The Week in Review

By Tiffany Trader

September 9, 2010

Dell HPC Solutions Enable Research from Leading Higher Education, Government and Industry Labs

NASA High-End Computing Testbed Runs over National LambdaRail

Fujitsu SynfiniWay V4 Enables Distributed HPC

Solarflare Announces New Value-Added Reseller Program

Virginia Bioinformatics Institute Launches New Industrial Affiliates Program

Acceleware, Microsoft Announce CUDA/OpenCL Fall 2010 Training Schedule

Solarflare Announces New Midrange Server Adapters

Appro Deploys 324-node/100 Teraflops System to San Diego Supercomputing Center

Latest Xilinx FPGA Gets NSA Approval for High-Grade Cryptographic Processing

Oracle Hires Mark Hurd as President

Infinera Partners in US UCAN Broadband Network

University at Buffalo Selects XtremeData’s dbX Data Warehousing Appliance

IBM to Ship World’s Fastest Microprocessor

MathWorks Announces Release 2010b of the MATLAB and Simulink Product Families

Computing for Clean Water

Volunteer computing is still going strong as evidenced by an announcement this week from IBM’s World Community Grid. The worldwide network of personal computers is being used in several projects all focused on developing techniques that will lead to better water quality. These projects could not be more timely or necessary as clean water is in desperately short supply for over 1.2 billion people.

From the release:

To accelerate the pace, lower the expense, and increase the precision of these projects, scientists will harness the IBM-supported World Community Grid to perform online simulations, crunch numbers, and pose hypothetical scenarios. The processing power is provided by a grid of 1.5 million PCs from 600,000 volunteers around the world. These PCs perform computations for scientists when the machines would otherwise be underutilized. Scientists also use World Community Grid — equivalent to one of the world’s fastest supercomputers — to engineer cleaner energy, cure disease and produce healthier food staples.

One initiative aims to find ways to filter pathogens that cause disease from the water and another is trying to uncover how human behaviors affect water quality. Another group, based in Brazil, is looking to cure schistosomiasis, a parasite-based disease found in tropical regions and spread by contaminated water.

Stanley S. Litow, IBM vice president of Corporate Citizenship & Corporate Affairs and president of IBM’s Foundation, commented on the program:

“I can think of few endeavors more important than making sure people across the globe have ready access to clean water. I would even suggest that it’s a basic human right, and a hallmark of sophisticated and compassionate societies everywhere. That’s why IBM is so incredibly proud to help scientists harness the resources of World Community Grid to make strides in this vital arena.”

I couldn’t agree more.

The World Community grid relies on the unused cycles of its volunteers’ computers to help solve humanitarian projects. If you’d like to add your computer to this project, sign up at www.worldcommunitygrid.org.

China’s First Petaflop System Up and Running

People’s Daily reported late last week that China’s first petaflop supercomputer is now fully assembled and running at the National Supercomputing Center in Tianjin. Named Tianhe-1, which means River in the Sky, the system is scheduled to undergo debugging and testing this month.

The supercomputer, housed 13 computer cabinets, employs a hybrid design, where GPUs are used as accelerators. Its 2,560 compute nodes each contain two Xeon processors and two AMD GPUs, for a total of 71,680 cores. (For a deeper explanation of core counts, check out this blog.) Tianhe-1 achieves Linpack values of 563.1 sustained teraflops and 1.2 petaflops peak theoretical performance.

The article gives a real world comparison of all that computing power:

One second of calculations conducted by Tianhe-1 is equivalent to 88 consecutive years of calculations by 1.3 billion people, and the data that the supercomputer can store is equivalent to the sum of the collections in four national libraries with 27 million books each.

Tianhe-1 was developed by the Changsha-based National University of Defense Technology in 2009 and is China’s first domestically-made petaflop supercomputer. It was ranked seventh on the latest TOP500 list. The machine will be used for a variety of high-performance applications in the fields of animation and rendering, biomedical research, aircraft simulation, petroleum exploration, data analysis for financial engineering, weather forecasting, and general science.

