NAG webinar: Verification and Modernisation of Fortran Codes – Thu, Sep 13, 2018 3:00 PM – 3:40 PM BST


Fortran remains the dominant programming language of scientific computation and HPC, and is likely to be for the foreseeable future. Advances in compiler technology and techniques have yielded huge performance gains for Fortran codes. However, there is very little emphasis on correctness and language standards compliance. The NAG Fortran Compiler was designed with a strong emphasis on correctness and adherence to the language standard, as well as providing additional features for modernising legacy codes.

This webinar will show how the NAG Fortran Compiler can be used to write correct and performance portable code which is not always possible with other compilers. By strictly adhering to the language standard, this makes the code portable to other compilers. This webinar will show you:

1. How to detect errors in code using the NAG Fortran Compiler;

2. How to use the precision unifying feature to avoid subtle precision bugs;

3. Real world errors detected by the NAG Fortran Compiler;

4. How to modernise legacy Fortran 77 code to modern Fortran;

5. How to incorporate the NAG Fortran Compiler into your code development workflow.

About the Presenter: Wadud Miah is employed at NAG and is working on the Performance Optimisation and Productivity (POP) project. His background is in computational science, HPC, and parallel programming. He has worked in multiple roles in HPC, helping researchers improve their productivity. His other roles include code development, teaching computer programming and POP outreach.

Job: HPC Scientist & Computer Manager

The job ad can be found at or at the University of Lincoln site.

The role holder will manage School’s HPC cluster and other computational resources and software, provide highly specialist HPC support to academic staff on research projects and support to teaching staff in computer classes.

The position is based in the School of Mathematics and Physics at the University of Lincoln, UK.

The application deadline is the 23rd of August 2018.

Joint meeting with BCS Fortran group 27-SEP-2018

The next annual joint meeting of the computational physics group and the BSC Fortran group will be on THU 27-SEP-2018 at BCS HQ, central London.

The afternoon talks are open to all. Everybody is welcome. Attendance is free of charge but please book your place via the Eventbrite site to ensure your admission to the Davidson building and your lunch if you want one.

This year, we have prepared an exciting selection of talks on Fortran standards, Arm compilers, Isambard Arm HPC system, gfortran and Fortran on GPUs.

Come for the talks, hear Fortran news and chat to fellow Fortran users and developers.

Questionnaire on the value of newer Fortran standards

Benefits of continuing Fortran standardisation

If you use Fortran, directly or indirectly, please will you complete this survey:

It has been developed by the committee of the BCS Fortran Group to quantify the value of modern Fortran standards to organisations and individuals.  The results of the survey will help the Group justify continuing involvement in Fortran standardisation efforts.

The results of the survey will be shared with the ISO Fortran standardisation committee, so your responses will help shape the future of the Fortran language.

The survey will run until 31 Dec. 2018.

The Fortran language has been steadily developing since its origins in 1957.  Many people have been working on revising the Fortran specification, resulting in Fortran 77, 90, 95, 2003, 2008 and 2018 standards.  This survey is designed to find out exactly what benefits newer Fortran standards bring to the community.

We would like to know how newer Fortran standards have increased the quality of your code, cut development costs, increased portability or performance of your code, or whether you can attach any monetary value to the benefits enabled by modern Fortran standards.

This questionnaire contains 4 sections.  All questions are optional.  It will take no more than 10 minutes to complete.

Anton Shterenlikht, BCS Fortran Standards Officer

Quantum Summer school for 16+, Bristol, 6-10 AUG 2018

The Computational Physics Group is co-sponsoring the Quantum in the Summer school for students aged 16 and over. The intensive week-long summer school runs from Monday 6th to Friday 10th August 2018 at the University of Bristol, and aims to teach students about quantum mechanics and light. Another aim is making the students aware of the potential career options available in quantum science and engineering.

Several sessions will be held on classical and quantum computations, with hands-on exercises.

Please pass this on to GCSE leavers, sixth-formers, etc.

Spring newsletter released

The spring 2018 edition of the newsletter is now available to read, with contributions from the 2017 IoP CPG PhD thesis prize winner Dr Ioan-Bogdan Magdău and runner-up Dr Morgane Vacher, as well as conference and workshop reports.

