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Seymour Cray and Open Computing


Bill Sembrat, HPC Wire, HPC Progress Starting from 10X, here.

I was fortunate to have worked very closely with Seymour Cray for many years in many different roles and capacities. I started working with Seymour and Seymour’s machines at Control Data Corp. I was the Account Manager at Lawrence Livermore National Lab when Sid Fernbach was the “leader” and then the Account Manager at DOE. Although I took it for granted at the time, I was in “graduate school” between the world’s leading designer and the world’s leading user. I sometimes think about that very special set of circumstances and didn’t realize how very special it was taking it all for granted and thinking that it was the way all high tech companies and users worked. Before Seymour died I also worked with him at Cray Computer Corp and then at SRC Computers. I left SRC Computers after Seymour died.

Now, reflecting on the past and looking towards the future let’s think about performance increases and how to get some significant performance increases. A reasonable starting goal is to look for performance increase of 10X with a pathway to get, at least, another 10X.

Patrick Thibodeau, ComputerWorld, Goldman Sachs, with 10,000 tech workers, embraces open computing, here.

The investment bank’s systems utilize, in total, about 500,000 compute cores. The total has increased by about 150% over the last three to four years, said Duet. In terms of data, the company now has more than 30 petabytes under management.

Duet, who appeared at the Gartner’s Data Center Conference here to answer questions about its IT organization, said Goldman Sachs believes strongly in commodity computing and tries to stay away from “the heavier appliance-type models.” The company aims “to stick to, as best we can, really, the commodity curve.”



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