Imperial College Research Software Community Newsletter - November 2019

Hello Imperial RSEs!

Winter is coDing!

In anticipation of the upcoming holidays, what is the best way to stay warm and cosy indoors while winter’s weather starts to bYte? But coding, of course! Writing comfortably in your beloved programming language or boldly discovering new tools and opportunities.

Due to holidays, this month’s list of events is unsurprisingly short. Nonetheless, Imperial’s RS community has something for you to attend, read, try. And exciting news for the coming year, 2020! Everything needed to get ready for winter!

What Did I Miss?

20th November: The first NL-RSE conference was held at the Johan Cruijff Arena, Amsterdam, on the 20th of November. Two representatives from Imperial College attended and contributed: you can read a brief report of the event by our RS Community member Mark Woodbridge.

Full details of the event can be found on the conference pages.

Upcoming Events and Deadlines

1st December: This year’s Advent of Code commences! Whether you aspire to learn a new programming language, keep your brain active over the Christmas break, or simply spend some quality time thinking about something other than work then this is your chance. All whilst optionally competing (or cooperating) with others at Imperial by joining our College leaderboard (enter code 194474-115405e0). You don’t need to start on the 1st and there’s no time limit to any of the puzzles - which are consistently entertaining but do get increasingly challenging through the month!

5th/6th December: Computing Insight UK 2019 will once again take place at Manchester Central.

6th December: The deadline for abstract submissions for RSLondonSouthEast2020. See the Call for Submissions for more information.

8th December: Application deadline for the eLife Innovation Leaders programme.

12th December: We want to celebrate the end of another great year of building research software with Imperial’s RS Community at the 1st Research Software Winter Seminars and Roundtable event! Open to anyone, the event will take place from 15:30-18:00 on Thursday 12th December and will feature short talks from the members of the community on their research software-related achievements and highlights from 2019, followed by a chance to chat to other community members over drinks. We will also discuss plans for the future, what resources you would like to have access to, what members would like to see from the community in 2020 and how we can make this happen. Details on how to register for the event will be sent out to the community mailing list soon.

13th December: Deadline for paper submission at the 2020 International Workshop on Software Engineering for Computational Science.

Save the Dates

9th-10th January 2020: DevOps for better software and reproducible research sprint London. An open event for RSEs, researchers and those interested in making research software more robust through DevOps, CI/CD, testing, and automation among other practices.

27th-28th January 2020: EPCC will be coming to Imperial College to give a class on advanced MPI. Registration is now open.

6th February 2020: The 2nd annual workshop of the London and South East of England research software community (RSLondonSouthEast 2020) will take place at the Royal Society in London. Registration is now open.

26th/28th February 2020 and 18th/20th March 2020: Next term the Research Computing Service will be running two new software engineering courses through the Graduate School. These will focus on the tools and techniques of modern software development that are applicable across research disciplines and programming languages. The lessons are entitled “Using Git to Code, Collaborate and Share” and “Essential Software Engineering for Researchers”. Only basic programming experience is required to attend either course and like other Graduate School courses you receive credit towards completion of your programme. For more details and to reserve a place see here.

31st March-2st April 2020: Collaborations Workshop 2020 (CW20), Belfast. The Software Sustainability Institute’s hands-on annual workshop that brings together people with an interest in research software, from across academia and industry. Registration is now open.

3rd-5th June 2020: 2020 International Workshop on Software Engineering for Computational Science, Amsterdam.

Research Software News

Research Software of the Month

CPL library is a communications and topology management system for coupling any continuum fluid dynamics (CFD) solver to any molecular dynamics (MD) code. A full tutorial and example codes written in Python, C++ and Fortran are provided with CPL library. Their purpose is to provide templates that are easily replaced by the user with any CFD or MD code of their choice.

If you want to give it a try without the hassle of the installation, you can use the complete version of CPL library available for Docker. The base image includes mpich and all Python bindings to run all the examples and tests. If you want to deploy CPL library on a supercomputer or linux distribution, the latest version of CPL library can be downloaded from GitHub.

The CPL library has been developed in the Tribology group of Imperial College (Mechanical Engineering department), and is available under GPLv3.

Each month we highlight a piece of research software that is being used or developed at Imperial. If you have a suggestion of some software that you’d like to see us feature, please email

RSE Bytes

Your Monthly Reminder…

Get in Touch, Get Involved!

That’s all for this month, and thanks to everyone who suggested links for this edition. If you’d like anything included in the newsletter, have ideas about how it could be improved, or would even like to guest-edit a future edition then drop us a line at And if you’re reading this on the web and would like to receive the next newsletter directly to your inbox then please subscribe to our RSE Community Mailing List here.

This issue of the Research Software Community Newsletter was edited by Stefano Galvan