If you’re still craving deeper insight into the Tianhe-1, there’s a good primer at the TOP500 site, here.

Myricom Gets New CEO

This week Myricom announced that it had named co-founder Nanette (Nan) Boden as president and chief executive officer. Boden was promoted from her position as CFO, and replaces Chuck Seitz, another of Myricom’s founders.

From the release:

Since helping found Myricom in 1994, Nan Boden has participated in nearly every aspect of Myricom’s operations. She was named Executive Vice President in 1999, CFO in 2001, and CEO in 2010. Nan has been a member of Myricom’s Board of Directors since 2001. She received her M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), and her B.S. degree in Applied Mathematics from the University of Alabama.

Myricom, a Caltech spin-off, made its foray into the 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE) field providing HPC interconnect technology for high-end clusters and supercomputers, but has since branched out into more mainstream networking applications. With its fourth generation of networking products, Myri-10G, the company delivers 10GbE solutions for specialized vertical markets, such as financial trading, packet capture, video streaming and IPTV, and HPC.

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Infographic Highlights Career of Admiral Grace Murray Hopper

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Ganthier, Turkel on the Dell EMC Road Ahead

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AWS Embraces FPGAs, ‘Elastic’ GPUs

December 2, 2016

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AWS Launches Massive 100 Petabyte ‘Sneakernet’

December 1, 2016

Amazon Web Services now offers a way to move data into its cloud by the truckload. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Weekly Twitter Roundup (Dec. 1, 2016)

December 1, 2016

Here at HPCwire, we aim to keep the HPC community apprised of the most relevant and interesting news items that get tweeted throughout the week. Read more…

By Thomas Ayres

HPC Career Notes (Dec. 2016)

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Lighting up Aurora: Behind the Scenes at the Creation of the DOE’s Upcoming 200 Petaflops Supercomputer

December 1, 2016

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IBM and NSF Computing Pioneer Erich Bloch Dies at 91

November 30, 2016

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Ganthier, Turkel on the Dell EMC Road Ahead

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Who is Dell EMC and why should you care? Glad you asked is Jim Ganthier’s quick response. Ganthier is SVP for validated solutions and high performance computing for the new (even bigger) technology giant Dell EMC following Dell’s acquisition of EMC in September. In this case, says Ganthier, the blending of the two companies is a 1+1 = 5 proposition. Not bad math if you can pull it off. Read more…

By John Russell

AWS Launches Massive 100 Petabyte ‘Sneakernet’

December 1, 2016

Amazon Web Services now offers a way to move data into its cloud by the truckload. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Lighting up Aurora: Behind the Scenes at the Creation of the DOE’s Upcoming 200 Petaflops Supercomputer

December 1, 2016

In April 2015, U.S. Department of Energy Undersecretary Franklin Orr announced that Intel would be the prime contractor for Aurora: Read more…

By Jan Rowell

Seagate-led SAGE Project Delivers Update on Exascale Goals

November 29, 2016

Roughly a year and a half after its launch, the SAGE exascale storage project led by Seagate has delivered a substantive interim report – Data Storage for Extreme Scale. Read more…

By John Russell

Nvidia Sees Bright Future for AI Supercomputing

November 23, 2016

Graphics chipmaker Nvidia made a strong showing at SC16 in Salt Lake City last week. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

HPE-SGI to Tackle Exascale and Enterprise Targets

November 22, 2016

At first blush, and maybe second blush too, Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s (HPE) purchase of SGI seems like an unambiguous win-win. SGI’s advanced shared memory technology, its popular UV product line (Hanna), deep vertical market expertise, and services-led go-to-market capability all give HPE a leg up in its drive to remake itself. Bear in mind HPE came into existence just a year ago with the split of Hewlett-Packard. The computer landscape, including HPC, is shifting with still unclear consequences. One wonders who’s next on the deal block following Dell’s recent merger with EMC. Read more…

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Intel Details AI Hardware Strategy for Post-GPU Age

November 21, 2016

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By Alex Woodie

SC Says Farewell to Salt Lake City, See You in Denver

November 18, 2016

After an intense four-day flurry of activity (and a cold snap that brought some actual snow flurries), the SC16 show floor closed yesterday (Thursday) and the always-extensive technical program wound down today. Read more…

