Around the HPC World in 81 Slides with IDC

By John Russell

June 21, 2016

IDC presented its annual HPC Update at ISC yesterday. As usual it was a whirlwind tour encompassing HPC market data, technology trends, new IDC initiatives, announcement of the ISC16 Innovation Award recipients, and an update on IDC’s DOE-funded study to demonstrate HPC’s ROI. Small wonder it required an 81-slide deck with Earl Joseph and Bob Sorensen of IDC ably sharing the presenter duties.

Before plunging into the details here are a few key summary bullets:

  • 2015 was an excellent year (11 percent revenue growth) but 2016 is likely to be only “OK’. That said, HPC remains a growth market with the migration of HPC to the cloud and growing recognition of HPC’s strategic value as key market drivers. The forecast for 2015-2020 server growth, however, is a modest 5.9 percent.
  • Vendor positions “shifted greatly” and will keep shuffling according IDC. This year’s winner in supercomputers is Hewlett Packard Enterprise among named vendors while the unglamorous ‘Other’ category, a bit of a catchall bucket, is growing in size and impact reported IDC. Joseph said IDC is thinking about identifying some of the companies lumped together in the category.
  • The formative HPDA continues its growth and will expand vendor opportunities, said Joseph. So will machine learning, cognitive computing, and IoT. Encouragingly HPC ROI numbers are even higher than first indicated in IDC’s pilot study – the latest data suggest $1 invested produces $673 in revenue and $44 in profits (or savings) though Joseph added a caution. On the downside, software remains the number one roadblock for users, cluster management is still not trivial, and
  • Here comes China. Rumors had swirled for some time but the sudden reality of China’s new supercomputer (the Sunway TaihuLight system, 40,960 nodes and 10,649,600 cores and 1.31 PB of memory) appearing atop the latest Top500 list will cause consternation in many quarters. The new computing colossus is also complicating IDC’s efforts to size the supercomputer market because IDC isn’t sure how to count it, says Joseph. No matter how it ends up being counted, it changes the landscape.

IDC.ISC.HPC SERVER MKTHere’s a quick look at IDC’s top line HPC revenue numbers. 2015 server market sales are shown on the first slide followed by IDC’s five-year forecast below. The trend moving forward is positive but hardly bullish.

In terms of the overall HPC market, storage is still the fastest growing segment. IDC estimate 2015 revenue at $4.7B growing to $6.7B in 2019 – that’s 9.4 percent CAGR and indicative of the growth of big data and HPDA requirements. Servers and services are forecast to grow 7.7percent over the same time period. Virtually no growth is forecast for any server segment for the 2019-2020 period pulling down its five-year growth average to 5.9 percent as noted earlier.

Joseph noted the supercomputer segment in particular poses several challenges in characterizing. Sales cycles are variable and one or two big contracts can change revenue totals. The supercomputer market sales curve still has that roller coaster shape. “If you look at just the top three or four supercomputers sold each year, that’s what is causing all the variation here,” he said.

Taking about Sunway, he said “There are a number of definitions as to how it fits our data structure and we have to determine was it actually sold to somebody or was it self-built. At the moment it looks like it might have been self built. If it is self built it doesn’t go into our data structure because we don’t track things that are not built by [one party] and then sold to someone else.” He says it will be a month before they sort how to account for Sunway – if it is not included the segment will show no growth in 2016.

IDC.ISC.WW HPC SERVER FORECAST

HPE/HP (2015 sales) led the pack of ten named supercomputer suppliers with $1.2B. Cray was nearest ($583M), followed by Lenovo ($391M), NEC ($138M), Fujitsu ($106M), SGI ($88M), Dell ($54M), Bull Atos ($41M) and Sugon ($13M). The ‘Other’ category was actually third with $422M.

You can see quickly see how big the ‘other’ category has become, says Sorensen adding, “It’s a collection of vendors that are either too small to be included individually or who don’t want their actual numbers broken out in any great detail. What we are finding is this other category is growing rather aggressively.”

