Vol 9. Issue 20 / June 29, 2009

Bill Young

Position: Associate director and chief of technical computing, Information Technology Services

Responsibilities: Supporting Scripps Research scientists by managing the high-performance computing clusters on the La Jolla, California campus. Overseeing the computer archive (backup) system of about 1,500 computers for groups signed up for this service.

Started at Scripps Research: September 1999

Background: Undergraduate degree from the University of Buffalo in Chemistry, M.A. from University of Buffalo in Chemistry, Ph.D. from Carnegie Mellon University in Chemistry, and postdoctoral fellowships at the University of Houston and the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center.  Prior to joining Scripps Research, Young worked at a software development company in Sorrento Valley.

Goals: "Keeping things moving forward." Young notes that 10 years ago the institute had 160 processors for two research groups, which focused on theoretical problems in molecular biology. Now, there are almost 4,000 processors for more than 40 research groups, which study issues in proteomics, genomics, and structural biology, among other fields. Young notes that these developments have not only required new, more powerful technology, but also new ways of using it.

Science in Action: One example of a project made possible by the Scripps Research computing clusters is this video illustrating the assembly of the infection machinery of P22, a virus that infects bacteria. The video's creator Gabe Lander of the Carragher lab says, "The movie itself was made on my Mac, but all data processing to arrive at the structure was done on the Scripps clusters." [Note: the video may take some time to load.]

Hobbies: Young enjoys riding his bicycle (including sometimes for his commute to Scripps Research from Carmel Valley) and taking photographs, especially of natural settings such as in the Sierras.


Send comments to: mikaono[at]scripps.edu


Bill Young manages the computer clusters that Scripps Research scientists use for computationally intensive research.