New Mexico Supercomputing Challenge
Supercomputing: Pushing the limits of "standard" computing du jour.

Kickoff Conference
Computing for the Future

The Kickoff Conference at the New Mexico Tech in Socorro will be held on October 11-12.

For each student and teacher attending the Kickoff, the Supercomputing Challenge will provide room and board. Attendance at the Kickoff is not required for participation in the Challenge. Attendance at the Kickoff will be limited to 350 students.

Saturday Lunch time speaker, Stephanie Forrest from UNM

Stephanie's talk is titled: Modeling Cybersecurity Interventions

Stephanie Forrest is Regents Distinguished Professor of Computer Science at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, and a member of the Santa Fe Institute External Faculty. She recently returned to New Mexico after serving as a Jefferson Science Fellow at the U.S. Dept. of State working on Cyber Policy. Her interdisciplinary research studies adaptive systems and includes biological modeling (immunology and evolutionary processes), computer security, and software engineering. Professor Forrest received M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Computer and Communication Sciences from the University of Michigan and a B.A. from St. John's College. Before joining UNM in 1990 she worked for Teknowledge Inc. and was a Director's Fellow at the Center for Nonlinear Studies, Los Alamos National Laboratory. At UNM, she served as Dept. Chair 2006-2011, and at SFI she has served as Interim Vice President for Academic Affairs and Co-Chair of the Science Board. In 2011 she received the ACM/AAAI Allen Newell Award, and in 2009 she shared the IFIP TC2 Manfred Paul Award for Excellence in Software with three others.

Professor Forrest directs the Adaptive Computation Laboratory at UNM, where she studies adaptive systems, including genetic algorithms, computational immunology, biological modeling, automated software repair, and computer security. She is also a member of the Program in Interdisciplinary Biological & Biomedical Science (PIBBS) and the Center for Evolutionary and Theoretical Immunology (CETI).

Dinner time speaker, Matt Wallaert from Microsoft

Matt's talk is titled: Coding for Meaning: Why We Build What We Build

Matt Wallaert will speak on Saturday night. Matt Wallaert is a behavioral scientist working at the intersection of technology and human behavior. After several years in academia and two successful startups, he joined Microsoft, where he leads a team of experts who work both internally and externally to use technology and science (including his specialty, social psychology) to help people live happier, healthier lives. Wallaert maintains an active research lab and is a frequent speaker on the science of behavior change. Notable projects at Microsoft include launching Klingon into the Bing Translator and creating Bing in the Classroom, which promotes digital literacy in K-12 schools. Externally, he sits on the board a variety of startups and non-profits, and cultivates pro-social side projects like, which has helped underpaid women ask for and earn millions of dollars in salary increases.

Sunday Lunch time speaker, Stephen Guerin

Stephen will talk about:
Getting Computers to See: some easy approaches for basic machine vision projects

Stephen Guerin is the principal in RedfishGroup, a research and development company in Santa Fe, NM. Stephen serves as the CEO of Simtable, a product spinout from RedfishGroup. He also lectures as as faculty member of Santa Fe Institute's Complex System Summer School.

Simtable produces interactive simulations for firefighters and emergency managers that are projected onto physical 3D sandtables. Over 50 Simtables are deployed - mostly in the western US.

RedfishGroup takes on research projects in the areas of agent-based modeling, human computer interaction, and ambient computing (spatial augmented reality). Stephen formed RedfishGroup in 1991 with his father, John Guerin and third partner, Robert Hall. At that time, Redfish focused on commercial desktop publishing and later moved into desktop video editing and computer generated animation. Stephen moved to Beijing in 1994 to develop online Chinese language learning tools during the first years of the web. RedfishGroup went on to provide web services to embassies, multinational and Chinese firms with presences in Beijing and Shanghai. RedfishGroup was one of the first commercial companies with servers on the Chinese internet behind "The Great Firewall of China" - a phrase Stephen had a part in coining.

After returning from China in 1997, Stephen spent a few years of research in Cognitive Science looking for applications to distributed software systems. Stephen served as Senior Software Developer at BiosGroup where he participated as a member of Dr. Stuart Kauffman's research group where he focused on new approaches to realizing artificial life in software. In the late 2000s, Stephen was the founder of the non-profit science/tech/art lab called the Santa Fe Complex.

Stephen lives in Santa Fe with his wife, Alison, and their two sons.

Teachers' classes


The general schedule. Here are the detailed schedules.


Housing will be provided at local hotels in Socorro on a first come first served basis.

  • America's Best Value Inn housing list:
    Portales, Rio Rancho Cyber Acad, Sat Sci & Math Acad, School of Dreams Academy, St Michaels, St Pius X, Taos Charter, Taos High, The Masters Program
  • Comfort Inn housing list:
    Choices Alternative, Clovis, East Mountain, Jackson Middle School, Los Alamos High, Los Alamos Mid, Mountain Elem, Melrose High, Melrose Mid, NM School for the Arts
  • Econo Lodge housing list:
    Albuquerque Academy, Aldo Leopold, Capital High, ATC, Desert Academy, Espanola Valley, Explora, Gadsden, Lordsburg, Los Lunas, Miyamura, Monte del Sol, Pojoaque, NexGen Acad, Santa Fe
  • Super 8 housing list:
    Centennial, Freedom High, Las Cruces High, Las Cruces YWiC, Mesa Mid, Picacho Mid
  • Unknown hotel housing list:


Remember that Supercomputing Challenge teams need to bring a Proposal with you to the Kickoff. See Proposal hints. A Proposal template is to be filled out for each team.

Be sure you have registered for the Supercomputing Challenge.

Class materials


Check out the team pictures from the Kickoff, and the some class pictures from the Kickoff. Get the school/team pictures to your yearbook staff.

To learn more about previous years' kickoffs, visit our archive

For questions about the Supercomputing Challenge, a 501(c)3 organization, contact us at: consult1415 @

New Mexico Supercomputing Challenge, Inc.
80 Cascabel Street
Los Alamos, New Mexico 87544
(505) 667-2864

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