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SIAG LA digest

Feb 6, 2017 • Jen Pestana

This month the digest features an article by Christine Klymko about her time as a postdoc in a government lab.


Article on postdoc life at a national lab by Christine Klymko

Christine Klymko has kindly written about her experience as a postdoc at Lawrence Livermore National Lab, and the differences between academia, industry, and lab life. Having now transitioned to a staff researcher position, it’s clear that the experience has been a positive one! We are grateful to Christine for taking the time to share her thoughts, which will be valuable to PhD students and researchers considering what to do next.

You can find her article here:

New from SIAM: Matlab Guide, Third Edition

Announcing the December 27, 2016, publication by SIAM of
MATLAB Guide, Third Edition
Desmond J. Higham and Nicholas J. Higham

MATLAB is an interactive system for numerical computation that is widely used for teaching and research in industry and academia. It provides a modern programming language and problem solving environment, with powerful data structures, customizable graphics, and easy-to-use editing and debugging tools.

This third edition of MATLAB Guide completely revises and updates the best-selling second edition and is more than 25 percent longer. The book remains a lively, concise introduction to the most popular and important features of MATLAB and the Symbolic Math Toolbox.

Key features are a tutorial in Chapter 1 that gives a hands-on overview of MATLAB, a thorough treatment of MATLAB mathematics, including the linear algebra and numerical analysis functions and the differential equation solvers, and a web page at that provides a link to example program files, updates, and links to MATLAB resources.

The new edition contains color figures throughout, includes pithy discussions of related topics in new “Asides” boxes that augment the text, has new chapters on the Parallel Computing Toolbox, object-oriented programming, graphs, and large data sets, covers important new MATLAB data types such as categorical arrays, string arrays, tall arrays, tables, and timetables, contains more on MATLAB workflow, including the Live Editor and unit tests, and fully reflects major updates to the MATLAB graphics system.

This book is suitable for both beginners and more experienced users, including students, researchers, and practitioners.

About the Authors

Desmond J. Higham is 1966 Chair of Numerical Analysis at the University of Strathclyde, UK. His research focuses on stochastic computation, network science, and city analytics. He is a SIAM Dahlquist Prize winner, a SIAM Fellow, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.

Nicholas J. Higham is Richardson Professor of Applied Mathematics at the University of Manchester, UK. His research focuses on numerical linear algebra, and he has contributed numerous functions to MATLAB. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society, a SIAM Fellow, and a Member of Academia Europaea.

List of Figures;
List of Tables; List of Program Files;
Preface; Chapter 1: A Brief Tutorial;
Chapter 2: Basics;
Chapter 3: Distinctive Features of MATLAB; Chapter 4: Arithmetic;
Chapter 5: Matrices;
Chapter 6: Operators and Flow Control;
Chapter 7: Program Files;
Chapter 8: Graphics;
Chapter 9: Linear Algebra;
Chapter 10: More on Functions;
Chapter 11: Numerical Methods: Part I;
Chapter 12: Numerical Methods: Part II;
Chapter 13: Input and Output;
Chapter 14: Troubleshooting;
Chapter 15: Sparse Matrices;
Chapter 16: More on Coding;
Chapter 17: Advanced Graphics;
Chapter 18: Other Data Types and Multidimensional Arrays;
Chapter 19: Object-Oriented Programming;
Chapter 20: The Symbolic Math Toolbox;
Chapter 21: Graphs;
Chapter 22: Large Data Sets;
Chapter 23: Optimizing Codes;
Chapter 24: Tricks and Tips; Chapter 25: The Parallel Computing Toolbox;
Chapter 26: Case Studies;
Appendix A: The Top 111 MATLAB Functions;

xxvi + 476 pages / Hardcover / ISBN 978-1-611974-65-2

List Price $62.00 / SIAM Member Price $43.40 / Order Code OT150

To order or for more about this book, including links to its table of contents, preface, and index, please visit

For more information about SIAM books, journals, conferences, memberships, or activities, contact:

Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics
3600 Market Street, 6th floor
Philadelphia, PA 19104-2688
800-447-SIAM (US and Canada)
Fax 215-386-7999 [email protected]

Call for submissions, Strathclyde NA Conference, June 2017

Registration is now open for the

27th Biennial Conference on Numerical Analysis

June 27-30, 2017, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland.

