Happy Sithole is pioneering all aspects of research and technology frontiers on behalf of South Africa and across the continent. Happy has been integral to numerous African “firsts,” beginning with the inauguration of South Africa’s Centre for High Performance Computing (CHPC) in 2007, which featured the first Top 500 system listing for Africa — now playing host to numerous academic and industry research projects to bridge the nation’s technology divide and greatly extend its global reach.
Under Happy’s tutelage, and with tremendous support from the South African Department of Science and Technology (DST), the CHPC has become the cornerstone to building Africa’s cyber infrastructure, including the South African National Research Network (SANReN) and Very Large Databases (VLDB) initiatives. Today, CHPC is driving those efforts even further with collaboration agreements in place with the India-Tanzania Centre of Excellence to further research in agriculture and bioinformatics; with the African Institute of Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) to develop core expertise; to promoting South Africa as central player in the implementation of the Square Kilometre Array project.
At the heart of these efforts is Happy’s greater influence to uplifting South Africa’s socio-economic development. Through his role as Director of the CHPC and with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), he has been able to greatly influence change across the entire continent’s human resources in terms of education and development. Working with leaders across governments and states, Happy is leading the nation and continent’s transformation in becoming a recognized leader at a global level in science and technology, applications, resources and education. Much of his influence centers on engaging youth and providing greater opportunities for the ongoing advancement of black and female scientists in order to substantially increase South Africa’s number of M.Sc and PhD students and post-doc fellowships.
Built upon a great vision and entirely from scratch, the CHPC has become a prestige center in South Africa providing large scale compute resources to hundreds of researchers, institutes and industrial partners. One of the major influences on Happy’s objectives is his participation at a global level in key industry events, such as the upcoming SC11 conference in Seattle. Through Happy’s deep participation in key technical forums, like the SC conferences, CHPC has become a critical a connection, linking with the global research community as much as SC is in supporting Happy’s own plans around large scale HPC, networking infrastructures and data storage.
For Happy, SC provides a good platform to interact with different players across the field of HPC, from the technology vendors to application scientists and engineers, and is a great networking forum and meeting where you can find expertise under one roof.
In an undertaking of this magnitude, that reaches across such a large human transformation, Happy is one of the most recognized luminaries attending the SC conferences. His interests in the upcoming November conference are focused on exascale computing and the advances to architectural and application development that will continue to be key focus areas in Happy’s own initiatives and transforming South Africa, CHPC and CSIR to international dominance.
For an opportunity to meet Happy, investigate the research performed at The Centre for High Performance Computing and involve yourself in these exciting times in Africa, add Booth 849 to your exhibit itinerary at SC11!