SC10: The Big Picture on The World's Fastest Supercomputers

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PC World takes a look at the world’s biggest HPC conference. And while the focus of the show may be on the procurement of large-scale supercomputers, there’s a hint that the paradigm might be moving towards the Cloud Computing model:

Will cloud computing services such as Amazon EC2 aid the next generation of high-performance computing? That seems to be a distinct possibility, but as this paper notes there will be challenges in ensuring access to data. “Running a workflow in the cloud involves creating an environment in which tasks have access to the input files they require,” the paper states. “There are many existing storage systems that can be deployed in the cloud. These include various network and parallel file systems, object-based storage systems, and databases. One of the advantages of cloud computing and virtualization is that the user has control over what software is deployed, and how it is configured. However, this flexibility also imposes a burden on the user to determine what system software is appropriate for their application.”