This Week in HPC News

By Nicole Hemsoth

February 20, 2014

Despite the shortened week here in the U.S. with the President’s Day holiday, there was plenty of news fed by the wellspring bubbling around the new Intel Xeon E7 v2 processors. This generation is split into various optimized segments targeting everything from high performance computing (full details here) and large-scale analytics via a keen focus on memory, core count and efficiency options (and prices that fluctuate accordingly).

The robust memory and 15-cores are being touted as ideal for demanding enterprise environments with “big data” capabilities are being targeted at the enterprise while the 8-socket, 10-core HPC variant packs a price-performance punch, coming in at $3838. As Intel’s Joe Curley told us in the wake of the announcement, “You end up with 120 cores in a node, 12 terabytes of memory maximum, you can fit a lot of density and compute there and there are HPC and many other workloads that this will be ideal for.”

XeonMainImageAs expected, a number of vendors jumped out front to announce their support for the new processors, including Silicon Mechanics, Supermicro, HP (with a new variant of the ProLiant series) as well as others who will formally release their new E7-equipped servers in the coming weeks.

Here on the HPCwire front, we’ve had something of an exascale-themed week on the podcast. We spoke at length with Dr. Jack Dongarra on Wednesday about the software and application challenges ahead for exascale-class computing. We also checked in on Thursday with Dr. Bill Tang from Princeton University about the G8 funded International Exascale Program. Both of these are certainly worth a listen as several themes in both intersect.

For those interested in forward-looking HPC technologies, stay tuned as tomorrow (Friday) we’ll feature an extended podcast with Dr. Larry Smarr…touching on everything from brain-inspired and quantum computing to software and application construction for new computing models. This comes in the wake of his most recent award, the Golden Goose…interesting, indeed.

GPUs and the Xeon Phi coprocessor were at the heart of two other conversations we had during this week’s daily Soundbite episodes. We followed up on a popular article from last week about the use of GPU computing to tackle massive human settlement mapping and also talked with two scientists working on acceleration/coprocessing approaches to solving tough physics problems at CERN. More details about their considerations of GPUs and Xeon Phi coprocessors can be found in this more comprehensive overview of their challenges.

More Top News from the Week…

DoD_modernizationThe Department of Defense (DoD) High Performance Computing Modernization Program (HPCMP) has just completed its fiscal year 2013 investment in supercomputing capability supporting the DOD science, engineering, test and acquisition communities.

The total acquisition is valued at $50 million, including acquisition of multiple supercomputing systems and hardware, as well as software maintenance services. At nearly three petaFLOPS of computing capability, the acquisition constitutes a more than 50 percent increase in the DOD HPCMP’s current peak computing capability.

ScaleMPScaleMP and Boston Limited announced a partnership this week. The Boston xScaler-vSMP products deliver up to 8.5 TB RAM – the largest memory footprint for an AMD Opteron computing solution.

The xScaler-vSMP starts with 2 Terabytes (TB) of memory coupled with AMD Opteron Model 6386 SE CPUs at an affordable price, starting at $60,000. Incremental memory options of 2TB are available as additional add-ons. The companies noted this week that the xScaler-vSMP is ideal for high performance computing environments with high speed memory requirements, especially those in the life sciences and in-memory analytics camps.

And For High Frequency Trading Gurus – Lucera Financial Infrastructures announced the availability of its high-performance infrastructure to power electronic trading by financial institutions and high-frequency trading (HFT) firms. The ground-breaking Lucera platform enables customers to accelerate time-to-market, high speed connections to marketplaces and exchanges, and reduce operational and regulatory risk while eliminating the capital expense of building and operating a real-time network of customer and exchange connectivity.

“High frequency trading firms, exchanges, banks and hedge funds can reap huge savings and achieve significant improvements in performance by operating their infrastructure on Lucera,” said Jacob Loveless, CEO of Lucera. “Our customers are able to reach new levels of performance by freeing themselves from the time and capital constraints of internal legacy infrastructure.  By using Lucera, clients will be able to connect to more customers and liquidity destinations with much better performance at significantly lower cost.”

For those interested, there’s an excellent, detailed writeup on the full scope of Lucera’s HFT effort over at EnterpriseTech.

On the Horizon

Just a few items worth mentioning for those who make the event circuit.

