[Beowulf] MS Cray

Joe Landman landman at scalableinformatics.com
Tue Sep 16 15:39:20 PDT 2008

Gus Correa wrote:

> Otherwise, your "newbie scientist" can put his/her earbuds and pump up 
> the volume on his Ipod,
> while he/she navigates through the Vista colorful 3D menus.

Owie .... I can just imagine the folks squawking about this at SC08 "Yes 
folks, you need a Cray supercomputer to make Vista run at acceptable 
performance ..."

The machine seems to run w2k8.  My own experience with w2k8 is that, 
frankly, it doesn't suck.  This is the first time I have seen a windows 
release that I can say that about.

The low end economics probably won't work out for this machine though, 
unless it is N times faster than some other agglomeration of Intel-like 
products.  Adding windows will add cost, not performance in any 
noticeable way.

The question that Cray (and every other vendor building non-commodity 
units) is how much better is this than a small cluster someone can 
build/buy on their own?  Better as in faster, able to leap more tall 
buildings in a single bound, ... (Superman TV show reference for those 
not in the know).  And the hard part will be justifying the additional 
cost.  If the machine isn't 2x the performance, would it be able to 
justify 2x the price?  Since it appears to be a somewhat well branded 
cluster, I am not sure that argument will be easy to make.

Joseph Landman, Ph.D
Founder and CEO
Scalable Informatics LLC,
email: landman at scalableinformatics.com
web  : http://www.scalableinformatics.com
phone: +1 734 786 8423 x121
fax  : +1 866 888 3112
cell : +1 734 612 4615

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