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Why 2016 Is the Most Important Year in HPC in Over Two Decades

August 23, 2016

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IBM Advances Against x86 with Power9

August 30, 2016

After offering OpenPower Summit attendees a limited preview in April, IBM is unveiling further details of its next-gen CPU, Power9, which the tech mainstay is counting on to regain market share ceded to rival Intel. Read more…

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AWS Beats Azure to K80 General Availability

September 30, 2016

Amazon Web Services has seeded its cloud with Nvidia Tesla K80 GPUs to meet the growing demand for accelerated computing across an increasingly-diverse range of workloads. The P2 instance family is a welcome addition for compute- and data-focused users who were growing frustrated with the performance limitations of Amazon's G2 instances, which are backed by three-year-old Nvidia GRID K520 graphics cards. Read more…

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Think Fast – Is Neuromorphic Computing Set to Leap Forward?

August 15, 2016

Steadily advancing neuromorphic computing technology has created high expectations for this fundamentally different approach to computing. Read more…

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The Exascale Computing Project Awards $39.8M to 22 Projects

September 7, 2016

The Department of Energy’s Exascale Computing Project (ECP) hit an important milestone today with the announcement of its first round of funding, moving the nation closer to its goal of reaching capable exascale computing by 2023. Read more…

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HPE Gobbles SGI for Larger Slice of $11B HPC Pie

August 11, 2016

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ARM Unveils Scalable Vector Extension for HPC at Hot Chips

August 22, 2016

ARM and Fujitsu today announced a scalable vector extension (SVE) to the ARMv8-A architecture intended to enhance ARM capabilities in HPC workloads. Fujitsu is the lead silicon partner in the effort (so far) and will use ARM with SVE technology in its post K computer, Japan’s next flagship supercomputer planned for the 2020 timeframe. This is an important incremental step for ARM, which seeks to push more aggressively into mainstream and HPC server markets. Read more…

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IBM Debuts Power8 Chip with NVLink and Three New Systems

September 8, 2016

Not long after revealing more details about its next-gen Power9 chip due in 2017, IBM today rolled out three new Power8-based Linux servers and a new version of its Power8 chip featuring Nvidia’s NVLink interconnect. Read more…

By John Russell

Leading Solution Providers

Vectors: How the Old Became New Again in Supercomputing

September 26, 2016

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By Lynd Stringer

US, China Vie for Supercomputing Supremacy

November 14, 2016

The 48th edition of the TOP500 list is fresh off the presses and while there is no new number one system, as previously teased by China, there are a number of notable entrants from the US and around the world and significant trends to report on. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Intel Launches Silicon Photonics Chip, Previews Next-Gen Phi for AI

August 18, 2016

At the Intel Developer Forum, held in San Francisco this week, Intel Senior Vice President and General Manager Diane Bryant announced the launch of Intel's Silicon Photonics product line and teased a brand-new Phi product, codenamed "Knights Mill," aimed at machine learning workloads. Read more…

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CPU Benchmarking: Haswell Versus POWER8

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With OpenPOWER activity ramping up and IBM’s prominent role in the upcoming DOE machines Summit and Sierra, it’s a good time to look at how the IBM POWER CPU stacks up against the x86 Xeon Haswell CPU from Intel. Read more…

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Beyond von Neumann, Neuromorphic Computing Steadily Advances

March 21, 2016

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By John Russell

Dell EMC Engineers Strategy to Democratize HPC

September 29, 2016

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Container App ‘Singularity’ Eases Scientific Computing

October 20, 2016

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Micron, Intel Prepare to Launch 3D XPoint Memory

August 16, 2016

Micron Technology used last week’s Flash Memory Summit to roll out its new line of 3D XPoint memory technology jointly developed with Intel while demonstrating the technology in solid-state drives. Micron claimed its Quantx line delivers PCI Express (PCIe) SSD performance with read latencies at less than 10 microseconds and writes at less than 20 microseconds. Read more…

By George Leopold

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