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November 23, 2007

The Week in Review

by John E. West

Here’s a collection of highlights, selected totally subjectively, from this week’s HPC news stream as reported at and HPCwire.

>>10 words and a link

NVIDIA posts news of first $1B quarter;

SGI minority shareholder presses board for sale to competitor;

Google building own 10GbE switches in secret?

Bull Announces New Power6 Based Blade;

Livermore team wins Gordon Bell prize;

LNXI announces Solution Center for mid market customers;

>> Student challenge: prizes for using HPC to address world’s problems

Microsoft UK has launched a new competition that highlights HPC’s power to transform lives.

The HPC Challenge is a High Performance Computing competition committed to helping the brightest minds in the UK innovatively solve the World’s toughest problems. The competition is open now to UK based higher education organisations and the first phase closes on 14th December 2007. Terms and conditions apply, students can register at

The winners of the competition will receive £5,000 for their team and £5,000 for their institution; 5 runners up will get £2,000 each. You can find more information at

>> AMD gets cash infusion from Abu Dhabi firm; CEO heading for the door?

In a sign that it is facing increasing financial pressure, PCWorld reported on Friday of last week (,139765/article.html) that AMD has taken a $622M investment from Mubadala Development Company, an investment company based in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

According to the article:

AMD Mubadala bought 49 million newly-issued shares of AMD, although the investment does not put the development company on AMD’s board of directors, AMD said.

In October, AMD reported a net loss of $396 million for the third quarter, compared to net income of $136 million a year earlier. It was the company’s fourth straight quarterly loss.

By the way, this investment gets Mubadala an 8.1 percent stake in AMD. reported this week on speculation that AMD CEO Hector Ruiz is on the way out:

Speculation has been heightened by recent events, including the exit of investor relations head Mike Hasse, and the September departure of sales chief Henri Richard.

Last week, President Dirk Meyer was appointed to the company’s board.

Add it all up, and some believe the signs point to a possible change at the top, with Ruiz stepping down, and Meyer taking over.

Read the whole story at

>> The Green Top500 list

I’ve been checking this Web site regularly for a long time, so I’m happy to report that the Green500 list is out! Congratulations guys.

From their site:

The inaugural Green500 List was announced on November 15, 2007 at SC|07. As a complement to the TOP500, the unveiling of the Green500 ushers in a new era where supercomputers can be compared by performance-per-watt.

The ERDC MSRC (my site) is number 145 with its Cray XT3; the top slots are dominated by the Blue Gene. Take a look at the whole list at

>> RedHat and Platform Announce Partnership

RedHat has announced it has partnered with Platform Computing to jointly offer a new product geared toward HPC, the RedHat HPC solution. The new product will fully integrate the Platform’s Open Cluster Stack and RedHat Enterprise Linux.

“Platform’s 15 years of expertise deploying high-performance clusters, combined with the performance and stability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, provide a perfect technology match for customers looking for an HPC solution,” said Paul Cormier, executive vice president, Worldwide Engineering at Red Hat.

The package includes RedHat Enterprise Linux, Platform OCS tools, Platform Lava batch scheduler and a series of drivers relevant to operating a clusters with high performance interconnects.

Read the full story at


John West is part of the team that summarizes the headlines in HPC news every day at You can contact him at