Feldman's Hits and Misses of 2009

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Michael over at HPCwire has an interesting blog post with the HPC hits and misses of 2009. Here’s a hit to whet your appetite

Hit: InfiniBand Rising

Despite the commercial debut of many 10GbE offerings this year, InfiniBand adoption in HPC continued to grow in 2009. InfiniBand is deployed in 182 of the TOP500 supercomputers, representing a 28 percent year-over-year increase. Data from InterSect360 and anecdotal evidence points to a dominance of InfiniBand in new HPC deployments. With recent innovations like an MPI offload capability, a memory transfer offload for GPUs, and a performance roadmap that Ethernet can’t match, I suspect InfiniBand’s best days are still ahead of it.

And here’s a miss I don’t totally agree with

While the HPC market was spared from the worst effects of the brutal economy, a number of vendors in the space were forced to shut their doors, while others were acquired by their healthier brethren. Sun Microsystems, SGI, SiCortex, Woven Systems, RapidMind, Cilk Arts, Interactive Supercomputing, DRC Computer, Quadrics, ClearSpeed, and Verari Systems all became victims of the Great Recession of 2009. Our feature article tells the tale.

RapidMind, Cilk, and Interactive were all aquired by Intel, and Interactive Supercomputing was acquired by Microsoft. Michael may be right that those acquisitions were driven by the faltering economy, but if so that doesn’t match the impression I have that those companies were not any less healthy than any of the other small businesses that survived, they just happened to have good technology at a time that the buyers had cash in hand.


  1. […] excellent blogs and news sites are giving perspectives on 2009. Magazine sites are talking about the hits in HPC […]


  1. It’d be hard for anyone other than the executives of those companies to know for sure what led to their acquisitions.

    Its conceivable that the poor economy played a part in the acquisitions. For example, one or more might have been facing cash flow problems, and just didn’t have many other options than to sell the company. Whereas in a booming economy, they might have been able to raise money from other investors, get lines of credit, had more customers, etc.

    But I tend to agree that they simply had technology that Intel and Microsoft felt they needed quickly, and were willing to pay for. All three of these companies were focusing on software for developing software, and HPC customers are notorious for not wanting to pay for such software ;-(. So being acquired by a larger company was a likely exit strategy all along…