UK OpenMP Users’ Conference – 40% discount for students and RSE

  • The 1st UK OpenMP Users’ Conference
  • May 21-22, 2018 – St Catherine’s College, Oxford
  • The event provides a great opportunity for expert and novice OpenMP developers to enhance their skills and share OpenMP programming knowledge.
  • Monday: Three tutorials from leading OpenMP Experts: Hand-on-Introduction to OpenMP, Advanced OpenMP – Performance and 4.5 Features, Programming your GPU with OpenMP.
  • Tuesday: 11 technical presentations, including a keynote from the UK Met Office and an invited speaker.
  • 40% discount for students and members of the Research Software Engineer Association.
  • Website:
  • Follow-us: @ukopenmpusers
  • Join the UK Developers LinkedIn group at:


UK OpenMP User’s Conference 2018

21-22-MAY-2018 at St Catherine’s College, Oxford, UK.

This inaugural event is intended to become the annual meeting of the growing UK-based community of developers who use OpenMP, with the aims being to:

  • Provide an opportunity for expert and novice OpenMP developers to enhance their skills.
  • Share OpenMP programing knowledge and best practise amongst UK users.
  • Network with fellow developers.
  • Help to promote the evolution of the OpenMP standard.
  • Provide a feedback channel to the OpenMP Architecture Review Board, so that the OpenMP language reflects the needs of the programmers who use it.
  • Enable the exchange of ideas with vendors of OpenMP hardware, software and tools.

The meeting is open to anyone who is interested in participating in, or contributing to, the UK community of OpenMP developers.

Further OpenMP events.

Who are research software engineers?

Research relies on software experts

By Simon Hettrick, Deputy Director, Software Sustainability Institute.

Most research would be impossible without software, and this reliance is forcing a rethink of the skills needed in a traditional research group. A survey of 15 Russell Group universities found that 92% of researchers used research software, 67% reported that it was fundamental to their research, and 56% said they developed their own software.

With the emergence of software as the pre-eminent research tool used across all disciplines, comes the realisation that a significant majority of results are based, ultimately, on the skill of the experts who design and build it. Since 2012, a community of these experts has grown around a campaign to raise awareness of the people who build the software used in research. These people have worked under many titles, but many now identify as Research Software Engineers.

The most popular software packages used in research are all, broadly speaking, programming languages. These allow researchers to develop their own programs to solve problems specific to their research. Some of these programs develop into substantial software packages with millions of lines of code, but to concentrate only on these headline-grabbing examples is to overlook the ubiquity of software in research. Millions of pro­grams are used by researchers to analyse and transform their data. These are the real workhorses of research, and without them the vast majority of results could not be produced. Who writes these programs if there is no career path for a software expert in academia?

The established approach to recruiting software expertise is a hotch­potch of different solutions that have been developed to meet the disparate needs of local human resources and finance depart­ments, university culture and restrictions from funders. This lack of consistency has created an unrecognised and tenuous exist­ence for the people who develop software in academia, and this severely limits the number of people who can help researchers benefit from software.

Since 2013, the UK has led the world in recognising the importance of research software engineering. This has been the result of a grass-roots campaign, initiated and still supported by the Software Sustainability Institue (SSI), but since coordinated by the research software engineering community itself. The campaign has witnessed the rapid growth of an active community of over 1100 Research Software Engineers – a success which is being emulated from Australia to the US. It has seen the proliferation of a new type of group which pools software expertise across a university so that researchers can hire experts when they need them. It is a campaign that it backed by a growing number of research funders – for example, the EPSRC which invested millions into an RSE Fellowship – and hope that providing access to software experts will improve the reliability, reproducibility and reusability of the software used in research.

The RSE Conference was founded in 2016 to help the rapidly growing community coalesce. The first conference brought together 202 RSEs from 16 different countries, the second conference repeated this success and sold out the conference venue, and the third – this year’s conference – aims to double attendance. If you use software in research and want to talk about your work, then the RSE Conference is a great way to enter the community. If you like what you see, you can join the UK RSE Association .

Our grassroots community has achieved a number of successes, but there is much work still to be done. We must convince all research stakeholders of the vital link between reliable software and reliable results, and we must provide robust careers for RSEs and we must continue to make an RSE service available across all academic organisations. By providing the expertise needed by modern research groups, we will promote the development of well-engineered software that will increase the scope, productivity and reliability of research.