This long-established conference is open to all researchers in the field, and covers a diverse range of topics within numerical analysis. We welcome proposals for minisymposia on specific topics, as well as contributed talks in any relevant area: details of how to submit contributions can be found on our webpage (detials below).

The following distinguished researchers have accepted invitations for plenary lectures at the conference: Don Estep, Philip Gill, David Gleich, David Keyes, Christian Lubich, Ilaria Perugia, Gerlind Plonka-Hoch, Valeria Simoncini, Andrew Stuart, Endre Süli, Françoise Tisseur, Karin Tornberg.

Further information and on-line registration can be accessed at

Live-streaming of SAMSI WISO, 8-10 February 2017

Live-streaming SAMSI WISO workshop
February 8-10, 2017

The SAMSI Workshop on the Interface of Statistics and Optimization brings together pioneers in statistics and optimization. In one-hour lectures they will discuss the breadth and depth of advances, computational challenges, and cutting-edge applications.


  • Larry Biegler (CMU), John Burns (Virginia Tech), Jack Dongarra (Tennessee),
  • Yonina Eldar (Technion), Jianqing Fan (Princeton), Michael Jordan (UC Berkeley),
  • Arkadi Nemirovski (Georgia Tech), Alex Shapiro (Georgia Tech),
  • Bernd Sturmfels (UC Berkeley & MPI Leipzig), Martin Wainwright (UC Berkeley),
  • Margaret Wright (NYU Courant), Steve Wright (Wisconsin)

The workshop will be live-streamed at
The final schedule is still under construction.

First announcement: Manitoba Workshop on Mathematical Imaging Science

On 5 May 2017, the University of Manitoba will host the Manitoba Workshop on Mathematical Imaging Science. This workshop will focus on the mathematical issues and computational techniques that lie at the heart of many problems in imaging science. An intense one-day immersion into the mathematical and computational sides of imaging science, the MWMIS will feature four high-profile invited lecturers to speak on their current research in mathematical imaging science, and will also include contributed talks on the workshop’s theme. The MWMIS will bring together researchers working across imaging science to foster collaborations, uncover commonalities, and identify key challenges of mutual interest.

Invited Speakers:

  • Charles Epstein (University of Pennsylvania)
  • Misha Kilmer (Tufts University)
  • James Nagy (Emory University)
  • Raquel Urtasun (University of Toronto)

Contributed talks:

Participants have the option to give contributed talks or present posters. Those participants who wish to present a short (likely 20-30 minutes) lecture, or a poster, should send a title and 250 word abstract to Omit Chanda at [email protected].

Deadline for Title/Abstract submission: 14 April 2017.


To register, email [email protected] and include the following information: your name and institution; your position (faculty member, postdoctoral researcher, graduate student, undergraduate student); whether you plan to give a talk or present a poster. (Your title/abstract can be submitted with the registration or separately.) For planning purposes, please let us know whether you will attend the workshop by 21 April 2017.

Student Support:

Partial financial support for travel and/or accommodation expenses is available to a limited number of participants who are students or postdoctoral researchers at PIMS sites outside of Manitoba. Priority will be given to students/postdocs who contribute a talk or a poster. To request financial support, please email [email protected]. The deadline for requests is 31 March 2017.

Updated information will be posted on the conference web page as it becomes available; see

We look forward to welcoming you to the MWMIS!

