Thursday, August 14, 2008

UofT to Make One of World's Top 20 Fastest Supercomputers

Canada's University of Toronto says that it will build the country's most powerful and energy-efficient PC together with IBM. The PC, which will be able to process up to 360 trillion calculations per second, and store 60 times more data than the Library of Congress Web archive (five petabytes, if you even knew those existed!), will also likely break to top 20 list of fastest supercomputers in the world.

The PC will be built by IBM and UofT's SciNet Consortium, which includes the University of Toronto and associated research hospitals. It will employ a hybrid design, which gives it the capability to run multiple software applications at blazing speeds.

Adding to our country's accolades is the fact that the PC will be the second-largest system ever built on a university campus, and the largest supercomputer outside of the U.S.

The UofT system is expected to be fully operational by next summer. Hey, if we can't kick butt in the Olympics, at least we have information technology research to fall back on!

It's highly unlikely that we'll see a PC like this one in someone's home any time soon: this baby will be used for major data analysis and research in areas like future risks, regional climate change, and the examination of modern scientific mysteries. But just imagine that one day, your kids, or their kids or grandkids, could be using a PC like this one to power their homes. And they'll look back fondly to those "ancient times" when something like a quad-core processor was the bee's knees of home computing technology.

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