Having followed the HPDA market for time now, IDC continues to refine how it tracks the space. Joseph said IDC recently begun characterizing HPDA in four categories:

  • Fraud and anomaly detection. This “horizontal” workload segment centers around identifying harmful or potentially harmful patterns and causes using graph analysis, semantic analysis, or other high performance analytics techniques. The patterns may point to fraud, which is the deceptive exploitation or annotation of data for wrongful or illegal personal gain, or they may point to cyber security crime or insider threats, significant errors, or other anomalies that may deserve further investigation.
  • Marketing. This segment covers the use of HPDA to promote products or services, typically using complex algorithms to discern potential customers’ demographics, buying preferences and habits.
  • Business intelligence. The workload segment uses HPDA to identify opportunities to advance the market position and competitiveness of businesses, by better understanding themselves, their competitors, and the evolving dynamics of the markets they participate in.
  • Other Commercial HPDA. This catchall segment includes all commercial HPDA workloads other than the three just described. Over time, IDC expects some of these workloads to become significant enough to split out of this “other” category and command their own segments. An example of such a high-potential workload is the use of HPDA to manage large IT infrastructures, ranging from on premise data centers to public clouds and Internet-of-Things (IoT) infrastructures.

Joseph said IDC plans to add segments but how many and when isn’t set.

There were few surprises on IDC hit list of important technologies. Despite Intel’s current dominance in the processor world, a point hammered home at ISC this week with release of Xeon Phi/KNL to general availability, the camp of alternatives continues to grow rather than shrink. The interconnect battle between Intel Omni-Path and Mellanox InfiniBand is also now in full swing said Sorensen. Shown here are some of the technologies IDC.ISC.TOP TECH TRENDSIDC is watching closely

Software challenges are perhaps even more vexing, said Sorensen noting wryly the rush to use the word open – as in OpenHPC, OpenCL, Open ACC, Open Stack, Open Power, an Open Compute (his list).

IDC touched on two new DOE-funded initiatives it’s undertaking. One is a program to track exascale activity around the world. Sorensen explained, “[The idea] is to track, on a quarterly basis, where are the projects, who are the principal investigators, what’s the level of funding, what are the research goals.”

As part of the grant, IDC is supposed to share its results with the HPC community. “Part of the reason this is being made available to the whole community is to help government users and vendor figure out where is the best place to make an R&D investment. The tracking will show holes, where things are missing,” he said.

The mechanism hasn’t yet been sorted out but IDC plans to create a data structure and repository that’s updated every quarter and is made available. “We’d very much like to do it by Supercomputing (November) but I have to say I think we’re going to miss that by about a month.”

The other effort is around cyber security. IDC has already done one study examining problems and practices in how organizations handle cyber security. As described by Sorensen, the results of the early work are not especially comforting. For example, the study reveled that detecting a breach can take a couple of years from the time of its occurrence. “Worse,” said Sorensen, “when something like that happens, rather than fix the problem, organization often simply opt by more insurance.”

IDC.ISC.SECURITYThe first study was done in the summer of 2015. This next phase will drill down further in an effort to identify effective technologies and best practices. Cyber security isn’t necessarily an HPC issue, agrees Sorensen, but it usually is a HPDA issue and often other HPC elements can be deployed. A few conclusions from the first study are shown here.

The 2016 study is designed “to obtain relevant, useful information from large US organizations concerning their cyber security challenges and how they’re addressing those challenges from strategic, proactive, reactive, and crisis management perspectives.” A critical element in the study, says IDC, is exploring the role that HPDA/Big Data analytics can play in advanced cyber security.

Besides discussing the new DOE sponsored programs, IDC also provided an update on its various efforts to establish ROI metrics for HPC. This project has been going on for some time. The early pilot program produced very promising results (HPC ROI: Invest a Dollar to Make $500-plus Reports IDC). IDC has since moved been working on building up the number of samples in the study to refine the results and increase confidence in them.

IDC.ISC.ROIThe new results shown were rather dramatically higher that the pilot, making some in the audience wondered how that could be. Joseph agreed.

“The initial work was to create the model. Now we are at the large scale data collection [stage],” said Joseph. “Our feeling right now is we are going to need about 2000 samples” to have solid confidence in the results. Even so, said Joseph, DOE was now encouraging IDC “to getting the data out to the community more frequently and to create much more information about HPC’s job creation potential.”

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!

NIST/Xanadu Researchers Report Photonic Quantum Computing Advance

March 3, 2021

Researchers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and Xanadu, a young Canada-based quantum computing company, have reported developing a full-stack, photonic quantum computer able to carry out th Read more…

By John Russell

Can Deep Learning Replace Numerical Weather Prediction?

