The Chinese government can keep a secret probably as well as any organisation on the planet, but pride will get the best of anyone - at least some of the time. And so it is that Xiangke Liao, the professor from the National University of Defense Technology has outed the details of the "Tianhe-2" massively parallel supercomputer …
Are you sure it doesn't translate to Skynet?
Mine is the leather jacket
Re: Sky River
And mine is the Google Glass
Re: Sky River
Skynet would be Tian wang (天网).
Re: Sky River
Insert wang jokes here.
Re: wang jokes
Butt, do not insert wang.
Which is ironic because these supercomputer battles do tend to be one giant dick measuring battle. I wonder to what degree these systems are being completely utilised.
They need this sort of computing power to work out the debt the US owes it's "enemny".
Greg Egan predicted the cloud quite well in the 90s. Here he is on SciFictional Chinese Supercomputing.
In a way, Luminous was a product of this strange transition from communism to not-communism in a thousand tiny steps. No one else, not even the U.S. defense research establishment, possessed a single machine with so much power. The rest of the world had succumbed long ago to networking, giving up their imposing supercomputers with their difficult architecture and customized chips for a few hundred of the latest mass-produced work stations. In fact, the biggest computing feats of the twenty-first century had all been farmed out over the Internet to thousands of volunteers, to run on their machines whenever the processors would otherwise be idle. (...)
Luminous was, literally, a computer made of light. It came into existence when a vacuum chamber, a cube five meters wide, was filled with an elaborate standing wave created by three vast arrays of high-powered lasers. A coherent electron beam was fed into the chamber-and just as a finely machined grating built of solid matter could diffract a beam of light, a sufficiently ordered (and sufficiently intense) configuration of light could diffract a beam of matter.
The electrons were redirected from layer to layer of the light cube, recombining and interfering at each stage, every change in their phase and intensity performing an appropriate computation-and the whole system could be reconfigured, nanosecond by nanosecond, into complex new "hardware" optimized for the calculations at hand. The auxilliary supercomputers controlling the laser arrays could design, and then instantly build, the perfect machine of light to carry out each particular stage of any program.
It was, of course, fiendishly difficult technology, incredibly expensive and temperamental. The chance of ever putting it on the desktops of Tetris-playing accountants was zero, so nobody in the West had bothered to pursue it. And this cumbersome, unwieldy, impractical machine ran faster than every piece of silicon hanging off the Internet, combined.
All the worry about Chinese intelligence/ cyber-snooping/ etc ... and it's still Powered by Intel...
...another cup of Irony anyone?
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