RFHPC61: Xennet Free-Market Alternative to AWS

In this episode, the Radio Free HPC team looks at the Xennet initiative, a “public, distributed, and decentralized Supercomputer.” As the brainchild of Israeli computer scientist Ohad Asor, Xennet is essentially a free-market alternative to AWS that sounds a lot like the marriage of BitCoin and SETI@Home.

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RFHPC60: New TPCx-HS Benchmark for Big Data

In this episode, the Radio Free HPC team discusses the new TPCx-HS benchmark for Big Data. Designed to asses a broad range of system topologies and implementation methodologies, TPCx-HS is the industry’s first objective specification enabling measurement of both hardware and software including Hadoop Runtime, Hadoop Filesystem API compatible systems and MapReduce layers.

TPCx-HS is a major achievement in two distinct arenas,” said Raghunath Nambiar, chairman of the TPCx-HS committee, and a distinguished engineer at Cisco. ”TPCx-HS is the first vendor-neutral benchmark focused on big data systems – which have become a critical part of the enterprise IT ecosystem. Secondly, TPCx-HS is the first Express-class benchmark issued by the TPC. Express-class benchmarks are being developed in response to overwhelming demand for a turnkey alternative to enterprise-class benchmarks, which have distinct advantages but are also substantially more time-intensive and costly to run.”

The TPCx-HS benchmark specification is now available online. For more details, you can check out our slidecast interview with Raghunath Nambiar, chairman of the TPCx-HS committee.

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RFHPC59: Moving Processing Out to the Network

In this episode, the Radio Free HPC team discusses the concept of offloading computation to networked devices such a storage controllers. During a recent Analyst Call with Dan Olds, Mellanox described this technology as potential growth area. Henry wants to more about the interface to such and environment before he renders an opinion, while Rich notes that the companies like Solarflare have been doing this at the NIC level for level for several years now.

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RFHPC58: Does Linux Want to be More like the Mainframe?

In this episode, the Radio Free HPC teams looks at Henry Newman’s recent straw proposal for better resource management for Linux in HPC. His Enterprise Storage Forum column on this topic got Slashdotted recently, and the question remains: does Linux want to be more like the mainframe? Rich and Dan take him to task to learn more.

With next-generation technology like non-volatile memories and PCIe SSDs, there are going to be more resources in addition to the CPU that need to be scheduled to make sure everything fits in memory and does not overflow. I think the time has come for Linux – and likely other operating systems – to develop a more robust framework that can address the needs of future hardware and meet the requirements for scheduling resources. This framework is not going to be easy to develop, but it is needed by everything from databases and MapReduce to simple web queries.”

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RFHPC57: ISC’14 Wrapup Show

In this episode, the Radio Free HPC team looks at the highlights from the recent ISC’14 conference in Leipzig, Germany.

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RFHPC55: Summer Tech Reading

In this episode, the Radio Free HPC team looks at a couple of techie books for Summer reading.

  • Flash Boys is about a small group of Wall Street guys who figure out that the U.S. stock market has been rigged for the benefit of insiders and that, post–financial crisis, the markets have become not more free but less, and more controlled by the big Wall Street banks. Working at different firms, they come to this realization separately; but after they discover one another, the flash boys band together and set out to reform the financial markets.
  • Daemon. When a designer of computer games dies, he leaves behind a program that unravels the Internet’s interconnected world. It corrupts, kills, and runs independent of human control. It’s up to Detective Peter Sebeck to wrest the world from the malevolent virtual enemy before its ultimate purpose is realized: to dismantle society and bring about a new world order.

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RFHPC54: A Preview of the ISC’14 Student Cluster Challenge

In this episode, Rich and Dan preview the Student Cluster Competition at ISC’14 in Leipzig.

The Teams:

The third HPCAC-ISC Student Cluster Competition, featured at ISC’14, is an opportunity to showcase student expertise in a friendly yet spirited competition. The competition will feature small teams that compete to demonstrate the incredible capabilities of state-of- the-art high-performance cluster hardware and software. In a real-time challenge, teams of six undergraduate and/or high school students will build a small cluster of their own design on the ISC exhibit floor and race to demonstrate the greatest performance across a series of benchmarks and applications. The students will have a unique opportunity to learn, experience and demonstrate how high-performance computing influence our world and day-to-day learning. Held in collaboration of the HPC Advisory Council and ISC, the Student Cluster Competition is designed to introduce the next generation of students to the high performance computing world and community.

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RFHPC53: Google Ordered to Hit the History Erase Button

In this episode, the Radio Free HPC team looks at a grab bag of technical news items for the week of May 11, 2014:

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