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02-20-12, 07:40 AM
http://5601-blogs-nvidia-com.voxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/Sumit_Gupta.jpg (http://blogs.nvidia.com/author/sumit-gupta/)Nvidia‚??s Sumit Gupta writes (http://blogs.nvidia.com/2012/02/a-japanese-tale-of-two-supercomputers/) that the recent flap (http://insidehpc.com/2012/02/13/was-the-k-super-worth-the-price-tag-for-japan/) over the $Billion-dollar cost of the Japanese K Supercomputer (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/K_computer) brings to light that supercomputers do not have to cost nearly this much to develop and operate.

The 112 billion Yen price tag for the K computer was just the start. Add to this about 10 billion Yen ($128 million U.S.) each year to power and maintain the mammoth system, and it‚??s clear that the costs will really start to add up. The K system costs so much to build because the SPARC CPU at the heart of the machine is an expensive, custom-designed processor. HPC history has repeatedly shown that the development cost of custom processors is just not economically viable in the high-performance computing market.

Gupta contrasts the K supercomputer with Tsubame 2.0 (http://www.gsic.titech.ac.jp/en/tsubame2), a GPU-powered machine at the Tokyo Institute of Technology. He calls it ‚??a great example of a high-performance, cost-efficient system‚?? that¬*currently ranks as the #5 system on the Top500 list.

Read the Full Story (http://blogs.nvidia.com/2012/02/a-japanese-tale-of-two-supercomputers/).

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