With $5.2 million, Virginia Tech built the world's 3rd fastest super-computer with a cluster of 1,100 G5 Macs. They achieved 10.28 terraflops, 74%
the speed of the world's fastest super-computer... but at 2% of the cost. (1.98 terraflops per million spent, versus 0.06 terraflops per millions
Read the story here:
www.apple.com...Blacksburg, VA — Dr. Srinidhi Varadarajan knew that he wanted to build a world-class supercomputer. Also, he wanted to solidify the position of
Virginia Tech’s world-class computer science program. But with only a fraction of most supercomputing budgets to spend, it seemed like a hopeless
dream. He crunched numbers, solicited every likely vendor, examined and ultimately discarded all possible options using other platforms and chips.
Then in June of 2003, news of Apple’s Power Mac G5 hit the airwaves. At last, Varadarajan realized, he’d have as much 64-bit processing as he needed
to power his dream, without overtaxing his budget.
Soon after the announcement, Varadarajan took delivery of his very first PowerBook laptop running Mac OS X. Within days, he placed an order for the
1100 dual processor, 2.0 GHz Power Mac G5 computers that now drive Virginia Tech’s new supercomputer. Smart choice: In November of 2003 the giant
system — named System X — became the third fastest supercomputer in the world.
System X is radically different from traditional, high-performance supercomputers. Unlike most, it is based on a “supercluster” of Power Mac G5
computers, each of which has 4GB of main memory, and 160GB of serial ATA storage. Not only is System X the world’s fastest, most powerful “home-built”
supercomputer, it quite possibly has the cheapest price/performance of any supercomputer on the TOP500 list.
And your SkepticOverlord has recompressed the 40meg video into a more manageable 2.4 meg MPEG
Very interesting viewing.
[Edited on 7-1-2004 by SkepticOverlord]
Currently the Earth Simulator is the most powerful, but I'm sure in a few years when the price of 64bit processors comes down, someone will unseat it
as the fastest. I would be willing to bet the NSA already runs a Cluster of 64bit machines in the basement, hell they probably had them before they
hit the market for the public.
i'm still trying to gather some info and i don't really know crap about computers, but i do know that walmart is supposed to have one of the largest
super computers in the world in the new bunker they have just built. i will share info as it becomes available.
1- Eath Simulator, Japan 35.86 terraflops
2- Los Alamos Lab, USA 13.88 terraflops
3- Virginia Tech, USA 10.28 terraflops
4- NCSA, USA 9.81 terraflops
5- Pacific NW Lab, USA 8.63 terraflops
I know this is somewhat dated, but the video documenting the project (which is a bit like a Mac commercial, but has some interesting points) was just
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