Updated dates: Graph Algorithm Building Blocks (GABB) 2017

An IEEE IPDPS 2017 Workshop

=== Scope and Goals ===

This workshop series started with the narrow goal of exploring the definition of a set of basic building blocks for graph algorithms (, analogous to the Basic Linear Algebra Subprograms (BLAS) in numerical linear algebra. Over the years, our scope has expanded. We’ve welcomed a wide range of papers into GABB covering graph computations with an emphasis on high-performance and parallel computing. We expect this trend to continue in 2017.

In particular, while we retain our focus on “building blocks” for graph computations (including those not based on linear algebra), we also welcome work that focuses on libraries and frameworks to support applications that use graph algorithms.

Our target audience is developers of graph algorithms, researchers in high-performance computing working on irregular applications, applied mathematicians working on fundamental algorithmic building blocks for graph computations, and application scientists using graphs in their computational work and data analysis.

=== Submission and Dates ===

Submitted manuscripts may not exceed ten (10) single-spaced double-column pages using 10-point size font on 8.5x11-inch pages (IEEE conference style), including figures, tables, and references (see IPDPS Call for Papers for more details). All papers will be peer-reviewed. Proceedings of the workshops are distributed at the conference and are submitted for inclusion in the IEEE Xplore Digital Library after the conference.

Important dates (updated):
Submissions due: January 31, 2017 EST 23:59pm
Notification: February 21, 2017
Final Camera-Ready Manuscript due: March 15, 2017

=== Program Committee ===

David A. Bader, Georgia Institute of Technology
Aydın Buluç, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (co-chair)
Jonathan Berry, Sandia National Labs
John Gilbert, UC Santa Barbara
Vasia Kalavri, KTH Royal Institute of Technology
Jeremy Kepner, MIT Lincoln Labs
Chris Long, US Department of Defense
Andrew Lumsdaine, Pacific Northwest National Lab and University of Washington
Tim Mattson, Intel Corp. (co-chair)
Kamesh Madduri, Penn State University
Henning Meyerhenke, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology
John Owens, University of California, Davis
Fabrizio Petrini, Inter Corp.
Semih Salihoglu, University of Waterloo
Edgar Solomonik, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Sivan Toledo, Tel-Aviv University

Save the Date: Thirteenth SIAM Conference on Applied Linear Algebra

The SIAM Conferences on Applied Linear Algebra, organized by SIAM every three years, are the premier international conferences on applied linear algebra, which bring together diverse researchers and practitioners from academia, research laboratories, and industries all over the world to present and discuss their latest work and results on applied linear algebra.

Important Dates:
1 June 2017 - 30 September 2017 Minitutorial proposals
1 June 2017 - 30 September 2017 Minisymposium proposals
1 June 2017 - 30 October 2017 Abstracts for contributed and minisymposium speakers
1 June 2017 - 30 October 2017 Abstracts for posters
1 December 2017 - 30 January 2018 Pre-registration
4-8 May 2018 SIAM ALA18 Conference

PhD Studentship: Novel Preconditioners for RBF Linear Systems

Applications are invited for a fully funded 3 year PhD studentship in numerical linear algebra, under the supervision of Dr Jennifer Pestana and Dr Alison Ramage, at the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland.

This project aims to develop novel preconditioned iterative methods for linear systems arising in the numerical approximation of partial differential equations via radial basis functions (RBFs). These RBF methods are well suited to problems with complex geometries and/or scattered data, such as those occurring in biological and geophysical applications. However, the linear system that must be solved as part of the RBF method becomes increasingly challenging to work with as the approximation is refined. This project will extend previous work on preconditioning RBF systems to provide more efficient and robust solvers for these problems.

The studentship covers UK/EU tuition fees and comes with an annual tax-free stipend at the standard UK rate. International students who can fund the difference between UK/EU and International fee rates are also encouraged to apply.

Applicants should have or expect to obtain a good (I or II(i)) honours degree in mathematics or in a related discipline. Experience of numerical mathematics and/or programming would be beneficial.

