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Japan Planning Exascale Computer For 2020

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the go-big-or-go-home dept.

Supercomputing 38

Nerval's Lobster writes "Japan has thrown its hat into the ring for exascale computing, reported the country's newspapers. The goal: achieve one exaFLOPS of performance by 2020. Japan's finance ministry has agreed to begin work next fiscal year on a supercomputer with a performance capability 100 times that of the K computer, a 10-petaFLOPS computer that debuted as the most powerful supercomputer in the world in 2011. The midterm report for the new supercomputer was concluded Thursday, the Asahi Shimbun business daily reported. The Japan Times was slightly more conservative, reporting that the Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Ministry will seek funding to design the new machine in its fiscal 2014 budget request — implying that the project has not necessarily been approved. The science ministry is hoping to keep the cost of the new supercomputer below the ¥110 billion mark ($1.08 billion) that was required to develop the K computer, the paper reported. (Slashdot couldn't find any evidence that the project had been approved on the ministry Webpage, although the K computer was mentioned several times in a discussion of public-private partnerships.)"

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This is good, forward thinking... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43687343)

...for Windows 9.

More powerful than TOP500 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43687355)

I wonder how powerful is the most powerful computer. There is the TOP500 list but maybe there is unpublished computer in private industry or secret agency.

Re:More powerful than TOP500 (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | about a year and a half ago | (#43687603)

you mean like the complex being built by the NSA in the Utah desert. good luck finding stats on that if you do look forward to a visit by the black helicopters and SUV's.

priorities... (4, Interesting)

schlachter (862210) | about a year and a half ago | (#43687511)

we could build several of these for the price of a single B2 bomber.
wish we would spend our money on something like this instead.

Re:priorities... (1)

alphaminus (1809974) | about a year and a half ago | (#43687533)

Yeah but the B2 won't be obsolete by the time it's built. :P

Re:priorities... (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year and a half ago | (#43689467)

Yeah but the B2 won't be obsolete by the time it's built. :P

That didn't stop the F-22 project, did it?

Re: priorities... (1)

phobos512 (766371) | about a year and a half ago | (#43687599)

Just a gentle reminder...you wouldn't have the Internet if it hadn't been for the defense industry.

Re: priorities... (3, Interesting)

Laxori666 (748529) | about a year and a half ago | (#43688015)

Not necessarily true. Maybe it would have been developed by universities or something. It's like saying the radio wouldn't have existed if none of the people involved in creating the first radio were born. Other people would probably have invented it.

Re: priorities... (1)

schlachter (862210) | about a year and a half ago | (#43688311)

The Defense Industry has sent men to the moon in the 60s, built the internet, GPS, and super computers.

These companies don't only work for the Defense Department and they don't only build bombers.

Re: priorities... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43688707)

The "defense industry" and "DARPA" are not necessarily the same. Alas, enjoy your corporatism...

Re: priorities... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43691831)

Whenever i hear the word necessarily couched in argument, i nod dumbly in agreement, because i'm not necessarily listening to you anymore.

Re:priorities... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43691901)

How many supercomputers do you want the U.S. to pay for? All that nuclear bomb testing would probably annoy you as well if your kneejerk liberal response didn't short circuit your brain every time.

Re:priorities... (1)

iggymanz (596061) | about a year and a half ago | (#43691903)

damn, you're right. and think of how far we could push the state of the art of nuclear weapons design with those machines.

Brain (1)

slash.jit (2893213) | about a year and a half ago | (#43687543)

So how many flops does a human brain has ?

Re:Brain (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43688981)

Fewer than you think. A lot of people can't even count out proper change.

Re:Brain (1)

mangu (126918) | about a year and a half ago | (#43693687)

The top systems today are approximately at the same capacity as a human brain.

Brain neurons perform an operation that's similar to a dot product [wikipedia.org] . Their operation can be simulated by a weight for each dendrite that's multiplied by that dendrite's input.

In rough order of magnitude, a human brain has a hundred billion neurons, or 1e11 in standard computer language notation. Each neuron has an average of one thousand inputs, 1e3, and performs a hundred operations per second. That is 1e11 * 1e3 * 1e2 = 1e16 flops, or 10,000 teraflops.

According to Top500 [top500.org] , the highest powered computer system in November 2012 had a capacity of 17,590 teraflops.

This doesn't mean it has the same ability as a human brain, because there's also the software involved. There is a project, sponsored by Google, that tries to implement a computer system operating close to what the human brain does.