XSEDE14 Deadlines Approaching

BigSystem 2014 Issues Call for Papers

ScilabTEC 2014 Registration Now Open

Oh, And Hey…

StatsFor those of you who are in HPC outside of the academic and research spectrum, there are a few things we’d like to ask you. Keep in mind that personal and company information is withheld for your security and privacy (as well as that of your organization) but we are curious to see where the emerging technologies we’re writing about so often land on your list of R&D and practical to-do lists.

If you could, please take a gander at our 2014 Risks and Rewards survey, particularly if you and your organization are at the bleeding edge of change. From GPU and coprocessor use and beyond, your results will help us deliver a free, open document that lets you see where your peers are placing their bets for 2014 and beyond.

Here’s a link to the survey… http://survey.gabrielconsultinggroup.com/limesurvey/index.php?sid=82547&lang=en

Thanks for considering—and for your time on this. We can’t wait to share what we’ve learned…but we need your input. 

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!

Advancing Modular Supercomputing with DEEP and DEEP-ER Architectures

February 24, 2017

Knowing that the jump to exascale will require novel architectural approaches capable of delivering dramatic efficiency and performance gains, researchers around the world are hard at work on next-generation HPC systems. Read more…

By Sean Thielen

Weekly Twitter Roundup (Feb. 23, 2017)

February 23, 2017

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

HPE Server Shows Low Latency on STAC-N1 Test

February 22, 2017

The performance of trade and match servers can be a critical differentiator for financial trading houses. Read more…

By John Russell

HPC Financial Update (Feb. 2017)

February 22, 2017

In this recurring feature, we’ll provide you with financial highlights from companies in the HPC industry. Check back in regularly for an updated list with the most pertinent fiscal information. Read more…

By Thomas Ayres

HPE Extreme Performance Solutions

O&G Companies Create Value with High Performance Remote Visualization

Today’s oil and gas (O&G) companies are striving to process datasets that have become not only tremendously large, but extremely complex. And the larger that data becomes, the harder it is to move and analyze it – particularly with a workforce that could be distributed between drilling sites, offshore rigs, and remote offices. Read more…

Rethinking HPC Platforms for ‘Second Gen’ Applications

February 22, 2017

Just what constitutes HPC and how best to support it is a keen topic currently. Read more…

By John Russell

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 network training and now they are sharing their implementation with the larger deep learning community. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

IDC: Will the Real Exascale Race Please Stand Up?

February 21, 2017

So the exascale race is on. And lots of organizations are in the pack. Government announcements from the US, China, India, Japan, and the EU indicate that they are working hard to make it happen – some sooner, some later. Read more…

By Bob Sorensen, IDC

ExxonMobil, NCSA, Cray Scale Reservoir Simulation to 700,000+ Processors

February 17, 2017

In a scaling breakthrough for oil and gas discovery, ExxonMobil geoscientists report they have harnessed the power of 717,000 processors – the equivalent of 22,000 32-processor computers – to run complex oil and gas reservoir simulation models. Read more…

By Doug Black

Advancing Modular Supercomputing with DEEP and DEEP-ER Architectures

February 24, 2017

Knowing that the jump to exascale will require novel architectural approaches capable of delivering dramatic efficiency and performance gains, researchers around the world are hard at work on next-generation HPC systems. Read more…

By Sean Thielen

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 network training and now they are sharing their implementation with the larger deep learning community. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

IDC: Will the Real Exascale Race Please Stand Up?

February 21, 2017

So the exascale race is on. And lots of organizations are in the pack. Government announcements from the US, China, India, Japan, and the EU indicate that they are working hard to make it happen – some sooner, some later. Read more…

By Bob Sorensen, IDC

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 new board design for NVLink-equipped Pascal P100 GPUs that will create another entrant to the space currently occupied by Nvidia's DGX-1 system, IBM's "Minsky" platform and the Supermicro SuperServer (1028GQ-TXR). 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 will be Japan’s “fastest AI supercomputer,” Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Drug Developers Use Google Cloud HPC in the Fight Against ALS

February 16, 2017

Within the haystack of a lethal disease such as ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis / Lou Gehrig’s Disease) there exists, somewhere, the needle that will pierce this therapy-resistant affliction. Read more…

