ISC HPC Blog

Are you an ISC veteran?

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ISC’12 in Hamburg is only a few weeks away now. The flood of ISC’12 targeted press releases and marketing emails has started. Talk of the TOP500 – and especially possible new entries in the Top 10 – will become more common. Bloggers with nothing better to write about will preview ISC’12 instead (yes, me too! – my ISC’12 preview blog post is here).

 

The hype of the summer’s biggest HPC event is growing. But it is not just hype – ISC has a value to HPC users, buyers and suppliers that is only too real.

 

This ISC’12 blog has hosted several discussions on the key challenges (and thus also opportunities) facing the supercomputing community. That is only a prelude to plenty of conversations – from strategic arguments to technical depths – on the solution technologies, national policies, technical challenges, and everyday realities of supercomputing that will be the usual hallmark of ISC. And, as well as a serious technical and business conference, ISC has a well-earned reputation as one of the best HPC social and networking events of the year.

 

So to help attendees best navigate the opportunities of ISC, here is this year’s glossary of key topics:

 

Customer message collateral

Publicity leaflets

ISC veteran

Someone who still refers to ISC as “the Heidelberg event”, even though ISC has changed locations twice since then.

True ISC veteran

Someone who still refers to ISC as “the Mannheim event”!

Top500

Essential topic of all casual conversations in Hamburg – rude not to mention it.

Top 10

The only part of the Top500 that matters (only if your centre/product appears in the Top 10).

Top 50000

The real HPC market (if your centre/product does not appear in the Top 10).

HPL/Linpack

Admittedly only one number but is a useful benchmark (if you are listed in the Top 10).

HPL/Linpack

The wrong measure of performance, need to change it (if you are not listed in the Top 10).

Exascale

Probably the most talked about topic at ISC – and the one that actually affects most attendees the least over the next 2-3 years …

Big Data

This year’s replacement for Cloud as the marketing buzzword.

Software

Essential to any productive use of HPC or to secure a proper return on investment, but never seems to get the attention.

Hardware

The only part of supercomputing that matters (it seems).

Processors

The only part of the hardware that matters (it seems).

GPUs

The inevitable processor solution for cost-effective supercomputing now and onwards to exascale – must be mentioned in every talk.

MIC

The inevitable processor solution for cost-effective supercomputing now and onwards to exascale – must be mentioned in every talk.

New algorithms

Magic that will solve all our problems with programming an exascale computer of GPUs for Big Data not just HPL.

New languages & paradigms

Alternative magic that will solve all our problems with programming an exascale computer of GPUs for Big Data not just HPL.

Big new industrial users

of HPC

Near mythical beasts, desperately sought after for their imagined pots of money to spend on the latest promising HPC technologies and urgent need for lots of petaFLOPS.

Real industrial users

of HPC

Focused on practical, quality, cost-viable solutions, and have been for years. Recognise the essential contributions of software development and people investment to achieving real business impact from HPC.

Thomas Sterling

Merchant of doom – “zettaFLOPS will never happen”

Thomas Sterling

Visionary – “need new model of execution”

NAG

A secret society with carefully protected answers to all of the above.

NAG

Friendly, flexible & trusted HPC software development services and HPC consulting.

 

Author's biography:

Andrew is Vice-President HPC Services and Consulting at the Numerical Algorithms Group (NAG). NAG provides HPC application performance services and impartial technology consulting to customers around the world. NAG is also a core part of the UK’s HECToR national supercomputing service, providing the Computational Science and Engineering (CSE) Support Service, including training. 

 

tl_files/isc/images/bloggers/AndrewJonesphoto.jpg
Andrew Jones
 

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