Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 20th Jun 2011 23:34 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems SGI hopes by 2018 to build supercomputers 500 times faster than the most powerful today, using specially designed accelerator chips made by Intel. SGI hopes to bring a massive performance boost to its supercomputers through highly parallel processors based on Intel's MIC (many integrated cores) architecture.
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Some famous computer scientist no long ago pointed out something interesting about supercomputers. We're already at the point where the majority of the energy used in parallel computing is in communication between processors, and the relative proportion of compute-related energy is declining rapidly.

Yes, the key problem with supercomputing for a long time now has been NUMA:

Unfortunately supercomputing is/has been a case of diminishing returns (what isn't I guess?)... more processors simply remain starved due to NUMA (simplest/worst solution is all processors wait, every time, for the slowest possible memory access).

It's hoped that with multicores hitting the desktops in the last years, there is going to be much more money/research into ways to mitigate this.

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