Viewing posts by Nages Sieslack
By Tom Tabor
Jack Dongarra of the University of Tennessee will receive the ACM-IEEE Computer Society Ken Kennedy Award for his leadership in designing and promoting standards for mathematical software used to solve numerical problems common to high performance computing (HPC). His work has led to the development of major software libraries of algorithms and methods that boost performance and portability in HPC environments, which rely on supercomputers and parallel processing techniques for solving complex computational problems. Dongarra, the Distinguished University Professor at the University of Tennessee, is the founder and director of the Innovative Computing Laboratory at the University, and holds positions at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of Manchester. He will receive the Kennedy Award on November 19, 2013, in Denver at SC13, the International Conference on High Performance Computing.
The TOP500 list of the world's fastest supercomputers first debuted more than two decades ago, in June 1993, the brainchild of Berkeley Lab scientist Erich Strohmaier and Professor Hans Meuer. The much-celebrated list is compiled using the Linpack benchmark, which was developed by Jack Dongarra. Although the continued relevance of the Linpack benchmark as a sole measure of big iron performance has been called into question, the impact of this twice-yearly list as a widely recognized metric and a valuable historical record cannot be denied.
In this age of big data, would it surprise you to learn that supercomputers are on track to predicting wars, revolutions and other societal disruptions? Data scientist Kalev Leetaru is one of the foremost proponents in the emerging field of predictive supercomputing. His research helped usher in the era of "petascale humanities," where computers can identify useful or interesting patterns if provided with sufficiently large data repositories.
You've undoubtedly heard over and over again about what an absurdly complex entity the human brain is. But a new breakthrough by Japanese and German scientists might finally drive the point home. Taking advantage of the almost 83,000 processors of one of the world's most powerful supercomputers, the team was able to mimic just one percent of one second's worth of human brain activity—and even that took 40 minutes.