The Week in Review

By Tiffany Trader

November 4, 2010

Here is a collection of highlights from this week’s news stream as reported by HPCwire.

SDSC Part of DARPA Program to Deliver Extreme Scale Supercomputer

NASA to Demo 40/100-Gigabit Networking at SC10

Large Hadron Collider Pauses Protons, Looks Ahead to Lead

QLogic, Platform Computing Integrate Management Software

SGI Unveils Performance and Managment Software Suites

University of Texas at Austin Breaks Ground on Gates Computer Science Complex and Dell Hall

Altair Unveils PBS Professional 11.0

SCinet Research Sandbox to Demonstrate Unprecedented HPC Industry Collaboration

Supercomputer Models Yield Sneak Previews of NASA’s Webb Space Telescope

EU Launches Project to Develop Technologies for Heterogeneous Platforms

‘Big Data’ Supercomputing Analytics Becomes Focus for New Company

Mechdyne CAVE To Be Featured on Discovery Science Channel

Swedish Bank Deploys Middleware from Platform Computing

HPC Advisory Council Reaches Publication of over 50 Best Practices and Guidelines

IBM Awards Powerful Computing System to University of Lugano

Johns Hopkins Builds Data Mining Super Machine

While most supercomputing designs nowadays are focused on achieving a maximum number of FLOPS (floating point operations per second), researchers at Johns Hopkins University are designing a scientific instrument that will enable a maximum number of IOPS (I/O operations per second). This novel architecture will be better suited to analyzing the enormous amounts of data that today’s science generates.

Dubbed the Data-Scope, the machine is currently being developed by a group led by computer scientist and astrophysicist Alexander Szalay of Johns Hopkins’ Institute for Data Intensive Engineering and Science. The National Science Foundation is providing funding in the form of a $2.1 million grant and Johns Hopkins is contributing nearly $1 million to the project.

According to Szalay:

“Computer science has drastically changed the way we do science and the science that we do, and the Data-Scope is a crucial step in this process. At this moment, the huge data sets are here, but we lack an integrated software and hardware infrastructure to analyze them. Data-Scope will bridge that gap.”

Data-Scope’s design will include a combination of hard disk drives, solid state disks, and GPU computing, enabling it to handle five petabytes of data, with a sequential I/O bandwidth close to 500 gigabytes per second, and a peak performance of 600 teraflops. The machine will be adept at data mining, able to discern relationships and patterns in data leading to discoveries that would otherwise not be possible.

There is already a backlog of data just waiting to be analyzed — three petabytes worth from about 20 interested research groups within Johns Hopkins. Szalay explains that without Data-Scope, the researchers would have to wait years in order to analyze the data already in existence, never mind the data that will keep accumulating in the meantime.

Data-Scope is expected to being operation in May 2011 and will handle a range of subject matter, including genomics, ocean circulation, turbulence, astrophysics, environmental science, and public health.

Szalay underscores the importance of the project:

“There really is nothing like this at any university right now. Such systems usually take many years to build up, but we are doing it much more quickly. It’s similar to what Google is doing — of course on a thousand-times-larger scale than we are. This instrument will be the best in the academic world, bar none.”

Appro Outfits LLNL with Visualization Cluster

This week Appro launched its Appro HyperPower Clusters, providing Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) Computing Center with a new visualization cluster called “Edge.” The cluster is based on the Appro CPU/GPU GreenBlade System and is designed to support I/O bound applications, such as advanced data analysis and visualization tasks. It will also be used for LLNL’s exascale software development computing projects.

The system’s six racks house a total of 216 CPU nodes sporting Six-Core Intel Xeon processors and 208 NVIDIA Tesla GPUs nodes, delivering 29 teraflops of computing power. The system’s 20 terabytes of memory provide the increased level of I/O bandwidth needed for data analysis and complex visualization projects. QDR InfiniBand fabric connects the compute and graphic nodes.

According to Trent D’Hooge, a cluster integration lead at LLNL, Edge is the first data analysis cluster that has GPUs with ECC support and increased double-precision floating point performance.

