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Programmability Matters

Jun 30, 2014 |

While discussions of HPC architectures have long centered on performance gains, that is not the only measure of success, according to Petteri Laakso of Vector Fabrics. Spurred by ever-proliferating core counts, programmability is taking on new prominence. Vector Fabrics is a Netherlands-based company that specializes in multicore software parallelization tools, so programmability is high on Read more…

A Shot of Java to Send Accelerators Mainstream

Sep 5, 2013 |

When it comes to mainstream adoption of the use of GPUs and other accelerators, one of the primary barriers lies in programmability. While the vendor communities around accelerators have pushed to flatten the learning curve, the fact remains that it takes special effort on the part of ordinary developers to undertake the educational process. In this in-depth audio feature, we talk to Rice University researcher, Max Grossman about how Java…

The Week in HPC Research

Mar 7, 2013 |

<img src=”http://media2.hpcwire.com/hpcwire/future_insight_200x.jpg” alt=”” width=”100″ height=”58″ />The top research stories of the week include novel methods of data race detection; a comparison of predictive laws; a review of FPGA’s promise; GPU virtualization using PCI Direct pass-through; and an analysis of the Amazon Web Services High-IO platform.

Latest FPGAs Show Big Gains in Floating Point Performance

Apr 16, 2012 |

<img style=”float: left;” src=”http://media2.hpcwire.com/hpcwire/V72000T_chip.jpg” alt=”” width=”105″ height=”77″ />Thanks to shrinking semiconductor process geometries, the newest FPGAs have more usable transistors than ever before and are now capable of considerable floating point (FP) performance. That makes them candidates for more generalized use in high performance computing. This article describes the FP capabilities of Xilinx’s new Virtex-7 FPGA and how it stacks up against a generic 16-core CPU.

Revisiting Supercomputer Architectures

Dec 8, 2011 |

Additional performance increases for supercomputers are being confounded by three walls: the power wall, the memory wall and the datacenter wall (the “wall wall”). To overcome these hurdles, the market is currently looking to a combination of four strategies: parallel applications development, adding accelerators to standard commodity compute nodes, developing new purpose-built systems, and waiting for a technology breakthrough.

Nimbix Aims to Accelerate HPC Cloud Adoption

Nov 23, 2011 |

It’s been a little over a year since Nimbix announced the initial beta launch of its Nimbix Accelerated Compute Cloud (NACC). During the SC11 show in Seattle last week, HPC in the Cloud sat down with Nimbix Co-Founder and CEO Steve Hebert to find out where the company fits in with the small-but-growing stable of cloud providers who specialize in supporting HPC workloads.

Startup Aims to Transform HPC Programming

Aug 11, 2011 |

Indiana-based MNB Technologies is a small company with big aspirations. The soon-to-be-public corporation is developing an expert-system based development suite designed to greatly simplify the programming of HPC accelerators, in particular FPGAs and GPU. To that end, the company recently announced the beta availability of its flagship product, hprcARCHITECT.

Maxeler Carves High-End Niche with HPC Acceleration Business

Mar 10, 2011 |

Acceleration technology is all the rage these days in high performance computing. With the emergence of GPGPUs into the mainstream, a whole new sub-industry has coalesced around acceleration solutions based on the latest GPUs. Maxeler Technologies, however, has made a nice living delivering FPGA acceleration to a rather elite customer base.

The Expanding Floating-Point Performance Gap Between FPGAs and Microprocessors

Nov 22, 2010 |

For the past several years, Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) have been getting large enough to compete with microprocessors in floating-point performance. Using the theoretical peak performance numbers, the FPGA’s floating-point performance is growing faster than microprocessors. This article calculates the peak performance for several FPGA devices from Xilinx and compares them to a reference microprocessor for equivalent time periods and shows that this gap in performance is growing.

Convey Debuts Second-Generation Hybrid-Core Platform

Nov 9, 2010 |

In an HPC market that seems determined to go down the CPU-GPU path, upstart Convey Computer may yet offer a few surprises. The company today unveiled the sequel to its HC-1 platform it introduced in 2008. Called the HC-1ex, the new system adds a lot more performance and capability, but retains the original x86-FPGA co-processor design.