For the first time, developers and users of OpenFPM, a scalable and open C++ framework for scientific computing, met at the Center for Systems Biology Dresden (CSBD), located next to the MPI-CBG, on February 9 and 10, 2023. The meeting initiated the formation of a global community around OpenFPM as an open-source project for interdisciplinary computational research with participants from Dresden, Munich, and New York City. The framework offers a set of common and reusable software building blocks that computational scientists can use, extend, or customize for specific applications. As a result, they do not have to start from scratch every time they write a code, effectively reducing code development times in scientific research from months or years to days or weeks, providing enormous productivity gains.
During the hackathon in Dresden, 20 participants got to know the core developers of OpenFPM in person and were able to review and produce code and synchronize contributions. The Hackathon also welcomed people with little or no coding skills who contributed to the OpenFPM documentation, tutorials, or the OpenFPM web page. The two-day event was organized by Ivo Sbalzarini, Professor of Scientific Computing for Systems Biology at the TU Dresden, Research Group Leader at the MPI-CBG, and Dean of the Faculty of Computer Science at the TU Dresden. He was very happy with the atmosphere and the outcome of the event, stating, “It was absolutely fascinating to witness how an initial group of loosely connected users and developers developed into a tight-knit community of likeminded friends within the two days of intense, full-immersion coding. The productivity was phenomenal, and we are grateful to MPI-CBG for allowing us to host this event.”
Website of OpenFM: http://openfpm.mpi-cbg.de/