By Doug Black

Azure Edges AWS in Linpack Benchmark Study

February 15, 2017

The “when will clouds be ready for HPC” question has ebbed and flowed for years. Read more…

By John Russell

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 was pretty much the exclusive realm of the Cray-2 and IBM mainframe class products. That’s changing. We are now seeing an emergence of x86 class server products with exotic plumbing technology ranging from Direct-to-Chip to servers and storage completely immersed in a dielectric fluid. Read more…

By Steve Campbell

For IBM/OpenPOWER: Success in 2017 = (Volume) Sales

January 11, 2017

To a large degree IBM and the OpenPOWER Foundation have done what they said they would – assembling a substantial and growing ecosystem and bringing Power-based products to market, all in about three years. Read more…

By John Russell

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

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

D-Wave SC16 Update: What’s Bo Ewald Saying These Days

November 18, 2016

Tucked in a back section of the SC16 exhibit hall, quantum computing pioneer D-Wave has been talking up its new 2000-qubit processor announced in September. Forget for a moment the criticism sometimes aimed at D-Wave. This small Canadian company has sold several machines including, for example, ones to Lockheed and NASA, and has worked with Google on mapping machine learning problems to quantum computing. In July Los Alamos National Laboratory took possession of a 1000-quibit D-Wave 2X system that LANL ordered a year ago around the time of SC15. Read more…

By John Russell

Enlisting Deep Learning in the War on Cancer

December 7, 2016

Sometime in Q2 2017 the first ‘results’ of the Joint Design of Advanced Computing Solutions for Cancer (JDACS4C) will become publicly available according to Rick Stevens. He leads one of three JDACS4C pilot projects pressing deep learning (DL) into service in the War on Cancer. Read more…

By John Russell

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 offerings such as Caffe, Theano, and Torch. Read more…

By John Russell

HPC Startup Advances Auto-Parallelization’s Promise

January 23, 2017

The shift from single core to multicore hardware has made finding parallelism in codes more important than ever, but that hasn’t made the task of parallel programming any easier. 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 will be Japan’s “fastest AI supercomputer,” Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Leading Solution Providers

CPU Benchmarking: Haswell Versus POWER8

June 2, 2015

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…

By Tiffany Trader

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

BioTeam’s Berman Charts 2017 HPC Trends in Life Sciences

January 4, 2017

Twenty years ago high performance computing was nearly absent from life sciences. Today it’s used throughout life sciences and biomedical research. Genomics and the data deluge from modern lab instruments are the main drivers, but so is the longer-term desire to perform predictive simulation in support of Precision Medicine (PM). There’s even a specialized life sciences supercomputer, ‘Anton’ from D.E. Shaw Research, and the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center is standing up its second Anton 2 and actively soliciting project proposals. There’s a lot going on. Read more…

By John Russell

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 new board design for NVLink-equipped Pascal P100 GPUs that will create another entrant to the space currently occupied by Nvidia's DGX-1 system, IBM's "Minsky" platform and the Supermicro SuperServer (1028GQ-TXR). Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

IDG to Be Bought by Chinese Investors; IDC to Spin Out HPC Group

January 19, 2017

US-based publishing and investment firm International Data Group, Inc. (IDG) will be acquired by a pair of Chinese investors, China Oceanwide Holdings Group Co., Ltd. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Dell Knights Landing Machine Sets New STAC Records

November 2, 2016

The Securities Technology Analysis Center, commonly known as STAC, has released a new report characterizing the performance of the Knight Landing-based Dell PowerEdge C6320p server on the STAC-A2 benchmarking suite, widely used by the financial services industry to test and evaluate computing platforms. The Dell machine has set new records for both the baseline Greeks benchmark and the large Greeks benchmark. 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 was pretty much the exclusive realm of the Cray-2 and IBM mainframe class products. That’s changing. We are now seeing an emergence of x86 class server products with exotic plumbing technology ranging from Direct-to-Chip to servers and storage completely immersed in a dielectric fluid. Read more…

By Steve Campbell

What Knights Landing Is Not

June 18, 2016

As we get ready to launch the newest member of the Intel Xeon Phi family, code named Knights Landing, it is natural that there be some questions and potentially some confusion. Read more…

By James Reinders, Intel

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