When they tested that system presenting to it one million random screenshots from Youtube videos, the system learned all by itself to recognize objects that appeared on those videos, like human faces and cats.

There's a good technical tutorial on this system at the Stanford university site [stanford.edu] , and a more basic explanation can be found in several popular articles if you google for "deep learning".

Re:Brain (1)

slash.jit (2893213) | about a year and a half ago | (#43709139)

thanks for the info

Collosus... (-1, Redundant)

TimO_Florida (2894381) | about a year and a half ago | (#43687585)

It's all fun and games until it links up with Guardian and starts giving orders.... Full Movie: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wBhTI2lRi0 [youtube.com]

About damn time (3, Funny)

bahaa elaila (2920349) | about a year and a half ago | (#43687707)

I totally concur with japan, i guess the emperor was frustrated at the performance of photoshop CS6. That's the type of computers Adobe makes multimedia editing software for

Re:About damn time (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43687811)

You ended your sentence with a preposition, to.

Re:About damn time (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | about a year and a half ago | (#43689687)

What does a Japanese man need with CS6 when he can create beautiful art with Microsoft Excel [kotaku.com] .

US will probably have a couple by 2018 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43687765)

Both Cray and IBM are likely to field at least one exaflop system each in the 2018 time frame. US Department of Energy was on track to fund them at their national laboratories (at a "defense" lab like ORNL and a "science" lab like ANL). But, the sequester seems to be a permanent fixture on the landscape now, and there is evidence that DoE will have to stretch out the schedule as a result.

Bitcoin (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43687911)

Meanwhile, the Bitcoin network has already broken the equivalent of the exaFLOP barrier. Of course you can't coordinate this computing power in the same way, but it's interesting to note.

1996 teraflop 2006 petaflop on Linpack (2)

peter303 (12292) | about a year and a half ago | (#43687957)

Moores law predicts 1000x per 15 years.

Re:1996 teraflop 2006 petaflop on Linpack (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43688517)

Good grief. I read this as "GM plans Escalade Computer for 2020".

Re:1996 teraflop 2006 petaflop on Linpack (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43688729)

Moore's law is about cost...

Electricity bill (2)

loufoque (1400831) | about a year and a half ago | (#43688135)

The main challenge of exascale computing is energy efficiency. It's going to cost 100 million dollars per year in electricity alone.

...and MTBF. (1)

gentryx (759438) | about a year and a half ago | (#43689123)

Power consumption and mean time between failure are the current major challenges. What good would a exa-scale supercomputer be, if you couldn not run a full-system job on it for even one hour?

Re:...and MTBF. (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year and a half ago | (#43689491)

What good would a exa-scale supercomputer be, if you couldn not run a full-system job on it for even one hour?

It would be one hour more worth than current Japanese Fifth Generation Computer Systems.

If they build robots, might as well... (1)

ikhider (2837593) | about a year and a half ago | (#43688661)

Things we have now, like CD's, rocket ships, the internet, tablet computers, televideo started off as science fiction and Japan is a M A S S I V E exporter of sci-fi, from anime to manga to the Haikasoru sci-fi book series--so it makes sense they build the odd super computer.

Re:If they build robots, might as well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43692225)

Many countries will have exaflops supercomputers around 2018-2022. This is just Japan making its plans official.

fuc4 A CUM (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43690661)

encountered while states that there succeeses with the ink splashes across channel #GNAA on - Netcraft has is the group that about C700 users and the bottom

mod dOwn (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43691283)

charnel Shous$e.

What are they going to use it for? (1)

satuon (1822492) | about a year and a half ago | (#43693883)

Are there enough heavy-computing tasks that will keep this computer occupied? Is there a shortage of computing power currently?

Re:What are they going to use it for? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43694559)

Are there enough heavy-computing tasks that will keep this computer occupied?
Yes.

Is there a shortage of computing power currently?
Yes.

Re:What are they going to use it for? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43698523)

There's an endless number of problems for which you can get better results from more CPU. Anything that involves 3-d or higher differential equations: weather, fluid dynamics, quantum mechanics.

let me guess (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43694673)

this machine will carry out ecological research like their Earth supercomputer. Just like whaling is carried out for "scientific research"

Useage scenario (1)

Squatting_Dog (96576) | about a year and a half ago | (#43695221)

I suppose the Japanese will be using this proposed new behemoth to model their future planning for new nuclear power pla......oh wait...

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