Trio of Heavy Hitters Talk Shop at Supercomputing Frontiers Europe 2018

By John Russell

April 11, 2018

Organizers of Supercomputing Frontiers Europe 2018, held in Warsaw, Poland, last month, have posted brief, fascinating video interviews with three prominent keynoters – Dimitri Kusnezov, chief scientist, National Nuclear Security Administration, DoE; Thomas Sterling, professor of intelligent systems engineering and director, Center for Research in Extreme Scale Technologies, Indiana University; and Karlheinz Meier, a leader in the EU Human Brain Project and professor (chair) of experimental physics, University of Heidelberg.

The conference, now in its fourth year, was held in Singapore the first three times; it tackles all things supercomputing spanning technology, international competition, and efforts to transfer advanced technology into productive use by industry. No surprise, AI writ large, the race to exascale, and convergence of AI and traditional HPC were all part of this year’s agenda.

With apologies to those quoted, here are three teaser snippets from their video interviews intended to entice but hardly catch the full scope of their comments (their keynote topics are in parentheses):

  • Kusnezov (Precision Medicine as an Accelerator for Next Generation Supercomputing) – “We have looked for ways to partner with private sector to share best practices, share our equipment, share our capabilities and tools to help in advancing their type of competitive edge in the business sectors they are in. [We’ve found] in partnering with the private sector, it’s hit or miss.”
  • New HPC text by Thomas Sterling, Matthew Anderson, Maciej Brodowicz

    Sterling (Simultac Fonton) – “The US, according to the [NSCI] initiative, wanted to remain the leader in the field. Now in truth, by several metrics, the US is not the leader of the field although it certainly is one of the highest [users] of high performance computing in the world….If there is a race between the U.S. and China in terms of achieving exascale, in all likelihood China has already won.”

  • Meier (Neuromorphic computing: From biology to user facilities) – “There is a two-way connection between brain science and computing technology. Brain science can help develop future computing technology. We know a lot about deep learning and we think deep learning is somehow inspired by biology but currently there is very little inspiration from biology. The artificial neural networks that we use don’t have a lot to do with how the brain works.”

The interviews were wide-ranging and worth watching. Links to all three follow

1. Dimitri Kusnezov, DoE

Worried about the global exascale race? Not Kusnezov. “If it’s a race I think that’s great because it means there are many exerting significant energy to advance the field,” said Kusnezov. He spent time distinguishing the DoE’s distinct needs from most HPC users’ communities, also discussed why he thinks HPC in the cloud had yet to gain substantial traction, and talked about DoE desire to influence vendor technology roadmaps. While successful collaboration with DoE supercomputer facilities to foster HPC adoption by industry remains difficult now, Kusnezov singled out oil and gas and tire manufacturers as success stories and expects more to come.

 

2. Thomas Sterling, Indiana University and CREST

Sterling was informative and entertaining as always. “Simply a prediction on my part. I believe many will disagree [but] I believe intelligent machines that embody principle intelligence – we don’t have these yet – will ultimately go back to the early schools of symbolic computing rather than statistical, probability computing or the training-session-based computing, and will ultimately consume the vast majority of cycles in computing whether it’s small computers or supercomputers larger than can be imagined. So I believe that intelligent computing will dominate computing within our lifetime.” 

 

3. Karlheinz Meier, Human Brain Project and University of Heidelberg

Meier made clear how little we know about how the brains works and how effective neuromorphic computing that more accurately mimics brain function and organization could be game-changing. Duplicating the brain’s efficiency use of energy – 20 watts versus megawatt – has long been an attractive goal and would be a game changer in mobile devices. Fault tolerance is another critical attribute. “We lose about one brain cell per second, 100 thousand per day, and still we kind of function reasonably well. If you would kill a transistor in a processor per second, it would stop processing immediately.”

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!

New Exascale System for Earth Simulation Introduced

April 23, 2018

After four years of development, the Energy Exascale Earth System Model (E3SM) will be unveiled today and released to the broader scientific community this month. The E3SM project is supported by the Department of Energy Read more…

By Staff

RSC Reports 500Tflops, Hot Water Cooled System Deployed at JINR

April 18, 2018

RSC, developer of supercomputers and advanced HPC systems based in Russia, today reported deployment of “the world's first 100% ‘hot water’ liquid cooled supercomputer” at Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JI Read more…

By Staff

New Device Spots Quantum Particle ‘Fingerprint’

April 18, 2018

Majorana particles have been observed by university researchers employing a device consisting of layers of magnetic insulators on a superconducting material. The advance opens the door to controlling the elusive particle Read more…

By George Leopold

HPE Extreme Performance Solutions

Hybrid HPC is Speeding Time to Insight and Revolutionizing Medicine

High performance computing (HPC) is a key driver of success in many verticals today, and health and life science industries are extensively leveraging these capabilities. Read more…

Cray Rolls Out AMD-Based CS500; More to Follow?

April 18, 2018

Cray was the latest OEM to bring AMD back into the fold with introduction today of a CS500 option based on AMD’s Epyc processor line. The move follows Cray’s introduction of an ARM-based system (XC-50) last November. Read more…

By John Russell

Cray Rolls Out AMD-Based CS500; More to Follow?

