Thought for the month

“We may pass violets looking for roses. We may pass contentment looking for victory.” Bernard Williams, British philosopher (1929 – 2003).

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Sequoia stands tall

The bi-annual TOP500 list of the world's fastest supercomputers shows that IBM has regained top spot. The supercomputers were ranked according to The Linpack Benchmark test which gives each computer a petaflop/s score (quadrillion floating-point operations per second). Sequoia, the IBM BlueGene/Q system at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory tested at 16.32 petaflop/s compared to second place, Fujitsu's K Computer with 10.51 petaflop/s. The 96 rack Sequoia is used to carry out simulations to help extend the life of aging nuclear weapons. The first list in 1993 was headed by the CM-5/1024 designed by Thinking Machines; the 2012 IBM machine is 273,930 times faster. The IBM 'Blue Joule' at the STFC Daresbury Laboratory is the UK's top supercomputer listed as number 13 in the world.

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