Supercompute Your Way to Economic Success
New York State has laid claim to an economic development tool like no other. A supercomputer housed at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute upstate. Available to ...
New York State has laid claim to an economic development tool like no other. A supercomputer housed at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute upstate. Available to businesses for free.
In return for its investment in a $100 million partnership with Rensselaer and IBM, the state is entitled 20 percent usage of the supercomputer. For three years, businesses, universities and state agencies can apply for time on the IBM Blue Gene supercomputer.
And no, you NY computer geeks reading this, that does NOT mean souped-up lunch-time games of World of Warcraft, Halo or Zap in Space.
How does a supercomputer benefit businesses? In research and development, speed is everything. If businesses can reduce the trial-and-error period part of product development by accelerating computations and simulations, products get to market more quickly. The promise of access to this computing giant helps the state at a time when the fiscal environment leaves little cash for traditional economic incentives.
New York is giving computer preference to economic development. But it also hopes that state agencies can use the computing power to solve complex problems in cyber security, transportation and other fields.
How to explain just how fast a supercomputer is to someone who doesn't understand 80 teraflops? Think of it this way. If a computer with one processor takes 24 hours to analyze or render a modeling problem, a computer with two should take 12 hours. A computer with 24 processors should do the calculation in one hour.
The supercomputer has 32,000 processors, all working simultaneously. Complex modeling problems are solved in a snap...or whatever the computer equivalent of a snap would be. Those doing the work can run their experiments, "in a way scientists five years ago couldn't have believed," says Ed Reinfurt, executive director of the New York State Foundation for Science, Technology and Innovation, or NYSTAR. "It's one of its kind in the nation," says Reinfurt.
Join the Discussion
After you comment, click Post. You can enter an anonymous Display Name or connect to a social profile.
The Week in Public Finance: Public Pensions Edition6 hours ago
Low Oil Prices Drain Some But Energize Most Local Economies9 hours ago
Missouri Auditor Dies in 'Apparent Suicide'10 hours ago
Border Surge Hampering Policing in Other Parts of Texas10 hours ago
81,000 Ohioans to Lose Medicaid Coverage10 hours ago
Scott Walker Says Union Protesters Prepared Him for Fighting Islamic Terrorists11 hours ago