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Supercomputing Biotech Technology

Steve Chen Making China's Supercomputer Grid 128

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the teraflops-to-spare dept.
nanotrends writes "Steve Chen was the principal designer of the Cray X-MP supercomputer. He recently created multi-teraflop blade based supercomputers for a Chinese company. He is now creating a supercomputer grid across China and he is working on a bio-supercomputer extension to human brains called THIRD-BRAIN. The THIRD-BRAIN project has significant 3 year and 5 year targets."
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Steve Chen Making China's Supercomputer Grid

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  • FTFS: (Score:1, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    he is working on a bio-supercomputer extension to human brains called THIRD-BRAIN.
    For some people this could be considered their first brain!
  • I wonder if anyone has tried adding a bunch of high performance GPU chips into the mix (e.g. NVidia or ATI's can run at close to 1 TFlop), or hook together a bunch of PS3 Cell chips? I realize these are more specialized, but they are SO fast that augmenting classic commodity chips with these specialized chips seems like it could greatly boost performance.
    • Yes, that's in progress. [hpcwire.com]
    • I think its safe to say nearly every major semiconductor company is toying with the idea of massive parallelism via small processors for a variety of tasks.
    • by rbanffy (584143)
      IIRC, IBM is going to deliver a system that's based on POWER and Cell chips for this exact reason - no commodity chip currently beats the Cell in floating-point brute force and POWER is quite good on everything else (including floating-point).

      We will see some very interesting machines in the next few years.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 25, 2006 @12:58PM (#16984696)
    >He is now creating a supercomputer grid across China

    Can you see it from space?
    • by sisinka (916373)
      not that you could see it, but to me it seems like China wants to build its own internet, which would solve their "problems" with free speech world and The Great Firewall of China.
      In Chen's words:
      When I have an Integral Grid, I can run Video-on-Demand and IPTV applications on one side of the Grid, and healthcare, education or financial services on the other side. After midnight, the whole Grid can be running Weather Forecasting.
  • Brains. Right. Just what some bot-master will want to send his zombies after.

  • Why is nobody commenting about this THIRD BRAIN thing ? This is the first time I hear about it, and the first time I hear about a serious government funded initiative for a brain-machine interface...
  • by BillGodfrey (127667)
    I guess he's found something to do with Google's money.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    It seems as though the team is working primarily on the number crunching power at the moment - which is all good and well. But when queried about the AI aspect, he says that they will just have to research it, even after the interviewer points out many other people have been working on this. I think he greatly underestimates the problem! Saying that all other AI researchers have not had an integral approach is a bit lacking as an answer to me.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by KillerCow (213458)

      He is now creating a supercomputer grid across China and he is working on a bio-supercomputer extension to human brains called THIRD-BRAIN.

      But when queried about the AI aspect, he says that they will just have to research it, even after the interviewer points out many other people have been working on this. I think he greatly underestimates the problem! Saying that all other AI researchers have not had an integral approach is a bit lacking as an answer to me.

      It's pure hubris. Even if he does make some AI b

  • by macadamia_harold (947445) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @01:40PM (#16984954) Homepage
    and he is working on a bio-supercomputer extension to human brains called THIRD-BRAIN. The THIRD-BRAIN project has significant 3 year and 5 year targets.

    Why call it Third Brain? I'm not terribly familiar with Anatomy, but I thought humans only had one brain. (Well, unless you're a guy. Then you've got an extra one in your pants that does most of the thinking)
    • by Jorrit (19549)
      We actually have two brains. One called 'small brain' (at least in Dutch it is called like that. I hope it translates to english directly) which is responsible for basic primitive operations like breathing and such and then the main part which is responsible for cognitive operations.

      Greetings,
    • by TubeSteak (669689)
      According to TFA

      1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cerebellum [wikipedia.org]
      2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cerebrum [wikipedia.org]
      3. Third Brain
    • by msobkow (48369)

      I believe they are talking about a philosophical model, treating a national compute infrastructure as a synthetic memory extension, not a wetwired biological interface. It's a colourful metaphore, not a literal description.

      Another way of viewing the Third Brain project might be the application of biological healing and load balancing aspects to a compute fabric. Muscles strengthen with use, the grid increases the measured capacity with need. Stop using them, and the proteins get reabsorbed and realloc

    • Well, there's forebrain, midbrain, and hindbrain, but then it should be FOURTH-BRAIN. Maybe he's thinking of Left-brain, right-brain ?
  • Strange... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Shaltenn (1031884)
    Strange... Call me crazy, but this reeks of Cyber-brains from Ghost in the Shell. XP
  • by Woogiemonger (628172) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @02:03PM (#16985078)
    Result = 42
  • "He is now creating a supercomputer grid across China and he is working on a bio-supercomputer extension to human brains called THIRD-BRAIN"

    Why did you jump from 1st brain to 3rd brain? WHERE IS THE 2nd BRAIN?

    someone stole the 2nd brain! call 9-1-1!
  • by c0nst (655115) on Saturday November 25, 2006 @02:18PM (#16985184)
    .. so that he can run Vista
  • I've got the first shot of THIRDBRAIN http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Ageofsteel.jpg [wikipedia.org]
  • A supercomputer is not better, because it is distributed. In fact distributed computing power is useless except for some very specific problems. All this "gird" nonsense does not solve a real problem, but serves to keep initiatives alive that were dead a decade ago when they were started.

    An this nonsense about extending the human brain? Have we not heard enough of this in the last 30 years or so? Having ''significant goals'' will not prevent this from being another case of lying to the public....
    • by RAMMS+EIN (578166)
      ``In fact distributed computing power is useless except for some very specific problems. All this "gird" nonsense does not solve a real problem, but serves to keep initiatives alive that were dead a decade ago when they were started.''

      Seems to me that botnets, spamming, and DDoS attacks are alive and kicking.
  • Back in the day we called it "Y2K consulting", today it's "Supercomputer grid consulting". The main difference is this guy has friends in the business whose products he will be pushing for a nice kickback, in addition to his hourly fee.

    Any twit can write "Qty: 1000" next to a system order when someone else is footing the bill.
  • ...and from the looks of it, it appears to make people go insane... http://www.threebrain.com/ [threebrain.com]
  • > "bio-supercomputer extension to human brains"

    Um... I'm from dairy country, and have learned to identify bullshit quite accurately.

    Especially when a cow-pie crawls up your leg and bites you on the ass.

    Sir, I have been bitten.

  • Sounds great! Who's going to be the first sucker- er- I mean brave volunteer to beta test it?
  • The Chinese get their money to invest in this stuff because we keep purchasing cheap shit at Walmart. I'm not picking on Walmart per se it's just that we are addicted to buying cheaply made gizmatrons made in China a cut rate prices and we gota have them. We are boosting the Chi Coms by doing this and 1. I read the other day that some clown had sold the Chi Coms the plans to the steal bomber and now this, what a great deal, they got our telemetry and guidance systems thanks to Former Pres. Clinton and now
  • Wasn't the "Third Brain" a Macguffin in the Spykids franchise?

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