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make do and mend - meet the supercomputer cobbled together on a shoestring from obsolete pcs

by:QY Precision      2019-09-29
Two researchers in Tennessee once again showed that one person\'s garbage is the wealth of another person.
They made up a usable supercomputer with dozens of computers with Intel 486 processors --
Today\'s home computer users will scoff at these machines.
In 1996, computer scientist Forrest Hoffman and landscape ecologist WillHargrove of the environmental science department of Oak Ridge National Laboratory asked the manager of the laboratory to fund the purchase of 16 states-of-the-
The artistic Pentium computer that creates the \"beowufu\" supercomputer.
Beowulf consists of multiple connected PCs that attack difficult calculations by separating them and entrusting these more manageable tasks to smaller processors.
Their request was rejected.
\"We are really frustrated,\" Hoffman said . \".
\"But we will not give up.
\"In the exchange store in the lab, researchers collected the necessary network equipment and 486 computers, which are now considered outdated, by pestering colleagues.
In an empty lab, they assembled a stone stove in their spare time.
The name comes from the stone soup fable in which a hungry soldier claims that he will make soup with stone and then convince people to donate enough \"extra\" ingredients to make real soup
Eight months later, the stone market developed into a huge collection of 56 Internet computers that can run one.
5 billion floating
The second operation.
This is not enough for a truly large computing task, such as simulating the flow of radiation in space.
But for the Hargrove project, this is enough: show on a map with a resolution of one square kilometer how the conditions for plant growth vary across the United States.
In a month or two, when researchers expand the stone market to the target of 64 computers, the machine will be able to integrate 10 variables that affect plant growth, including temperature, rainfall
John Cobb, a computer expert at Oak Ridge, said: \"In terms of force, this is not the most manly thing . \".
But he added that since its components are basically free, Stone super may create new records for another popular computer benchmark-the ratio of performance to price.
Hoffman also plans to give stone soup when people start throwing away their current computer.
\"In the coming year or so, we think we will start getting the donated Pentiums,\" he said . \".
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