March 3, 2021

Numerical weather prediction (NWP) is a mainstay of supercomputing. Some of the first applications of the first supercomputers dealt with climate modeling, and even to this day, the largest climate models are heavily con Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Deloitte Outfits New AI Computing Center with Nvidia DGX Gear

March 3, 2021

With AI use continuing to grow in adoption throughout enterprise IT, Deloitte is creating a new Deloitte Center for AI Computing to advise its customers, explain the technology and help them use it in their ongoing busin Read more…

By Todd R. Weiss

HPE Names Justin Hotard New HPC Chief as Pete Ungaro Departs

March 2, 2021

HPE CEO Antonio Neri announced today (March 2, 2020) the appointment of Justin Hotard as general manager of HPC, mission critical solutions and labs, effective immediately. Hotard replaces long-time Cray exec Pete Ungaro Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

ORNL’s Jeffrey Vetter on How IRIS Runtime will Help Deal with Extreme Heterogeneity

March 2, 2021

Jeffery Vetter is a familiar figure in HPC. Last year he became one of the new section heads in a reorganization at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. He had been founding director of ORNL's Future Technologies Group which i Read more…

By John Russell

AWS Solution Channel

Moderna Accelerates COVID-19 Vaccine Development on AWS

Marcello Damiani, Chief Digital and Operational Excellence Officer at Moderna, joins Todd Weatherby, Vice President of AWS Professional Services Worldwide, for a discussion on developing Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine, scaling systems to enable global distribution, and leveraging cloud technologies to accelerate processes. Read more…

HPC Career Notes: March 2021 Edition

March 1, 2021

In this monthly feature, we’ll keep you up-to-date on the latest career developments for individuals in the high-performance computing community. Whether it’s a promotion, new company hire, or even an accolade, we’ Read more…

By Mariana Iriarte

Can Deep Learning Replace Numerical Weather Prediction?

March 3, 2021

Numerical weather prediction (NWP) is a mainstay of supercomputing. Some of the first applications of the first supercomputers dealt with climate modeling, and Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

HPE Names Justin Hotard New HPC Chief as Pete Ungaro Departs

March 2, 2021

HPE CEO Antonio Neri announced today (March 2, 2020) the appointment of Justin Hotard as general manager of HPC, mission critical solutions and labs, effective Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

ORNL’s Jeffrey Vetter on How IRIS Runtime will Help Deal with Extreme Heterogeneity

March 2, 2021

Jeffery Vetter is a familiar figure in HPC. Last year he became one of the new section heads in a reorganization at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. He had been f Read more…

By John Russell

HPC Career Notes: March 2021 Edition

March 1, 2021

In this monthly feature, we’ll keep you up-to-date on the latest career developments for individuals in the high-performance computing community. Whether it Read more…

By Mariana Iriarte

African Supercomputing Center Inaugurates ‘Toubkal,’ Most Powerful Supercomputer on the Continent

February 25, 2021

Historically, Africa hasn’t exactly been synonymous with supercomputing. There are only a handful of supercomputers on the continent, with few ranking on the Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Japan to Debut Integrated Fujitsu HPC/AI Supercomputer This Spring

February 25, 2021

The integrated Fujitsu HPC/AI Supercomputer, Wisteria, is coming to Japan this spring. The University of Tokyo is preparing to deploy a heterogeneous computing Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Xilinx Launches Alveo SN1000 SmartNIC

February 24, 2021

FPGA vendor Xilinx has debuted its latest SmartNIC model, the Alveo SN1000, with integrated “composability” features that allow enterprise users to add their own custom networking functions to supplement its built-in networking. By providing deep flexibility... Read more…

By Todd R. Weiss

ASF Keynotes Showcase How HPC and Big Data Have Pervaded the Pandemic

February 24, 2021

Last Thursday, a range of experts joined the Advanced Scale Forum (ASF) in a rapid-fire roundtable to discuss how advanced technologies have transformed the way humanity responded to the COVID-19 pandemic in indelible ways. The roundtable, held near the one-year mark of the first... Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Julia Update: Adoption Keeps Climbing; Is It a Python Challenger?

