Jensen Huang’s SC19 – Fast Cars, a Strong Arm, and Aiming for the Cloud(s)

By John Russell

November 20, 2019

We’ve come to expect Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang’s annual SC keynote to contain stunning graphics and lively bravado (with plenty of examples) in support of GPU-accelerated computing. In recent years, AI has joined the show. SC19 didn’t disappoint. One of this year’s images was a gorgeous yellow Lamborghini rendered by a single GeForce RTX graphics card (1 GPU) – a task that would have required a cluster of GPUs a few years ago. (I wanted to jump in and drive away).

Let’s not forget computer graphics was there at the start and is still here in the heyday of GPUs reminded Huang, who has the rare skill to mix entertainment with key announcements and pull it off.

Not prone to understatement, Huang said, “HPC is literally everywhere today. It’s in supercomputing centers. It’s in the cloud. It’s at the edge. It is the most important and the most exciting developments that we’re seeing in computing today.” With that, he was off and running. It was part history, part future, but all Huang walking through Nvidia’s products and roadmap and greatest hits (so far).

Much of Huang’s keynote covered familiar ground and an hour and 54 minutes a lot to capture. Here’s a link to the video.

That said, amid the showmanship there was substantial news.

  • Arm reference platform. Nvidia announced roll-out of a reference design for building GPU-accelerated Arm-based servers. The lack of a clear accelerator strategy has been a major stumbling block for Arm push to penetrate HPC and enterprise datacenters. Converged HPC/AI applications, for example, rely heavily on accelerators and heterogeneous compute architecture. Nvidia’s recent support is a major endorsement.
  • Nvidia-Azure Supercomputer. Microsoft now offers a “supersized” NDv2 instance with up to 800 Nvidia V100 Tensor Core GPUs interconnected on a single Mellanox InfiniBand backend network. Nvidia likened it to being able to “rent an entire AI supercomputer on demand from their desk, and match the capabilities of large-scale, on-premises supercomputers that can take months to deploy.”
  • Magnum IO. It’s a suite of software optimized to eliminate storage and input/output bottlenecks. Nvidia says Magnum IO delivers up to 20x faster data processing for multi-server, multi-GPU computing nodes when working with massive datasets to carry out complex financial analysis, climate modeling and other HPC workloads. At the heart of Magnum IO is GPUDirect, which provides a path for data to bypass CPUs and travel on “open highways” offered by GPUs, storage and networking devices.

The Arm news was perhaps the most significant. Arm seemed everywhere at SC this year. There was a packed birds-of-feather meeting today – Can Arm Take Leadership in HPC –  with Nvidia among the many presenters. Stir in any of several recent Arm advances – one notable is the new Cray-Fujitsu collaboration to develop a commercial supercomputer based on Fujitsu A64FX Arm-based processor going into the post-K “Fugaku” supercomputer – and Arm’s high-end aspirations are suddenly looking bright.

Nvidia has collaborated widely in its recent efforts to bolster (and become part of) the Arm community.

NVIDIA’s new reference design platform enables companies to build GPU-accelerated Arm servers for running a broad range of applications.

“To build the reference platform, NVIDIA is teaming with Arm and its ecosystem partners — including Ampere, Fujitsu and Marvell — to ensure NVIDIA GPUs can work seamlessly with Arm-based processors. The reference platform also benefits from strong collaboration with Cray, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company, and HPE, two early providers of Arm-based servers,” reported Nvidia.

Additionally, “a wide range of HPC software companies have used NVIDIA CUDA-X libraries to build GPU-enabled management and monitoring tools that run on Arm-based servers,” according to Nvidia.

Back in the spring Nvidia announced it would bring CUDA to Arm. At SC19 the company made good on the promise saying it was now previewing its Arm-compatible software development kit, consisting of NVIDIA CUDA-X libraries and development tools for accelerated computing.

