Women in Energy: Rinku Gupta
Rinku Gupta received a B.E. in computer engineering from Mumbai University in India and an M.S. degree in computer information science from The Ohio State University in 2002, with an emphasis on collective communication using remote memory operations on clusters. For the next five years, she worked as a systems engineer and advisor in the Scalable Systems Group at Dell, where she focused on high-performance computing clusters and helped develop a cluster software package for Dell HPC platforms. In 2008, she joined Argonne as a senior software developer, and she currently is a principal software development specialist in the Mathematics and Computer Science Division.
Gupta’s expertise in software design, tool development and distributed computing has made her well known in the international community. She served as lead engineer for the CIFTS (Coordinated Infrastructure for Fault-Tolerance Systems) project and was lead developer for the fault tolerance backplane on the IBM Blue Gene/L and Blue Gene/P systems. She was also a key leader in defining the comparative architecture experiments and the most insightful application metrics, performance metrics and performance tools used in the 10X10 Exascale studies. The data she gathered ultimately led to a research paper that won a best paper award the High Performance Computing ’13 conference. Gupta is married and has one child.
What do you do?
I research and develop software for improving fault tolerance and resiliency of high-performance clusters and supercomputers.
What is the best part of your job?
The best part is working with smart people who are passionate about their jobs and conducting cutting-edge research that will impact generations of supercomputers to come.
What inspires you?
I like the fact that not everyone can do what I do. I believe that supercomputers will impact research in every domain of our lives and my work is directly (and sometimes indirectly) helping build the foundation on which these machines will survive.
When did you first consider pursuing a degree in STEM?
When I was in 10th grade and was introduced to computers.
When you felt like giving up, what did you do? Who did you talk to?
In college, I felt like giving up my studies in STEM when I hated some of my coursework (advanced trigonometry, engineering mechanics). At that time, I just slogged it out and cleared those exams. There really has been no specific instance during my career when I have felt like giving up STEM. When I grew impatient and dissatisfied with any of my previous jobs, I just moved away from them to more promising venues.
What would you share with a student who wishes to pursue a career in your field?
If you want to have a career in high-performance computing, make sure you get the correct foundation. Become familiar with the theory during your undergraduate years. Become familiar with the “actual research” in your field. Go to a good school and, more importantly, work with a good professor (who has good students) to gain experience.