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{bio,medical} informatics

Saturday, November 15, 2003

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find related articles. powered by google. News.Com IBM gives glimpse of Blue Gene performance

"IBM on Friday talked up its Blue Gene/L supercomputer, the first module of which is a relatively small, dishwasher-size machine that can perform 1.4 trillion calculations per second.

The performance is enough to make the machine the world's 73rd fastest supercomputer, according to a ranking of the top 500 to be released Sunday. By the time IBM has upgraded the box's 512 chips, each with two processors, and linked it with another 127 identical systems in 2005, Big Blue hopes to take the top spot."

redux [09.19.03]
find related articles. powered by google. The Economist Soul of a newer machine

"WHATEVER happened to Blue Gene, IBM's ambitious attempt to build the world's fastest computer? The project, launched in 1999, called for the construction of a "massively parallel" computer with over 36,000 processing chips, each containing 32 processing cores roughly equivalent in power to a desktop PC. Harnessing all that computing horsepower--more than one petaflop, or 1,000 trillion floating-point calculations per second--would, it was hoped, allow scientists to simulate the folding of a protein, an extraordinarily demanding task which might help to streamline the discovery of new drugs. The idea was to achieve all of this within five years--something that even enthusiasts thought ambitious.

Four years on, the chips that will power the first Blue Gene computer are now being manufactured and tested. But the plans have changed somewhat."

redux [05.08.03]
find related articles. powered by google. News.Com IBM details Blue Gene supercomputer

""Blue Gene is a completely oddball, you've-never-seen-anything-like-this-before design," said Illuminata analyst Jonathan Eunice. "It is not custom everything, (but) it is still very exotic compared to anything you can buy.""

"IBM already has spent more than the original $100 million budgeted for the project and won't meet its 2004 goal for the ultimate machine, but the company has made progress bringing its ideas to fruition."

redux [02.11.03]
find related articles. powered by google. AustraianIT Blue Gene to crunch biotech's biggest numbers

"THE first version of IBM's revolutionary Blue Gene chip will roll off the production line this quarter, Ajay Royyuru, head of IBM's Computational Biology Centre, has revealed."

""We plan to build a 512-node prototype Blue Gene machine in our Watson Research Centre, in New York, where I am located, hopefully before the end of the year.

Then we will build a 64,000- node Blue Gene machine and deliver it to the Lawrence Livermore laboratory by late 2004, or early 2005."

redux [10.24.02]
find related articles. powered by google. News.Com It's Linux for IBM supercomputer project

"Linux will be the main operating system for IBM's upcoming family of "Blue Gene" supercomputers--a major endorsement for the OS and the open-source computing model it represents."

""We had two choices of operating systems for the Blue Gene family, either use a special purpose system or Linux," Bill Pulleyblank, director of Exploratory Server Systems at IBM Research, said in a statement. "We chose Linux because it's open and because we believed it could be extended to run a computer the size of Blue Gene. We saw considerable advantage in using an operating system supported by the open-source community so that we can get their input and feedback.""

redux [07.13.01]
find related articles. powered by google. Wired Magazine Gene Machine

""Ambuj Goyal, IBM Research's general manager for software, solutions, and strategy, was more ambitious than that. Why not build a machine to model molecular dynamics using general-purpose chips rather than specialized ones? That way you'd produce a prototype for a whole new family of supercomputers. Not only would it be great technology development, it would be great marketing, too. Whereas the Department of Energy has the greatest interest in top-end supercomputing - with its need to understand how nuclear weapons work - focusing on the life sciences rather than the death sciences could make supercomputing more widely appealing. What's more, a biology program would be a way of telling one of the newest markets for big iron - the post-genome biotech world - that IBM took its interests seriously. "We believe that the life sciences are going to be a rapidly growing area," says Blue Gene project manager Bill Pulleyblank, "a huge growth area for IBM.""

[ rhetoric ]

Bioinformatics will be at the core of biology in the 21st century. In fields ranging from structural biology to genomics to biomedical imaging, ready access to data and analytical tools are fundamentally changing the way investigators in the life sciences conduct research and approach problems. Complex, computationally intensive biological problems are now being addressed and promise to significantly advance our understanding of biology and medicine. No biological discipline will be unaffected by these technological breakthroughs.


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