Feeds

IBM to win $200m supercomputer contract

Internet oopsie-daisy ruins the surprise

Application security programs and practises

The National Science Foundation will award IBM a $200m contract to build one of the world's fastest supercomputers, but don't tell anyone because it's a secret.

Or at least it was until The New York Times spilled the beans after documents were accidentally posted on a government web site last week. Now there won't be a wild $200m Science Foundation surprise party, and the guy who makes giant novelty checks is out of yet another job. Must everyone suffer?

Perhaps not the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where the monster will be built. The spoilsport Times reports the machine is expected to cost $200m to build, but will require to be fed more than $400m over its five-year lifetime.

But we aren't talking about an overgrown Speak & Spell here. The machine will be capable of a petaflop — that's one thousand trillion mathematical operations per second — that's a lot.

The government web site removed the details about the contract after they were ever so briefly available online. The National Science Board must first approve the contract before anyone starts moving silicon.

Most scientists shouldn't get too excited about getting their grubby mitts on this one though. The machine is intended for the Pentagon's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. While many supercomputers in the US serve a wide community of academic researchers, this one will handle a few specific Grand Challenge science projects, such as simulating global warming.

The June Top 500 list of supercomputers places the IBM BlueGene beast at DOE's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory at the current top system for the fourth straight time. The system reached a benchmark score of 280.6 teraflops — which is frankly, still a lot of flops. ®

Bridging the IT gap between rising business demands and ageing tools

More from The Register

next story
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Attack of the clones: Oracle's latest Red Hat Linux lookalike arrives
Oracle's Linux boss says Larry's Linux isn't just for Oracle apps anymore
THUD! WD plonks down SIX TERABYTE 'consumer NAS' fatboy
Now that's a LOT of porn or pirated movies. Or, you know, other consumer stuff
Apple fanbois SCREAM as update BRICKS their Macbook Airs
Ragegasm spills over as firmware upgrade kills machines
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.