April 18, 2018

Cray was the latest OEM to bring AMD back into the fold with introduction today of a CS500 option based on AMD’s Epyc processor line. The move follows Cray’ Read more…

By John Russell

IBM: Software Ecosystem for OpenPOWER is Ready for Prime Time

April 16, 2018

With key pieces of the IBM/OpenPOWER versus Intel/x86 gambit settling into place – e.g., the arrival of Power9 chips and Power9-based systems, hyperscaler sup Read more…

By John Russell

US Plans $1.8 Billion Spend on DOE Exascale Supercomputing

April 11, 2018

On Monday, the United States Department of Energy announced its intention to procure up to three exascale supercomputers at a cost of up to $1.8 billion with th Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Cloud-Readiness and Looking Beyond Application Scaling

April 11, 2018

There are two aspects to consider when determining if an application is suitable for running in the cloud. The first, which we will discuss here under the title Read more…

By Chris Downing

Transitioning from Big Data to Discovery: Data Management as a Keystone Analytics Strategy

April 9, 2018

The past 10-15 years has seen a stark rise in the density, size, and diversity of scientific data being generated in every scientific discipline in the world. Key among the sciences has been the explosion of laboratory technologies that generate large amounts of data in life-sciences and healthcare research. Large amounts of data are now being stored in very large storage name spaces, with little to no organization and a general unease about how to approach analyzing it. Read more…

By Ari Berman, BioTeam, Inc.

IBM Expands Quantum Computing Network

April 5, 2018

IBM is positioning itself as a first mover in establishing the era of commercial quantum computing. The company believes in order for quantum to work, taming qu Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

FY18 Budget & CORAL-2 – Exascale USA Continues to Move Ahead

April 2, 2018

It was not pretty. However, despite some twists and turns, the federal government’s Fiscal Year 2018 (FY18) budget is complete and ended with some very positi Read more…

By Alex R. Larzelere

Nvidia Ups Hardware Game with 16-GPU DGX-2 Server and 18-Port NVSwitch

March 27, 2018

Nvidia unveiled a raft of new products from its annual technology conference in San Jose today, and despite not offering up a new chip architecture, there were still a few surprises in store for HPC hardware aficionados. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Inventor Claims to Have Solved Floating Point Error Problem

January 17, 2018

"The decades-old floating point error problem has been solved," proclaims a press release from inventor Alan Jorgensen. The computer scientist has filed for and Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Researchers Measure Impact of ‘Meltdown’ and ‘Spectre’ Patches on HPC Workloads

January 17, 2018

Computer scientists from the Center for Computational Research, State University of New York (SUNY), University at Buffalo have examined the effect of Meltdown Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Russian Nuclear Engineers Caught Cryptomining on Lab Supercomputer

February 12, 2018

Nuclear scientists working at the All-Russian Research Institute of Experimental Physics (RFNC-VNIIEF) have been arrested for using lab supercomputing resources to mine crypto-currency, according to a report in Russia’s Interfax News Agency. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

How the Cloud Is Falling Short for HPC

March 15, 2018

The last couple of years have seen cloud computing gradually build some legitimacy within the HPC world, but still the HPC industry lies far behind enterprise I Read more…

By Chris Downing

Chip Flaws ‘Meltdown’ and ‘Spectre’ Loom Large

January 4, 2018

The HPC and wider tech community have been abuzz this week over the discovery of critical design flaws that impact virtually all contemporary microprocessors. T Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

How Meltdown and Spectre Patches Will Affect HPC Workloads

January 10, 2018

There have been claims that the fixes for the Meltdown and Spectre security vulnerabilities, named the KPTI (aka KAISER) patches, are going to affect applicatio Read more…

By Rosemary Francis

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

Fast Forward: Five HPC Predictions for 2018

December 21, 2017

What’s on your list of high (and low) lights for 2017? Volta 100’s arrival on the heels of the P100? Appearance, albeit late in the year, of IBM’s Power9? Read more…

By John Russell

Leading Solution Providers

Deep Learning at 15 PFlops Enables Training for Extreme Weather Identification at Scale

March 19, 2018

Petaflop per second deep learning training performance on the NERSC (National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center) Cori supercomputer has given climate Read more…

By Rob Farber

Lenovo Unveils Warm Water Cooled ThinkSystem SD650 in Rampup to LRZ Install

February 22, 2018

This week Lenovo took the wraps off the ThinkSystem SD650 high-density server with third-generation direct water cooling technology developed in tandem with par Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

AI Cloud Competition Heats Up: Google’s TPUs, Amazon Building AI Chip

February 12, 2018

Competition in the white hot AI (and public cloud) market pits Google against Amazon this week, with Google offering AI hardware on its cloud platform intended Read more…

By Doug Black

HPC and AI – Two Communities Same Future

January 25, 2018

According to Al Gara (Intel Fellow, Data Center Group), high performance computing and artificial intelligence will increasingly intertwine as we transition to Read more…

By Rob Farber

New Blueprint for Converging HPC, Big Data

January 18, 2018

After five annual workshops on Big Data and Extreme-Scale Computing (BDEC), a group of international HPC heavyweights including Jack Dongarra (University of Te Read more…

By John Russell

US Plans $1.8 Billion Spend on DOE Exascale Supercomputing

April 11, 2018

On Monday, the United States Department of Energy announced its intention to procure up to three exascale supercomputers at a cost of up to $1.8 billion with th Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Momentum Builds for US Exascale

January 9, 2018

2018 looks to be a great year for the U.S. exascale program. The last several months of 2017 revealed a number of important developments that help put the U.S. Read more…

By Alex R. Larzelere

Google Chases Quantum Supremacy with 72-Qubit Processor

March 7, 2018

Google pulled ahead of the pack this week in the race toward "quantum supremacy," with the introduction of a new 72-qubit quantum processor called Bristlecone. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

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