Becky Springmeyer, computational systems and software environment lead of the Advanced Simulation and Computing program at LLNL, explains that ”post-processing tasks are heavily I/O bound, so specialized visualization servers that optimize I/O rather than CPU speed are better suited for this work, which will be now enabled through the ‘Edge’ cluster.”

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SC Bids Farewell to Denver, Heads to Dallas for 30th

November 17, 2017

After a jam-packed four-day expo and intensive six-day technical program, SC17 has wrapped up another successful event that brought together nearly 13,000 visitors to the Colorado Convention Center in Denver for the larg Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

SC17 Keynote – HPC Powers SKA Efforts to Peer Deep into the Cosmos

November 17, 2017

This week’s SC17 keynote – Life, the Universe and Computing: The Story of the SKA Telescope – was a powerful pitch for the potential of Big Science projects that also showcased the foundational role of high performance computing in modern science. It was also visually stunning. Read more…

By John Russell

How Cities Use HPC at the Edge to Get Smarter

November 17, 2017

Cities are sensoring up, collecting vast troves of data that they’re running through predictive models and using the insights to solve problems that, in some cases, city managers didn’t even know existed. Speaking Read more…

By Doug Black

HPE Extreme Performance Solutions

Harness Scalable Petabyte Storage with HPE Apollo 4510 and HPE StoreEver

As a growing number of connected devices challenges IT departments to rapidly collect, manage, and store troves of data, organizations must adopt a new generation of IT to help them operate quickly and intelligently. Read more…

SC17 Student Cluster Competition Configurations: Fewer Nodes, Way More Accelerators

November 16, 2017

The final configurations for each of the SC17 “Donnybrook in Denver” Student Cluster Competition have been released. Fortunately, each team received their equipment shipments on time and undamaged, so the teams are r Read more…

By Dan Olds

SC Bids Farewell to Denver, Heads to Dallas for 30th

November 17, 2017

After a jam-packed four-day expo and intensive six-day technical program, SC17 has wrapped up another successful event that brought together nearly 13,000 visit Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

SC17 Keynote – HPC Powers SKA Efforts to Peer Deep into the Cosmos

November 17, 2017

This week’s SC17 keynote – Life, the Universe and Computing: The Story of the SKA Telescope – was a powerful pitch for the potential of Big Science projects that also showcased the foundational role of high performance computing in modern science. It was also visually stunning. Read more…

By John Russell

How Cities Use HPC at the Edge to Get Smarter

November 17, 2017

Cities are sensoring up, collecting vast troves of data that they’re running through predictive models and using the insights to solve problems that, in some Read more…

By Doug Black

Student Cluster LINPACK Record Shattered! More LINs Packed Than Ever before!

November 16, 2017

Nanyang Technological University, the pride of Singapore, utterly destroyed the Student Cluster Competition LINPACK record by posting a score of 51.77 TFlop/s a Read more…

By Dan Olds

Hyperion Market Update: ‘Decent’ Growth Led by HPE; AI Transparency a Risk Issue

November 15, 2017

The HPC market update from Hyperion Research (formerly IDC) at the annual SC conference is a business and social “must,” and this year’s presentation at S Read more…

By Doug Black

Nvidia Focuses Its Cloud Containers on HPC Applications

November 14, 2017

Having migrated its top-of-the-line datacenter GPU to the largest cloud vendors, Nvidia is touting its Volta architecture for a range of scientific computing ta Read more…

By George Leopold

HPE Launches ARM-based Apollo System for HPC, AI

November 14, 2017

HPE doubled down on its memory-driven computing vision while expanding its processor portfolio with the announcement yesterday of the company’s first ARM-base Read more…

By Doug Black

OpenACC Shines in Global Climate/Weather Codes

November 14, 2017

OpenACC, the directive-based parallel programming model used mostly for porting codes to GPUs for use on heterogeneous systems, came to SC17 touting impressive Read more…

By John Russell

US Coalesces Plans for First Exascale Supercomputer: Aurora in 2021

September 27, 2017

At the Advanced Scientific Computing Advisory Committee (ASCAC) meeting, in Arlington, Va., yesterday (Sept. 26), it was revealed that the "Aurora" supercompute Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

