HPC Quiz: How Do Your SC Credentials Stack Up?

By Andrew Jones

November 19, 2013

How do your SC skills stack up? Take this quiz and share the results with its author, Andrew Jones, aka @HPCnotes on Twitter or (maybe not) with your boss…

Q1. Your boss asks you “what is this SC thing then”? Do you:

a)       Panic and remain mute, hoping they just approve the trip.

b)      Launch into a high speed discourse about how wonderful SC is, all the technical content, everyone who is anyone will be there, and list all the great papers you are looking forward to and the tutorials and workshops … and slowly realize they stopped listening 15 minutes ago.

c)       Declare that SC is “the annual HPC event” and it would be simply unthinkable if you weren’t there. Seriously, the whole of the community is expecting you to be there. The benefits are just too obvious to explain. You have to be there. How could such an important HPC person not be at SC?

d)      Explain that the sheer scale of SC means the opportunities to promote your organization, network, pick up technical knowledge, recruit, and discover business/collaboration opportunities won’t be better anywhere else.

Q2. Your funding agency has bought into your vision far more than you bargained for – and tells you that you now have $100m to spend on HPC (hardware only) within 3 months. Do you:

a)       Panic, delete the email, change your phone number and spend SC hiding from vendors.

b)      Spend SC meeting every possible combination of vendors and partners to spend the money on the best supercomputer you can get.

c)       Rub your hands with glee at the thought of all the vendors being super-super-nice to you at SC.

d)      Politely decline the money unless it can be used against a balance of hardware, software, people, power bills, etc.

Q3. You are walking the exhibit halls of SC13, trying to kill time between meetings. Are you:

a)       Panicking, sliding along, eyes on the floor, hoping no-one will recognize you.

b)      Disgusted by the glitz and marketing that has taken over this technical industry. But ashamedly impressed by some of the booths all the same. Fall into conversation with a booth person until you realize you are late for your meeting.

c)       Strutting across the floor with vigor. Hoping someone will recognize you. Lots of people. Or just anyone really. Please. I’m important. Other people watching need to see me being important.

d)      Walking in a relaxed manner, keeping an eye out for anything interesting on the booths but happy to stop and chat to anyone who recognizes you.

Q4. You are on a panel at SC and are asked a question about a competitor’s news release. Do you:

a)       Panic. Try to avoid answering.

b)      Get really interested in what they have announced and talk about it for several minutes until you realize that you have given them way too much publicity and then try to jam in a comment about your own news.

c)       Dismiss their news with a witty put-down, pausing to make sure everyone laughs. Then take the chance to brag about how you (or your products/services) do a better job anyway.

d)      Highlight the interesting part of the competitor’s news and give them genuine credit. Then explain how it fits into the broader marketplace (without self-advertising).

Q5. The latest Top500 is announced. You had hoped your system would make it into the Top10 but it only appears at number 15. Do you:

a)       Panic. Was it your fault? What could you have done to make the HPL score better?

b)      Explain to those you meet that your system is better balanced than those placed higher and you are really happy with what you have and so are your users and anyway the Top500 is broken and so is HPL and only real applications matter anyway and we’ll have an upgrade soon and their result doesn’t really count because of …

c)       Spend several hours thinking about how to describe your system as “the most powerful supercomputer in [pick a category]”. Shamelessly repeat your newly-invented “leadership” position at every opportunity.

d)      Take the peer comparison data on board, it will be useful for the future. But be happy knowing that you have undertaken a documented process to demonstrate your system does the job it was funded to do.

Q6. It is the week after SC. Do you:

a)       Panic. What were you supposed to have remembered from SC? Who do you need to follow up with? And will anyone ever find out about that thing you did on Tuesday night?

b)      Sift through the brochures you brought back from SC. Spend days scanning the web for background on the interesting bits. Fire off a few emails to get more details. Write up a few notes on the talks you went to and anything else you recall.

c)       Count the business cards you received and count how many you gave out. Give yourself a score. Extra points for every new LinkedIn invite or Twitter follower from people you met at SC. Make sure those back at home know how hard your SC week was. No, all those nice dinners and drinking receptions were just work. And so many meetings. No, they were all important. Yes, because I am important.

d)      Methodically work through your follow-ups. Get your expense claim submitted within two days. Look up hotels and travel options for next year’s SC. Write a short report for your colleagues who could not attend SC.

How did you score?

