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NEWS: Blue Gene/L Supercomputer Doubles In Size

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posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 09:40 AM
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This article explains how the world's fastest supercomputer, Blue Gene/L just doubled its computing power. The supercomputer based at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory which already processed information at an unthinkable speed, doubled from a 32,000-processor system to 64,000-processor system. Despite its doubling its size, it actually will take up very little space. It will be roughly the size of a tennis court when complete.

The addition to the Blue Gene/L supercomputer will potentially allow it to achieve 72 trillion calculations a second. It will also use less power than some of the other newer computers that will be coming online soon.

 



story.news.yahoo.com
Blue Gene/L, already ranked as the fastest supercomputer on the planet, has been doubled in size, according to researchers at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, California.

Lawrence Livermore has been running a 32,000-processor system since December, but three weeks ago trucks began delivering the components that allowed it to add another 32,000-processors worth of power to the supercomputer, effectively doubling its processing power.

72 Trillion Calculations Per Second

Blue Gene/L is made up of approximately 32,000 two-processor nodes, giving it about 64,000 processors in total, Goldstone said.


Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


According to this acticle this computer was already fast. Then they doubled its size by 100%. First of all, I dont really understand the fuction of a supercomputer. I know it calculates gigantic amounts of information and processes it but why would you need a computer that fast? The reason I ask is because I have no idea what a supercomputer does. Then when I read that they wanted to double its size from fast to ultra fast it just made me wonder what the true motive of the machine was to be.

72 trillion calculations a second, I cant even imagine that. I just wonder what kind of problem on earth would need that much calculation power. What are they trying to figure out? Maybe when I find figure out the fucntion of a supercomputer in the first place, I will be able to appreciate the awesome power of this machine.



Related News Links:
www.pcworld.com
news.yahoo.com




posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 10:51 AM
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(from link)To put this in perspective, another supercomputer that Lawrence Livermore will be bringing online this June, the 100-teraflop ASCI Purple system, is expected to require 4.8 megawatts.

ASCI Tera-scale Scientific Data Analysis and Visualization at LLNL

The Accelerated Strategic Computing Initiative (ASCI) vision is to rapidly shift fromb] nuclear test-based Stockpile Stewardship to a high-performance computing and data analysis environment with performance, reliability and confidence which is unprecedented in numerical simulation. ASCI applications will use extremely high fidelity computer models (on the order of 1 billion cells) to generate terabytes of raw data, which will be analyzed by physicists who rely on the visualization expertise of the[three defense programs laboratories, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, and Sandia National Laboratories.

(bold text added)
Source

I don't understand how supercomputers work, but i have a few ideas about what they are used for.



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 11:56 AM
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Originally posted by sanctum
I don't understand how supercomputers work, but i have a few ideas about what they are used for.


I would like to see them put to use on the bible code theories out there. Given what they can do and how fast they can do it; one would think they could determine if the bible does in fact have predictions as some claim.



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 12:01 PM
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There used for simulations like the earth climate, so scientists can better understand what will happen in the future according to their theories, such simulations require immense computation power, your basically trying to recreate earth in a computer.... you get the idea, and also why even this new one isnt sufficiant.



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 01:15 PM
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Two main uses of supercomputers are, like mentioned, weather prediction and also simulating explosions in nuclear weapons.



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 01:33 PM
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As XeroG and Picard mentioned they aer used in war games and earth climate analysis. They are also used in areas of geological surveys, traffic analysis, drug research (computing the structures and properties of chemical compounds, biological macromolecules, polymers, and crystals), simulation of wind tunnels (aircraft and autos), cryptanalysis, and as we are all aware of - to play the game of Chess.



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 02:05 PM
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Maybe this puts the concerns of the usa government of the chinese wanting to buy into IBM bussiness into perspective, they don't want the chinese to announce a Check mate! on them...



[edit on 12-3-2005 by Silenus]



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 02:07 PM
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Originally posted by shots

Originally posted by sanctum
I don't understand how supercomputers work, but i have a few ideas about what they are used for.


I would like to see them put to use on the bible code theories out there. Given what they can do and how fast they can do it; one would think they could determine if the bible does in fact have predictions as some claim.