“There is a renaissance in high performance computing,” Huang said. “Breakthroughs in machine learning and AI are redefining scientific methods and enabling exciting opportunities for new architectures. Bringing NVIDIA GPUs to Arm opens the floodgates for innovators to create systems for growing new applications from hyperscale-cloud to exascale supercomputing and beyond.”

Arm chips, of course, are among the most-used in the world for many embedded and small devices applications. Advocates have always cited lower power as an advantage over x86. Gopal Hegde, VP/GM, Server Processor Business Unit, for Arm chip designer Marvel which collaborated with Nvidia on the Cuda work, estimates the power reduction advantage is 15-to-18 percent on comparable chips. Given the worry over power budgets for big systems that could become a significant factor processor selection decisions. Also, many of the prior ecosystem shortcomings (tools, apps, etc) have been or will soon be solved.

Several supercomputing centers are now standing up or testing systems with Arm chips and virtually all of use accelerators of one or another kind.

Microsoft Azure’s new NDv2 instance can scale up to 800 interconnected NVIDIA V100 GPUs

Oak Ridge National Laboratory science director Jack Wells provided the following assessment: “With the help of HPE, Marvell and NVIDIA, we’re excited to see how quickly our Oak Ridge National Laboratory-led effort could upgrade our Arm test-bed system, pull together performance testing, and get positive results. In just two weeks we were able to compile and correctly run approximately eight leadership-class applications, three important community libraries, and benchmark suites frequently used for evaluating the Arm-HPC ecosystem. Based on early results, the functionality of this Arm-hosted accelerated computing ecosystem appears to be already on par with the POWER and x86 environments.”

With Intel finally getting into the GPU game in earnest (officially announced at SC19), it is of course in Nvidia’s interest to expand its footprint.

The Azure news was interesting. Nvidia GPUs, of course, are in many clouds. Huang emphasized during his talk that HPC is moving quickly to the cloud and being asked to tackle ever larger job citing done as part a project to detect neutrinos (Ice Cube) in which 50K Nvidia GPUs were used. He also argues that shortened time-to-completion for jobs, not CPU or GPU instance rates, was the metric of value and would be less expensive.

 

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!

NSF Budget Approved for $8.3B in 2020, a 2.5% Increase

January 16, 2020

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has been spared a President Trump-proposed budget cut that would have rolled back its funding to 2012 levels. Congress passed legislation last month that sets the budget at $8.3 bill Read more…

By Staff report

NOAA Updates Its Massive, Supercomputer-Generated Climate Dataset

January 15, 2020

As Australia burns, understanding and mitigating the climate crisis is more urgent than ever. Now, by leveraging the computing resources at the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC), the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has updated its 20th Century Reanalysis Project (20CR) dataset... Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Atos-AMD System to Quintuple Supercomputing Power at European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts

January 15, 2020

The United Kingdom-based European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), a supercomputer-powered weather forecasting organization backed by most of the countries in Europe, has signed a four-year, $89-million Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Julia Programming’s Dramatic Rise in HPC and Elsewhere

January 14, 2020

Back in 2012 a paper by four computer scientists including Alan Edelman of MIT introduced Julia, A Fast Dynamic Language for Technical Computing. At the time, the gold standard programming languages for fast performance Read more…

By John Russell

Quantum Computing, ML Drive 2019 Patent Awards

January 14, 2020

The dizzying pace of technology innovation often fueled by the growing availability of computing horsepower is underscored by the race to develop unique designs and application that can be patented. Among the goals of ma Read more…

By George Leopold

AWS Solution Channel

Challenging the barriers to High Performance Computing in the Cloud

Cloud computing helps democratize High Performance Computing by placing powerful computational capabilities in the hands of more researchers, engineers, and organizations who may lack access to sufficient on-premises infrastructure. Read more…

IBM Accelerated Insights

Intelligent HPC – Keeping Hard Work at Bay(es)

Since the dawn of time, humans have looked for ways to make their lives easier. Over the centuries human ingenuity has given us inventions such as the wheel and simple machines – which help greatly with tasks that would otherwise be extremely laborious. Read more…

