Conference Reports

Taking a starship to Oz and other SC12 observations

SC12 LogoAt long last, let the SC12 coverage begin. As a general rule here at Cluster Monkey we like to get our trade show coverage done before next years event in 2013. More in depth coverage will be presented in separate articles, but for now I would like to share some personal highlights from the show.

First, as always the Beowulf Bash was a great success. Despite not giving the exact location until the week before, many of those still hungry and thirsty after the Opening Gala headed over to the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy themed party at Clark Planetarium. (more details here). In addition, to a darn good time and a chance to touch base with HPC friends, the party is a testament to the power of community. Twenty three vendors came together to support a party that began back at SC99 with just beer and pretzels. My only regret was that I was talking so much I forgot to take pictures. Thanks again to the lead sponsors Intersect360 and Adaptive Computing

Back in November (yes, November) at SC11, I had a chance to sit down with Jim Ang, Technical Manager at Sandia National Laboratories in Appro's booth. Appro was gracious enough to allow me to interview Jim about his initial experiences with Intel's new Knights Ferry hardware and software. Similar to a GP-GPU from NVidia or AMD, Knights Ferry works in conjunction with a host server and is based on parallel x86 cores or the Intel MIC Architecture.

Just what you have been waiting for

The official video for the 2009 Beowulf Bash in Portland has hit the Internet. Check it out. Maybe you will see yourself or someone you know or someone you don't know and are glad you don't.

Of course I would be remiss if I did not mention the sponsors on last time; AMD, Econnectix, InsideHPC, Penguin, SICORP, Terascala, Xand Marketing, and of course ClusterMonkey.


When I travel to the west coast (I live on the east coast) it takes my body 3-4 days to adjust, which is always when it is time to head home. I was out last night for a late dinner, got back to the hotel about midnight and woke up wide awake at 5:30am. By this afternoon I will be dragging my feet. It may be time for my first Red Bull (maybe that should be plural).

I'm still shifting through the news and I'll have more coverage throught week, but the big "tend" seems to be GP-GPU computing. Everyone is talking about it and there are plenty of products on the show floor. Of course it could be that the whole concept of racking, stacking, and managing clusters has been discussed to the Nth degree and GP-GPUs are fresh idea worth considering.

The Beobash was a great success. Here are some pictures and comments from John Leidel over at InsideHPC. Thanks to all the sponsors and the Linux Chick for all their support. I'll be posting video next week. Speaking of video, I have been spending a bunch of time doing video un-professional interviews for Linux Magazine. They should be hitting the web next week as well.

Someone also said they saw a hard copy of "HPC Dummies" at the show. Boy it would be nice to get copy of the book I wrote (some may call it a pamphlet). I'll down a few Red Bull and go on a quest today to see if I can snag a copy. There is nothing like a caffeine crazed overly tired writer pestering you at a trade show.

One final bit of news. I have a prototype of my Limulus personal cluster workstation up and running. If you are SC09, it is in the SICORP booth (1209). You can find more information (pictures and slide deck) on the project site. You want one of these.



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