Mostly (a): Seriously? Why are you even at SC?

Mostly (b): A real HPC techie. The core of SC’s attendance.

Mostly (c): A truly (self)important HPC person. Probably even a supercomputer center director.

Mostly (d): No one is that perfect. Clearly you lied!

Subscribe to HPCwire's Weekly Update!

Be the most informed person in the room! Stay ahead of the tech trends with industy updates delivered to you every week!

Exascale Escapes 2018 Budget Axe; Rest of Science Suffers

May 23, 2017

President Trump's proposed $4.1 trillion FY 2018 budget is good for U.S. exascale computing development, but grim for the rest of science and technology spend Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Hedge Funds (with Supercomputing help) Rank First Among Investors

May 22, 2017

In case you didn’t know, The Quants Run Wall Street Now, or so says a headline in today’s Wall Street Journal. Quant-run hedge funds now control the largest Read more…

By John Russell

IBM, D-Wave Report Quantum Computing Advances

May 18, 2017

IBM said this week it has built and tested a pair of quantum computing processors, including a prototype of a commercial version. That progress follows an an Read more…

By George Leopold

PRACEdays 2017 Wraps Up in Barcelona

May 18, 2017

Barcelona has been absolutely lovely; the weather, the food, the people. I am, sadly, finishing my last day at PRACEdays 2017 with two sessions: an in-depth loo Read more…

By Kim McMahon

HPE Extreme Performance Solutions

Exploring the Three Models of Remote Visualization

The explosion of data and advancement of digital technologies are dramatically changing the way many companies do business. With the help of high performance computing (HPC) solutions and data analytics platforms, manufacturers are developing products faster, healthcare providers are improving patient care, and energy companies are improving planning, exploration, and production. Read more…

US, Europe, Japan Deepen Research Computing Partnership

May 18, 2017

On May 17, 2017, a ceremony was held during the PRACEdays 2017 conference in Barcelona to announce the memorandum of understanding (MOU) between PRACE in Europe Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

NSF, IARPA, and SRC Push into “Semiconductor Synthetic Biology” Computing

May 18, 2017

Research into how biological systems might be fashioned into computational technology has a long history with various DNA-based computing approaches explored. N Read more…

By John Russell

DOE’s HPC4Mfg Leads to Paper Manufacturing Improvement

May 17, 2017

Papermaking ranks third behind only petroleum refining and chemical production in terms of energy consumption. Recently, simulations made possible by the U.S. D Read more…

By John Russell

PRACEdays 2017: The start of a beautiful week in Barcelona

May 17, 2017

Touching down in Barcelona on Saturday afternoon, it was warm, sunny, and oh so Spanish. I was greeted at my hotel with a glass of Cava to sip and treated to a Read more…

By Kim McMahon

Exascale Escapes 2018 Budget Axe; Rest of Science Suffers

May 23, 2017

President Trump's proposed $4.1 trillion FY 2018 budget is good for U.S. exascale computing development, but grim for the rest of science and technology spend Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Cray Offers Supercomputing as a Service, Targets Biotechs First

May 16, 2017

Leading supercomputer vendor Cray and datacenter/cloud provider the Markley Group today announced plans to jointly deliver supercomputing as a service. The init Read more…

By John Russell

HPE’s Memory-centric The Machine Coming into View, Opens ARMs to 3rd-party Developers

May 16, 2017

Announced three years ago, HPE’s The Machine is said to be the largest R&D program in the venerable company’s history, one that could be progressing tow Read more…

By Doug Black

What’s Up with Hyperion as It Transitions From IDC?

May 15, 2017

If you’re wondering what’s happening with Hyperion Research – formerly the IDC HPC group – apparently you are not alone, says Steve Conway, now senior V Read more…

By John Russell

Nvidia’s Mammoth Volta GPU Aims High for AI, HPC

May 10, 2017

At Nvidia's GPU Technology Conference (GTC17) in San Jose, Calif., this morning, CEO Jensen Huang announced the company's much-anticipated Volta architecture a Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

HPE Launches Servers, Services, and Collaboration at GTC

May 10, 2017

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) today launched a new liquid cooled GPU-driven Apollo platform based on SGI ICE architecture, a new collaboration with NVIDIA, a Read more…

By John Russell

IBM PowerAI Tools Aim to Ease Deep Learning Data Prep, Shorten Training 

May 10, 2017

A new set of GPU-powered AI software announced by IBM today brings automation to many of the tedious, time consuming and complex aspects of AI project on-rampin Read more…

