Pittsburgh Supercomputing
Center. A novel Job Management platform allows the user to easily
submit a Jupyter Notebook for batch execution on Bridges (and
eventually Comet), monitor the SLURM job, and retrieve output
files. GISandbox Virtual Machines are created in Jetstream’s Atmosphere
interface and then deployed and configured using a series
of Ansible scripts, which allow us to create an easily reproducible
and scalable system. This paper outlines our vision for GISandbox,
the current implementation, with a discussion looking toward the
future and how the GISandbox could be used in other domains.