For more information please contact Dr Pestana ([email protected]).

Professorship in High Performance Computing, Umea University, Sweden

Dear everyone,

First, we apologize if you have received multiple copies of this announcement.

Umea University welcomes applications for a permanent position as full Professor in High Performance Computing at the Department of Computing Science. We are seeking a strong academic leader with a clear strategic vision, that will have an important role and large freedom in developing the area of HPC at the department. The position includes research (at least 75% of full-time during the first six years of employment) as well as teaching and supervision at undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate level. Collaboration with or an active role in leadership within the High Performance Computing Center North (HPC2N, ), is also an opportunity. Link to complete add: Dead-line for applications is March 2, 2017.

An ongoing high-profile extreme-scale computing research project funded by the European Commission within the Future and Emerging Technologies (FET) program under Horizon 2020 is NLAFET ( ). For further information contact Head of Department Pedher Johansson ([email protected]) or Professor Bo Kagstrom ([email protected]).

With best regards, Bo Kagstrom

Postdoc in Data Science at AIMS-South Africa

The African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) - South Africa,, is searching for a postdoc in Data Science, see or details below.

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: Postdoctoral Fellowship in Data Science

The very crucial new field of Data Science is evolving very rapidly and has the potential to affect many applications. For the Mathematical Science community, we see lots of challenging mathematical and computational underpinnings of Data Science with tons of interesting research questions to investigate. The Data Science research group that is being built around the German Research Chair in Mathematics with specialization in Data Science will undertake research on the mathematical and computational challenges of the field. Research projects will be spread over the following thematic areas:

  • Mathematical methods for data science
  • Computational techniques (algorithms) for data science
  • Application of data science tools to problems from industry
  • HPC implementations and studies of arising scientific computing issues

Planned Supervision: Dr. Bubacarr Bah in collaboration with the AIMS South Africa German Research Chair Collaborators, Prof. Gitta Kutyniok at TU Berlin and Prof. Holger Rauhut at Aachen University.

Fellowships are tenable for one year, contingent on satisfactory progress, and could be extended for a second year. Fellowships are immediately available and the value of the award ranges between R200–R240k per annum, tax-free, subject to qualification and experience. Other benefits included the provision of a laptop, coverage of all cost associated with the use of HPC resources, and a conference travel allowance of R 30,000 per annum.

Preference will be given to applicants from SADC member states but candidates from all over Africa are encouraged to apply.


  • Conducting research in the thematic areas of Data Science stated above
  • Publish results in leading peer-reviewed journals and at international conferences
  • Assist senior researchers in guiding students on research projects
  • Collaborate with researchers at the AIMS Research Centre
  • Have some involvement in the AIMS-South Africa academic and outreach programs, and duties incidental thereto.


  • A relevant doctorate of high standing
  • A developing research capability which will lead to good publications
  • Ability to tutor postgraduate students successfully
  • Ability to work as part of an interdisciplinary team
  • Good communication skills
  • Fluency in English

Applications package

  • A covering letter motivating the application
  • A comprehensive CV stating research plans in the above or related areas
  • Two reference letters from academics familiar with your work
  • Statement on citizenship and whether a South African work permit is currently being held
  • Other practical information such as earliest date of commencement
  • Please note the Fellowship cannot be held concurrently with any supplementary funding.

Send completed applications to [email protected]

Send subject related questions to [email protected]

Closing dates for applications: February 15, 2017

DISCLAIMER: AIMS South Africa reserves the right to disqualify ineligible, incomplete and/or inappropriate applications. AIMS also reserves the right not to make an appointment to the position as advertised or to extend the deadline for applications. Only successful applicants will be contacted.

Submissions for next SIAM-LA digest

The next SIAM-LA Digest is due to be sent out on Mar 06, 2017. Please send any postings for the next Digest to siam-la at Only SIAG/LA members may submit postings. To contact the list owner, send an email to siam-la-owner at