Thursday, June 24, 2021

Helping supercomputers stay super

 
(IBM’s BigGene supercomputer)
 
Supercomputers have been around since the 1960s, at first powered by esoteric processors. Today they are run by the kind of multi-core CPUs found in common servers.

According to the TOP500 list, the fastest computer in the world as of Nov. 12 was the Cray XK7, which uses 16-core AMD Opteron processors.

But despite advances in CPUs, optical networking and other tricks, high performance computers have a weakness: Their size.

Simply put, the more components in a supercomputer the greater the odds something will break.

At the recent SC12 conference researchers discussed this problem, which is only going to get worse.
 
 
 

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
Howard Solomon
Howard Solomon
Currently a freelance writer, I'm the former editor of ITWorldCanada.com and Computing Canada. An IT journalist since 1997, I've written for several of ITWC's sister publications including ITBusiness.ca and Computer Dealer News. Before that I was a staff reporter at the Calgary Herald and the Brampton (Ont.) Daily Times. I can be reached at hsolomon [@] soloreporter.com

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