Here's a collection of highlights, selected totally subjectively, from this week's HPC news stream as reported at insideHPC.com and HPCwire.
>>10 words and a link
Open MPI 1.2 was announced this week,
Sailboat beats Internet in petabyte race across the Pacific Ocean,
New FPGA-based supercomputer in Scotland, performance with lower power,
John W. Backus, father of FORTRAN, dies at age 82,
Intel goes to work capturing imagination for 80-core chip,
>>New SaaS infrastructure built on Amazon
rPath focuses on allowing software as a service vendors to build their own walled gardens to control their users' experience without having to build massive infrastructure (full article at http://www.supercomputingonline.com/article.php?sid=13293):
“It will work like this: software developers use rBuilder to build an Amazon Machine Image (AMI) that is stored using the Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3). Then, with a single click, rBuilder and rBuilder Online users can boot their software appliances on Amazon EC2. No more waiting for downloads or fighting with complex installation procedures. Software appliances plus Amazon EC2 deliver software value without the hassles — on-demand.”
More control can be a powerful force in controlling the user experience (as we've seen with Apple), and the offering is an interesting step in the SaaS approach. It will be fun to see if either catches on.
So, apparently it's not just me who thinks that Intel's marketing machine should get extra credit for distorting reality.
The Register on Saturday ran a story covering AMD's realization that Intel's marketing team ran all over them when they welded two chips together and called it a quad core:
“If I could do something different, I wish we would have immediately done a MCM — two dual cores and call it a quad-core,” said Mario Rivas, an EVP at AMD, during a recent interview in Austin, “because, I guess, the market sucks it up.”
The Register's full article is here: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/03/17/amd_rivas_barcelona/.
>>Black holes, the universe, and PSC
As everyone knows the only thing cooler than lasers is a black hole — if we could just get that laser-based supercomputer doing black hole simulations, I could stop waiting for a Pink Floyd reunion tour.
“Massive black holes are thought to have formed in the early universe and have grown in mass by swallowing large amounts of interstellar matter. Simulations by Di Matteo and colleagues with PSC's Cray XT3 uncovered previously unknown relationships between the mass of black holes and the galaxies in which they reside and show that black holes have an important effect on the architecture and evolution of the cosmos.”
The full story at PSC's website has pics and a movie, http://www.psc.edu/science/2006/blackhole/.
John West summarizes the headlines in HPC every day at insideHPC.com, and writes on leadership and career issues for technology professionals at InfoWorld and on his own blog at onlytraitofaleader.com. You can contact him at [email protected].