How long will it be before Amazon Web Services is the largest provider of raw server capacity in the world, outselling the tier one server makers who actually peddle boxes directly or through the channel to customers? Look, I think I know how you feel about this, with a server close enough to my feet right this second to kick it …
Isn't instantly scalable access to system resources what everyone had been working towards for decades? Isn't that what many shops had in-house with their Z's?
Amazon was forced to create a scalable infrastructure to support their primary business model. In working all that out it just makes sense for them to spend a bit more and sell their excess capacity, which is what they are doing. I'm all for it!
The rubber will really hit the road when/if some truly HPC applications utilize the system. If the fog can truly scale with security there will be no reason for specialty firms like Cray and no place for big boxes from IBM.
In truth I'd buy foggy infrastructure from Cray or IBM for HPC because I have faith in their backend. They don't mess around. I'm not sure a retailer (Amazon) has a vested interest in making sure my trial models really stand up to scrutiny from an engineering perspective.
Crog? Zoud? How would you name a cloud/fog from a proven vendor. Maybe that's why they don't do it... Maybe they should, if AWS really works; big iron in-house (the big money) might not have a place in a few years.
The secret sauce in HPC is in the interconnects, something that "cloud" and cloudier-than-that doesn't do very well. Whether the vendor is "proven" doesn't count for very much here, as they tend to stick to delivering hardware, not running it.
"The secret sauce in HPC is in the interconnects, something that "cloud" and cloudier-than-that doesn't do very well."
As well as that Amazon's cloud servers are virtual, not real (as far as I know). That means sharing the physical hardware with whoever else is using the service at the same time. Not ideal when actually trying to extract maximum compute power!
Not all HPC work loads need high performance interconnect. Fluid dynamics does, protein folding doesn't I think. But a Cray or K machine will always have an edge...
Isn't a cloud desk a bit insubstantial to be practical? Surely even a pencil would fall right through it. Still, it must be nice and portable.
big iron love
"I love big Iron"
I used to love big iron too. Even configuring it was kind of fun... until I found better things in life. Now I send my code to App Engine end work on my underwater basket-weaving skills instead ( http://xkcd.com/1052/ ).