IBM goes grid

Eray Ozkural (exa) erayo at
Fri Aug 3 08:33:06 PDT 2001

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Hi Jared,

On Friday 03 August 2001 05:46 pm, Jared Hodge wrote:
> 	So far distributed computing takes on two veins: controlled clusters
> (which I'd call parallel computing, but many people reserve that for
> single machines), and web-based codes.  I especially noticed this when
> talking to my graduate advisor and we had a bit of a semantic difference
> (other than the Indian - American thing) when I said I was interested in
> parallel computing, and he said he only did distributed computing.  I
> said Beowulf, he said he'd consider that to be distributed. 

I thought I was working on a parallel machine :)

If you're using message passing on a dedicated interconnection network, a 
beowulf system is clearly an MIMD machine as is the original intention. 
Though, you could use a beowulf class supercomputer for high availability, 
etc. which is not in the interest of parallel programming. 

A parallel computer is not necessarily a shared memory (or even SMP which is 
not the same thing) machine, as a matter of fact beowulf is all about 
constructing an open and affordable MIMD platform.

On the other hand, the boundary between distributed and parallel research is 
rapidly narrowing. There are a lot of systems which could be described as 


- -- 
Eray Ozkural (exa) <erayo at>
Comp. Sci. Dept., Bilkent University, Ankara
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