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Illinois Computes Providing Researchers with Jupyter Notebooks

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Continuing its program mission to democratize research computing and make computing resources and support more accessible to campus, Illinois Computes is providing allocations through Jupyter Notebooks to University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign researchers free of charge.

Developed through open-source software, Jupyter Notebooks provide an interactive interface for code, data and computational documents that’s perfect for those who are fresh to research computing or don’t require advanced levels of capacity. It’s highly adaptable and customizable. Users can install and utilize various extensions and plugins to enhance functionality, tailor the interface to their liking with different themes and layouts, and configure Jupyter to work with different programming languages and environments, adding flexibility to their workflows.

Jupyter Notebooks empower researchers to dedicate their time and energy to their research, free from the complexities of software installation and system maintenance. Thanks to the robust support from Illinois Computes, both newcomers and seasoned members of the campus community can seamlessly harness this powerful tool without any financial burden on their respective departments.

Currently in open beta, the Illinois Computes Research Notebooks (ICRN) project is seeking to expand its user group to help with the second round of testing and strengthen the service for campus long-term. Jupyter Notebooks are an important part of the Illinois Computes mission to make research computing resources more available and accessible campus-wide.

We’re very excited to be able to offer this new opportunity to campus researchers. Jupyter Notebooks have long been a simple and accessible entry point for computing research, which aligns perfectly with our goals for Illinois Computes. This is an important step in NCSA helping support the computing needs across the University of Illinois campus.

Bill Gropp, NCSA Director

ICRN is a valuable opportunity for researchers in a wide range of disciplines.

“It’s a popular tool among data scientists for analysis, modeling and machine learning. Professors and students often use Jupyter Notebooks for teaching and conducting research,” said Senior Technical Program Manager Christopher Heller. “Software developers use it for prototyping, debugging and documentation, while business and financial analysts will use it as a tool for making data-driven decisions.

“Researchers in various scientific disciplines can use Jupyter for data exploration, simulations and experimentation. Essentially, anyone who wants an interactive and versatile environment for combining code, data and documentation can benefit from Jupyter Notebooks.”

Jupyter Notebooks available through Illinois Computes – hosted from NCSA’s research cloud system Radiant – are intended for research usage only and not intended to serve as instructional tools. Click here for more information and get started using Jupyter Notebooks.

Illinois Computes offers computing and data storage resources, technical expertise and support services to researchers from all domains across the UIUC campus at little to no cost. Through the campus-funded program, NCSA will learn what additional assets are needed to fulfill the computing demands of the university and adjust the cyberinfrastructure strategy while continuing to make access to systems, interdisciplinary and technical knowledge, and support infrastructure easy to obtain. Illinois Computes removes barriers for all Illinois researchers – especially those typically underserved – to access NCSA’s growing assemblage of research computing tools and world-class staff, furthering their innovative and novel work while ensuring NCSA is a leader in the global research community.

Check out the Illinois Computes website for more information or to get involved.

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