I agree, that would be cool. I’m sure some impressive searches could be accomplished. It a great idea because I believe there is a vast amount of relevant information to be gained from in the bible other than reading the text.

On the other hand, I wouldn’t want a government agency searching the bible code because regular people like us would never get the true facts about it. The results might be hidden from us. Who knows what they would hide. You know what I mean?



Originally posted by infinite8
As XeroG and Picard mentioned they aer used in war games and earth climate analysis. They are also used in areas of geological surveys, traffic analysis, drug research (computing the structures and properties of chemical compounds, biological macromolecules, polymers, and crystals), simulation of wind tunnels (aircraft and autos), cryptanalysis, and as we are all aware of - to play the game of Chess.


Wow a few of those I never would have guessed…traffic analysis. I guess you would need a huge computer when doing research like that. Is it like entering a million numbers in your calculator and then pressing equal or what? Sorry, I’m just curious how the information is processed. I guess I need to do a little more research into this.

72 trillion calculations a second that thing must get smoking hot. How do they keep it cool? Large fans? A/C?

LOL, “to play the game of Chess,” that movie was tight.



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 02:25 PM
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One way of working on a large, complex problem is to have a big processor take a huge bite of data to process, and do the calculations serially. Another way is to have many small processors take tiny bites (bits) of data to work on, and do them in parallel. This allows major increases in speed. Keeping everything in sync is a bit of a problem, but advances in chip manufacturing have tightened up any speed differences between similar chips.

Weather modeling, such as predicting the path of a hurricane, takes enormous processing power. So do problems such as analysis of nuclear reactions, etc.

Btw, some of these systems actually use liquid or gaseous cooling systems to keep them cool.



[edit on 12-3-2005 by jsobecky]



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 02:37 PM
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MAN! I know what i'd use it for! SUPER COMPUTER GAMES
whoooo!

Seriously, you could do some amazing calculation with such a system...



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 02:43 PM
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Originally posted by jsobecky
Btw, some of these systems actually use liquid or gaseous cooling systems to keep them cool.

[edit on 12-3-2005 by jsobecky]


Yeah, I was thinking maybe liquid nitrogen or something to cool it down.



Originally posted by GrOuNd_ZeRo
MAN! I know what i'd use it for! SUPER COMPUTER GAMES
whoooo!

Seriously, you could do some amazing calculation with such a system...


Gosh, imagine what your fps would be if you were playing a game. Wow!


[edit on 12-3-2005 by Event Horizon]



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 03:24 PM
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I have only one question about this super computer.

Can you play Hearts on it?



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 04:50 PM
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The very first Hurricane they put it on to project its path will still go whatever way it wants. I would say that you may not want your DNA to be enterd into the database because then your insurance company can charge by what it finds.



posted on Mar, 12 2005 @ 06:17 PM
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Originally posted by factfinder38
The very first Hurricane they put it on to project its path will still go whatever way it wants.

True. The benefit lies in being able to predict exactly where it will make landfall.


by Event Horizon
Yeah, I was thinking maybe liquid nitrogen or something to cool it down.


I remember working on a liquid-cooled super in the late 80's..code name was Aquarius, since it was the first time we'd tried liquid cooling. The code name quickly changed to Aridus after we ditched the original plan in favor of air cooled...too many environmental regulations, among other factors.

I hope we can play solitaire on it.



posted on Mar, 13 2005 @ 05:09 AM
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Thanks for all you comments on this issue. I took some time to look into the function of a supercomputer. I’m not sure if anyone is interested but I dug up some photos from the San Diego Supercomputer to try and illustrate how these machines compute raw data into meaningful images. I’m sure this newest computer could do far better things but these pictures are fascinating. I included a link that explains what each picture is all about.



vis.sdsc.edu...




vis.sdsc.edu...




vis.sdsc.edu...


[edit on 13-3-2005 by Event Horizon]



posted on Mar, 13 2005 @ 12:52 PM
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Super pictures, Event Horizon. Maybe I'll make an avatar out of one.



posted on Mar, 13 2005 @ 02:31 PM
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Because of the type of codes used nowadays, massive computor power is required quickly to break the codes in a workable time frame



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