Andrew Jones Joins Microsoft Azure HPC Team

January 13, 2020

Andrew Jones announced today he is joining Microsoft as part of the Azure HPC engineering & product team in early February. Jones makes the move after nearly 12 years at the UK HPC consultancy Numerical Algorithms Gr Read more…

By Staff report

Atos-AMD System to Quintuple Supercomputing Power at European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts

January 15, 2020

The United Kingdom-based European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), a supercomputer-powered weather forecasting organization backed by most of Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Julia Programming’s Dramatic Rise in HPC and Elsewhere

January 14, 2020

Back in 2012 a paper by four computer scientists including Alan Edelman of MIT introduced Julia, A Fast Dynamic Language for Technical Computing. At the time, t Read more…

By John Russell

White House AI Regulatory Guidelines: ‘Remove Impediments to Private-sector AI Innovation’

January 9, 2020

When it comes to new technology, it’s been said government initially stays uninvolved – then gets too involved. The White House’s guidelines for federal a Read more…

By Doug Black

IBM Touts Quantum Network Growth, Improving QC Quality, and Battery Research

January 8, 2020

IBM today announced its Q (quantum) Network community had grown to 100-plus – Delta Airlines and Los Alamos National Laboratory are among most recent addition Read more…

By John Russell

HPCwire Awards Highlight Supercomputing Achievements in the Sciences

January 7, 2020

In November at SC19 in Denver, the HPCwire Readers’ and Editors’ Choice awards program celebrated its 16th year of honoring remarkable achievements in high-performance computing. With categories ranging from Best Use of HPC in Energy to Top HPC-Enabled Scientific Achievement, many of the winners contributed to groundbreaking developments in the sciences. This editorial highlights those awards. Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Blasts from the (Recent) Past and Hopes for the Future

December 23, 2019

What does 2020 look like to you? What did 2019 look like? Lots happened but the main trends were carryovers from 2018 – AI messaging again blanketed everything; the roll-out of new big machines and exascale announcements continued; processor diversity and system disaggregation kicked up a notch; hyperscalers continued flexing their muscles (think AWS and its Graviton2 processor); and the U.S. and China continued their awkward trade war. Read more…

By John Russell

ARPA-E Applies ML to Power Generation Designs

December 19, 2019

The U.S. Energy Department’s research arm is leveraging machine learning technologies to simplify the design process for energy systems ranging from photovolt Read more…

By George Leopold

Focused on ‘Silicon TAM,’ Intel Puts Gary Patton, Former GlobalFoundries CTO, in Charge of Design Enablement

December 12, 2019

Change within Intel’s upper management – and to its company mission – has continued as a published report has disclosed that chip technology heavyweight G Read more…

By Doug Black

Using AI to Solve One of the Most Prevailing Problems in CFD

October 17, 2019

How can artificial intelligence (AI) and high-performance computing (HPC) solve mesh generation, one of the most commonly referenced problems in computational engineering? A new study has set out to answer this question and create an industry-first AI-mesh application... Read more…

By James Sharpe

D-Wave’s Path to 5000 Qubits; Google’s Quantum Supremacy Claim

September 24, 2019

On the heels of IBM’s quantum news last week come two more quantum items. D-Wave Systems today announced the name of its forthcoming 5000-qubit system, Advantage (yes the name choice isn’t serendipity), at its user conference being held this week in Newport, RI. Read more…

By John Russell

SC19: IBM Changes Its HPC-AI Game Plan

November 25, 2019

It’s probably fair to say IBM is known for big bets. Summit supercomputer – a big win. Red Hat acquisition – looking like a big win. OpenPOWER and Power processors – jury’s out? At SC19, long-time IBMer Dave Turek sketched out a different kind of bet for Big Blue – a small ball strategy, if you’ll forgive the baseball analogy... Read more…

By John Russell

Cray, Fujitsu Both Bringing Fujitsu A64FX-based Supercomputers to Market in 2020

November 12, 2019

The number of top-tier HPC systems makers has shrunk due to a steady march of M&A activity, but there is increased diversity and choice of processing compon Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Crystal Ball Gazing: IBM’s Vision for the Future of Computing

