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SCC11: Meet Team Costa Rica

Can Rainforest Eagles soar to cluster glory?

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Team vid Team Costa Rica is another first-time entrant in the 2011 Student Cluster Competition in Seattle. Their official name is Tecnológico de Costa Rica, but to me they’re the Rainforest Eagles, and they’ve earned respect for not only representing their entire region but for the hardships they overcame to make it to the SCC.

The team lost their hardware sponsor at the last minute, putting their chance to participate in the challenge in jeopardy. But the HPC Advisory Council and its chair, Gilad Shainer, stepped in to ensure that the team could not only show up but compete with the other teams on an equal footing.

The Rainforest Eagles are running the latest AMD Interlagos 16-core processors on Dell servers, utilizing a Mellanox Infiniband interconnect. As you’ll see in the video, Team Costa Rica is experiencing Infiniband for the first time and is anxious to share this discovery with their computing compatriots back home.

Even though the audio quality on the video could be better (my fault – new microphone) I hope that the enthusiasm of the team shows through. They’re a bit shy; this is all new to them. But they’re having a great time and are ready to test themselves against much more experienced competitors.

If you like pulling for the underdog, Costa Rica is your team. Take a look at the video and prepare to be convinced that maybe, just maybe, this is the year of the underdog. ®

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