A new major collaborative project is set to transform the UK pharmaceutical industry by enabling the manufacturing processes of the innovative medicines of the future to be designed digitally. The STFC Hartree Centre is a partner in the £20.4m ADDoPT (Advanced Digital Design of Pharmaceutical Therapeutics) project, which involves major pharmaceutical companies, Pfizer, GSK, AstraZeneca and Bristol-Myers Squibb.
The ASC Student Supercomputer Challenge (ASC16) Training kicked off in Beijing on January 26. First initiated and organized in China, ASC16 has gained support from experts and technology organizations in US, Europe, and Asia. With a goal to inspire more innovative applications in various fields, it has attracted more and more talent to supercomputing and has greatly promoted communications in the supercomputing community throughout the world. Within 5 years, the ASC Student Supercomputer Challenge has become the world’s largest supercomputing hackathon.
Today Cray announced a $36 million contract to upgrade and expand the Cray XC supercomputers and Cray Sonexion storage system at the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF). When the project is completed, the enhanced systems will allow the world-class numerical weather prediction and research center to continue to drive improvements in its highly-complex models to provide more accurate weather forecasts.
“The Intel’s next generation Xeon Phi processor family x200 product (code-name Knights Landing) brings in new memory technology, a high bandwidth on package memory called Multi-Channel DRAM (MCDRAM) in addition to the traditional DDR4. MCDRAM is a high bandwidth (~4x more than DDR4), low capacity (up to 16GB) memory, packaged with the Knights Landing Silicon. MCDRAM can be configured as a third level cache (memory side cache) or as a distinct NUMA node (allocatable memory) or somewhere in between. With the different memory modes by which the system can be booted, it becomes very challenging from a software perspective to understand the best mode suitable for an application.”
The consensus of the panel was that making full use of Intel SSF requires system thinking at the highest level. This entails deep collaboration with the company’s application end-user customers as well as with its OEM partners, who have to design, build and support these systems at the customer site. Mark Seager commented: “For the high-end we’re going after density and (solving) the power problem to create very dense solutions that, in many cases, are water-cooled going forward. We are also asking how can we do a less dense design where cost is more of a driver.” In the latter case, lower end solutions can relinquish some scalability features while still retaining application efficiency.
Today the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) announced that the Lonestar 5 supercomputer is in full production and is ready to contribute to advancing science across the state of Texas. Managed by TACC, the center’s second petaflop system is primed to be a leading computing resource for the engineering and science research community. “An analysis of strong-scaling on Lonestar 5 shows gains over other comparable resources,” said Scott Waibel, a graduate student in the Department of Geological Sciences at Portland State University. “Lonestar 5 provides the perfect high performance computing resource for our efforts.”
Today Allinea announced that Oak Ridge National Laboratory has deployed its code performance profiler Allinea MAP in strength on the Titan supercomputer. Allinea MAP enables developers of software for supercomputers of all sizes to produce faster code. Its deployment on Titan will help to use the system’s 299,008 CPU cores and 18,688 GPUs more efficiently. Software teams at Oak Ridge are also preparing for the arrival of the next generation supercomputer, the Summit pre-Exascale system – which will be capable of over 150 PetaFLOPS in 2018.
“Computers are an invaluable tool for most scientific fields. It is used to process measurement data and make simulation models of e.g. the climate or the universe. Brian Vinter talks about what makes a computer a supercomputer, and why it is so hard to build and program supercomputers.”
Today Baidu’s Silicon Valley AI Lab (SVAIL) released Warp-CTC open source software for the machine learning community. Warp-CTC is an implementation of the #CTC algorithm for #CPUs and NVIDIA #GPUs. “According to SVAIL, Warp-CTC is 10-400x faster than current implementations. It makes end-to-end deep learning easier and faster so researchers can make progress more rapidly.”
The fastest supercomputers are built with the fastest microprocessor chips, which in turn are built upon the fastest switching technology. But, even the best semiconductors are reaching their limits as more is demanded of them. In the closing months of this year, came news of several developments that could break through silicon’s performance barrier and herald an age of smaller, faster, lower-power chips. It is possible that they could be commercially viable in the next few years.