October 14, 2019

Dario Gil, IBM’s relatively new director of research, painted a intriguing portrait of the future of computing along with a rough idea of how IBM thinks we’ Read more…

By John Russell

Intel Debuts New GPU – Ponte Vecchio – and Outlines Aspirations for oneAPI

November 17, 2019

Intel today revealed a few more details about its forthcoming Xe line of GPUs – the top SKU is named Ponte Vecchio and will be used in Aurora, the first plann Read more…

By John Russell

Julia Programming’s Dramatic Rise in HPC and Elsewhere

January 14, 2020

Back in 2012 a paper by four computer scientists including Alan Edelman of MIT introduced Julia, A Fast Dynamic Language for Technical Computing. At the time, t Read more…

By John Russell

Dell Ramps Up HPC Testing of AMD Rome Processors

October 21, 2019

Dell Technologies is wading deeper into the AMD-based systems market with a growing evaluation program for the latest Epyc (Rome) microprocessors from AMD. In a Read more…

By John Russell

Leading Solution Providers

SC 2019 Virtual Booth Video Tour

AMD
AMD
ASROCK RACK
ASROCK RACK
AWS
AWS
CEJN
CJEN
CRAY
CRAY
DDN
DDN
DELL EMC
DELL EMC
IBM
IBM
MELLANOX
MELLANOX
ONE STOP SYSTEMS
ONE STOP SYSTEMS
PANASAS
PANASAS
SIX NINES IT
SIX NINES IT
VERNE GLOBAL
VERNE GLOBAL
WEKAIO
WEKAIO

IBM Unveils Latest Achievements in AI Hardware

December 13, 2019

“The increased capabilities of contemporary AI models provide unprecedented recognition accuracy, but often at the expense of larger computational and energet Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

SC19: Welcome to Denver

November 17, 2019

A significant swath of the HPC community has come to Denver for SC19, which began today (Sunday) with a rich technical program. As is customary, the ribbon cutt Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Kubernetes, Containers and HPC

September 19, 2019

Software containers and Kubernetes are important tools for building, deploying, running and managing modern enterprise applications at scale and delivering enterprise software faster and more reliably to the end user — while using resources more efficiently and reducing costs. Read more…

By Daniel Gruber, Burak Yenier and Wolfgang Gentzsch, UberCloud

With the Help of HPC, Astronomers Prepare to Deflect a Real Asteroid

September 26, 2019

For years, NASA has been running simulations of asteroid impacts to understand the risks (and likelihoods) of asteroids colliding with Earth. Now, NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) are preparing for the next, crucial step in planetary defense against asteroid impacts: physically deflecting a real asteroid. Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Jensen Huang’s SC19 – Fast Cars, a Strong Arm, and Aiming for the Cloud(s)

November 20, 2019

We’ve come to expect Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang’s annual SC keynote to contain stunning graphics and lively bravado (with plenty of examples) in support of GPU Read more…

By John Russell

Top500: US Maintains Performance Lead; Arm Tops Green500

November 18, 2019

The 54th Top500, revealed today at SC19, is a familiar list: the U.S. Summit (ORNL) and Sierra (LLNL) machines, offering 148.6 and 94.6 petaflops respectively, Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

51,000 Cloud GPUs Converge to Power Neutrino Discovery at the South Pole

November 22, 2019

At the dead center of the South Pole, thousands of sensors spanning a cubic kilometer are buried thousands of meters beneath the ice. The sensors are part of Ic Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Azure Cloud First with AMD Epyc Rome Processors

November 6, 2019

At Ignite 2019 this week, Microsoft's Azure cloud team and AMD announced an expansion of their partnership that began in 2017 when Azure debuted Epyc-backed instances for storage workloads. The fourth-generation Azure D-series and E-series virtual machines previewed at the Rome launch in August are now generally available. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

  • arrow
  • Click Here for More Headlines
  • arrow
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!
Share This