By Doug Black

Bright Computing 8.0 Adds Azure, Expands Machine Learning Support

May 9, 2017

Bright Computing, long a prominent provider of cluster management tools for HPC, today released version 8.0 of Bright Cluster Manager and Bright OpenStack. The Read more…

By John Russell

Quantum Bits: D-Wave and VW; Google Quantum Lab; IBM Expands Access

March 21, 2017

For a technology that’s usually characterized as far off and in a distant galaxy, quantum computing has been steadily picking up steam. Just how close real-wo Read more…

By John Russell

Trump Budget Targets NIH, DOE, and EPA; No Mention of NSF

March 16, 2017

President Trump’s proposed U.S. fiscal 2018 budget issued today sharply cuts science spending while bolstering military spending as he promised during the cam Read more…

By John Russell

Google Pulls Back the Covers on Its First Machine Learning Chip

April 6, 2017

This week Google released a report detailing the design and performance characteristics of the Tensor Processing Unit (TPU), its custom ASIC for the inference Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

HPC Compiler Company PathScale Seeks Life Raft

March 23, 2017

HPCwire has learned that HPC compiler company PathScale has fallen on difficult times and is asking the community for help or actively seeking a buyer for its a Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Nvidia Responds to Google TPU Benchmarking

April 10, 2017

Last week, Google reported that its custom ASIC Tensor Processing Unit (TPU) was 15-30x faster for inferencing workloads than Nvidia's K80 GPU (see our coverage Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

CPU-based Visualization Positions for Exascale Supercomputing

March 16, 2017

Since our first formal product releases of OSPRay and OpenSWR libraries in 2016, CPU-based Software Defined Visualization (SDVis) has achieved wide-spread adopt Read more…

By Jim Jeffers, Principal Engineer and Engineering Leader, Intel

TSUBAME3.0 Points to Future HPE Pascal-NVLink-OPA Server

February 17, 2017

Since our initial coverage of the TSUBAME3.0 supercomputer yesterday, more details have come to light on this innovative project. Of particular interest is a ne Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Nvidia’s Mammoth Volta GPU Aims High for AI, HPC

May 10, 2017

At Nvidia's GPU Technology Conference (GTC17) in San Jose, Calif., this morning, CEO Jensen Huang announced the company's much-anticipated Volta architecture a Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Leading Solution Providers

Facebook Open Sources Caffe2; Nvidia, Intel Rush to Optimize

April 18, 2017

From its F8 developer conference in San Jose, Calif., today, Facebook announced Caffe2, a new open-source, cross-platform framework for deep learning. Caffe2 is Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Tokyo Tech’s TSUBAME3.0 Will Be First HPE-SGI Super

February 16, 2017

In a press event Friday afternoon local time in Japan, Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) announced its plans for the TSUBAME3.0 supercomputer, which w Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Is Liquid Cooling Ready to Go Mainstream?

February 13, 2017

Lost in the frenzy of SC16 was a substantial rise in the number of vendors showing server oriented liquid cooling technologies. Three decades ago liquid cooling Read more…

By Steve Campbell

MIT Mathematician Spins Up 220,000-Core Google Compute Cluster

April 21, 2017

On Thursday, Google announced that MIT math professor and computational number theorist Andrew V. Sutherland had set a record for the largest Google Compute Eng Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

IBM Wants to be “Red Hat” of Deep Learning

January 26, 2017

IBM today announced the addition of TensorFlow and Chainer deep learning frameworks to its PowerAI suite of deep learning tools, which already includes popular Read more…

By John Russell

US Supercomputing Leaders Tackle the China Question

March 15, 2017

As China continues to prove its supercomputing mettle via the Top500 list and the forward march of its ambitious plans to stand up an exascale machine by 2020, Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

HPC Technique Propels Deep Learning at Scale

February 21, 2017

Researchers from Baidu's Silicon Valley AI Lab (SVAIL) have adapted a well-known HPC communication technique to boost the speed and scale of their neural networ Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

DOE Supercomputer Achieves Record 45-Qubit Quantum Simulation

April 13, 2017

In order to simulate larger and larger quantum systems and usher in an age of "quantum supremacy," researchers are stretching the limits of today's most advance Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

  • arrow
  • Click Here for More Headlines
  • arrow
Share This