January 13, 2021

The rapid adoption of Julia, the open source, high level programing language with roots at MIT, shows no sign of slowing according to data from Julialang.org. I Read more…

By John Russell

Esperanto Unveils ML Chip with Nearly 1,100 RISC-V Cores

December 8, 2020

At the RISC-V Summit today, Art Swift, CEO of Esperanto Technologies, announced a new, RISC-V based chip aimed at machine learning and containing nearly 1,100 low-power cores based on the open-source RISC-V architecture. Esperanto Technologies, headquartered in... Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Azure Scaled to Record 86,400 Cores for Molecular Dynamics

November 20, 2020

A new record for HPC scaling on the public cloud has been achieved on Microsoft Azure. Led by Dr. Jer-Ming Chia, the cloud provider partnered with the Beckman I Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Programming the Soon-to-Be World’s Fastest Supercomputer, Frontier

January 5, 2021

What’s it like designing an app for the world’s fastest supercomputer, set to come online in the United States in 2021? The University of Delaware’s Sunita Chandrasekaran is leading an elite international team in just that task. Chandrasekaran, assistant professor of computer and information sciences, recently was named... Read more…

By Tracey Bryant

NICS Unleashes ‘Kraken’ Supercomputer

April 4, 2008

A Cray XT4 supercomputer, dubbed Kraken, is scheduled to come online in mid-summer at the National Institute for Computational Sciences (NICS). The soon-to-be petascale system, and the resulting NICS organization, are the result of an NSF Track II award of $65 million to the University of Tennessee and its partners to provide next-generation supercomputing for the nation's science community. Read more…

10nm, 7nm, 5nm…. Should the Chip Nanometer Metric Be Replaced?

June 1, 2020

The biggest cool factor in server chips is the nanometer. AMD beating Intel to a CPU built on a 7nm process node* – with 5nm and 3nm on the way – has been i Read more…

By Doug Black

Top500: Fugaku Keeps Crown, Nvidia’s Selene Climbs to #5

November 16, 2020

With the publication of the 56th Top500 list today from SC20's virtual proceedings, Japan's Fugaku supercomputer – now fully deployed – notches another win, Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Gordon Bell Special Prize Goes to Massive SARS-CoV-2 Simulations

November 19, 2020

2020 has proven a harrowing year – but it has produced remarkable heroes. To that end, this year, the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) introduced the Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Leading Solution Providers

Contributors

Texas A&M Announces Flagship ‘Grace’ Supercomputer

November 9, 2020

Texas A&M University has announced its next flagship system: Grace. The new supercomputer, named for legendary programming pioneer Grace Hopper, is replacing the Ada system (itself named for mathematician Ada Lovelace) as the primary workhorse for Texas A&M’s High Performance Research Computing (HPRC). Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Saudi Aramco Unveils Dammam 7, Its New Top Ten Supercomputer

January 21, 2021

By revenue, oil and gas giant Saudi Aramco is one of the largest companies in the world, and it has historically employed commensurate amounts of supercomputing Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Intel Xe-HP GPU Deployed for Aurora Exascale Development

November 17, 2020

At SC20, Intel announced that it is making its Xe-HP high performance discrete GPUs available to early access developers. Notably, the new chips have been deplo Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Intel Teases Ice Lake-SP, Shows Competitive Benchmarking

November 17, 2020

At SC20 this week, Intel teased its forthcoming third-generation Xeon "Ice Lake-SP" server processor, claiming competitive benchmarking results against AMD's second-generation Epyc "Rome" processor. Ice Lake-SP, Intel's first server processor with 10nm technology... Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

New Deep Learning Algorithm Solves Rubik’s Cube

July 25, 2018

Solving (and attempting to solve) Rubik’s Cube has delighted millions of puzzle lovers since 1974 when the cube was invented by Hungarian sculptor and archite Read more…

By John Russell

Livermore’s El Capitan Supercomputer to Debut HPE ‘Rabbit’ Near Node Local Storage

February 18, 2021

A near node local storage innovation called Rabbit factored heavily into Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s decision to select Cray’s proposal for its CORAL-2 machine, the lab’s first exascale-class supercomputer, El Capitan. Details of this new storage technology were revealed... Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

African Supercomputing Center Inaugurates ‘Toubkal,’ Most Powerful Supercomputer on the Continent

February 25, 2021

Historically, Africa hasn’t exactly been synonymous with supercomputing. There are only a handful of supercomputers on the continent, with few ranking on the Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

It’s Fugaku vs. COVID-19: How the World’s Top Supercomputer Is Shaping Our New Normal

November 9, 2020

Fugaku is currently the most powerful publicly ranked supercomputer in the world – but we weren’t supposed to have it yet. The supercomputer, situated at Japan’s Riken scientific research institute, was scheduled to come online in 2021. When the pandemic struck... Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

  • arrow
  • Click Here for More Headlines
  • arrow
HPCwire