Feeds

HPC might rises in the Far East

Like the space race. But with petaflops

Build a business case: developing custom apps

As spring turns into summer, we get – like clockwork – a new Top 500 list. While there’s plenty of analysis yet to be done, what’s getting lots of press is how the Chinese National Supercomputing Center has captured the number two slot on the list with their 1.27 petaflop (sustained), 4,640 GPU monster box. This system is noteworthy not only from a performance standpoint, but also because it relies so heavily on NVIDIA GPUs, further confirming a trend toward hybrid CPU/GPU computing.

Much of the attention will be focused on the big move that China Inc. has made on the list. There are two China-based systems in the top ten, and the Chinese own 24 systems in the Top 500. In total performance, this puts China behind only the US as a supercomputing powerhouse. There is speculation that by this time next year, China is going to be rolling out a new, all-China-designed supercomputer that might be the fastest in the world.

This is somewhat reminiscent of the space race, when the USSR and the US vied for dominance in the heavens. Reinforcing this thought are various conversations I’ve had with HPC gurus who increasingly see countries regarding HPC capacity as a national asset that can be used to improve economic competitiveness through improved material science research and product design. Essentially, HPC can be a national resource to help domestic industries dominate world markets. Of course, it’s also pretty good for doing economic research and weapons design too.

Is the specter of a committed communist government taking the lead in supercomputing something new to be scared of? Yeah, it might be. I (along with a lot of other people) believe that innovation springs from strong, basic research – and that strong, basic research is enabled by plentiful processing resources. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Sysadmin Day 2014: Quick, there's still time to get the beers in
He walked over the broken glass, killed the thugs... and er... reconnected the cables*
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Microsoft says 'weird things' can happen during Windows Server 2003 migrations
Fix coming for bug that makes Kerberos croak when you run two domain controllers
Cisco says network virtualisation won't pay off everywhere
Another sign of strain in the Borg/VMware relationship?
VVOL update: Are any vendors NOT leaping into bed with VMware?
It's not yet been released but everyone thinks it's the dog's danglies
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.