NERSC Scales Scientific Deep Learning to 15 Petaflops

August 28, 2017

A collaborative effort between Intel, NERSC and Stanford has delivered the first 15-petaflops deep learning software running on HPC platforms and is, according Read more…

By Rob Farber

Oracle Layoffs Reportedly Hit SPARC and Solaris Hard

September 7, 2017

Oracle’s latest layoffs have many wondering if this is the end of the line for the SPARC processor and Solaris OS development. As reported by multiple sources Read more…

By John Russell

AMD Showcases Growing Portfolio of EPYC and Radeon-based Systems at SC17

November 13, 2017

AMD’s charge back into HPC and the datacenter is on full display at SC17. Having launched the EPYC processor line in June along with its MI25 GPU the focus he Read more…

By John Russell

Nvidia Responds to Google TPU Benchmarking

April 10, 2017

Nvidia highlights strengths of its newest GPU silicon in response to Google's report on the performance and energy advantages of its custom tensor processor. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Google Releases Deeplearn.js to Further Democratize Machine Learning

August 17, 2017

Spreading the use of machine learning tools is one of the goals of Google’s PAIR (People + AI Research) initiative, which was introduced in early July. Last w Read more…

By John Russell

GlobalFoundries Puts Wind in AMD’s Sails with 12nm FinFET

September 24, 2017

From its annual tech conference last week (Sept. 20), where GlobalFoundries welcomed more than 600 semiconductor professionals (reaching the Santa Clara venue Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Amazon Debuts New AMD-based GPU Instances for Graphics Acceleration

September 12, 2017

Last week Amazon Web Services (AWS) streaming service, AppStream 2.0, introduced a new GPU instance called Graphics Design intended to accelerate graphics. The Read more…

By John Russell

Leading Solution Providers

EU Funds 20 Million Euro ARM+FPGA Exascale Project

September 7, 2017

At the Barcelona Supercomputer Centre on Wednesday (Sept. 6), 16 partners gathered to launch the EuroEXA project, which invests €20 million over three-and-a-half years into exascale-focused research and development. Led by the Horizon 2020 program, EuroEXA picks up the banner of a triad of partner projects — ExaNeSt, EcoScale and ExaNoDe — building on their work... Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Delays, Smoke, Records & Markets – A Candid Conversation with Cray CEO Peter Ungaro

October 5, 2017

Earlier this month, Tom Tabor, publisher of HPCwire and I had a very personal conversation with Cray CEO Peter Ungaro. Cray has been on something of a Cinderell Read more…

By Tiffany Trader & Tom Tabor

Reinders: “AVX-512 May Be a Hidden Gem” in Intel Xeon Scalable Processors

June 29, 2017

Imagine if we could use vector processing on something other than just floating point problems.  Today, GPUs and CPUs work tirelessly to accelerate algorithms Read more…

By James Reinders

Cray Moves to Acquire the Seagate ClusterStor Line

July 28, 2017

This week Cray announced that it is picking up Seagate's ClusterStor HPC storage array business for an undisclosed sum. "In short we're effectively transitioning the bulk of the ClusterStor product line to Cray," said CEO Peter Ungaro. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Intel Launches Software Tools to Ease FPGA Programming

September 5, 2017

Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) have a reputation for being difficult to program, requiring expertise in specialty languages, like Verilog or VHDL. Easin Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

HPC Chips – A Veritable Smorgasbord?

October 10, 2017

For the first time since AMD's ill-fated launch of Bulldozer the answer to the question, 'Which CPU will be in my next HPC system?' doesn't have to be 'Whichever variety of Intel Xeon E5 they are selling when we procure'. Read more…

By Dairsie Latimer

IBM Advances Web-based Quantum Programming

September 5, 2017

IBM Research is pairing its Jupyter-based Data Science Experience notebook environment with its cloud-based quantum computer, IBM Q, in hopes of encouraging a new class of entrepreneurial user to solve intractable problems that even exceed the capabilities of the best AI systems. Read more…

By Alex Woodie

How ‘Knights Mill’ Gets Its Deep Learning Flops

June 22, 2017

Intel, the subject of much speculation regarding the delayed, rewritten or potentially canceled “Aurora” contract (the Argonne Lab part of the CORAL “ Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

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