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The "Small" Knob Won't Work Forever: chips and brick wall destined to meet PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 10 October 2012 00:00

While at IBM’s Smarter Computing Summit last week at the tony Pinehurst golf resort, I had the great pleasure of hearing IBM’s Bernie Meyerson talk about limits to today’s tech, and the associated implications. Bernie is IBM’s VP of Innovation and one of the rare technologist/scientist types who can clearly and directly explain highly technical concepts in a way that they can be understood by a reasonably intelligent grey squirrel (and me too).

Even better, he’s highly entertaining and doesn’t hedge when it comes to stating what’s what in the world. Back in 2003 he predicted that Intel would never deliver on their fast CPU (4-5 Ghz) promises and would, in fact, be forced to shift to multi-core processors.

Meyerson backed up his brash prediction (it was plenty brash back then) by sharing electron microscope images of individual atoms that showed they’re kind of lumpy. The problem with lumpy atoms is that when you use only a handful of them to build gates, they leak current like a sieve. When asked about this, Intel denied, denied, denied, that there was a problem – right up to the point when they announced they were scrapping their entire product strategy in favor of a multi-core approach.

So when Meyerson talks, I pay attention. And Meyerson is talking again.

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Radio Free HPC, Episode 12: Tracking Backlash & Big Data PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 28 September 2012 00:00

In this episode, our hosts agree that "software is not magic" and consumers don't want to be tracked. Will there be a backlash? Will this be the new marketing point for competing browsers? Dan admits to being creeped out by email offers that result from Internet searches... Rich reveals that he is besieged by ads for smokers (the kind for cooking critters)... and the Profound Thought of the Day comes from Henry.

Check the Radio Free HPC website for new episodes and more great content from Rich Brueckner of insideHPC, Henry Newman of Instrumental, Inc., and GCG's Dan Olds.

 

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Radio Free HPC, Episode 11: Rich Goes to OSCON PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 28 September 2012 00:00

At OSCON, or the Open Source Convention, a presentation on the "Clothesline Paradox" aptly illustrated the way developers create value. Many large companies such as Comcast make a living on open-source software. Dan digresses into a string of complaints about his Comcast bill, but Henry and Rich reel in the discussion: was the Internet created out of generosity, or enlightened self-interest? And we hear again from one of our sponsors: Glade 'Data Center Edition' air fresheners.

Check the Radio Free HPC website for new episodes and more great content from Rich Brueckner of insideHPCHenry Newman of Instrumental, Inc., and GCG's Dan Olds.

 

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Radio Free HPC, Episode 10: Exascale Challenge Power PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 21 September 2012 00:00

Power is a major challenge standing in the way of the Exascale wave. Our hosts discuss: where are these systems going to be hosted? And how about building some infrastructure, anyway? Tune in to hear scary "power" music and figure out how this relates to Mad Max, lasers, unicorns, and Planet of the Apes.

Check the Radio Free HPC website for new episodes and more great content from Rich Brueckner of insideHPCHenry Newman of Instrumental, Inc., and GCG's Dan Olds.

 

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Radio Free HPC, Episode 9: Allan Snavely, HPC Visionary PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 21 September 2012 00:00

This episode is devoted to Allan Snavely, CTO of Lawrence Livermore National Lab, who passed away unexpectedly in July 2012.  He was widely known as a brilliant scientist and innovator, and for his work at SDSC on the Gordon supercomputer. Allan will be greatly missed by his many friends and the entire HPC community.

 

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