[Beowulf] Intro question

Greg Lindahl lindahl at pbm.com
Fri Dec 5 11:03:10 PST 2008

On Fri, Dec 05, 2008 at 11:17:30AM -0500, Lawrence Stewart wrote:

> In principle this might work, if you get the problem statement right,
> and you can design and build the machine before the general purpose
> machines catch up, and you don't make any mistakes, and after it is
> built you can keep designing new ones.  In practice it always seems to
> take longer than you expected and cost more, and maybe that 7 bit ALU
> really has to be changed to an 8 bit ALU to keep the precision up.

I've seen David talk about this machine a couple of time, and he
addressed this issue: he realizes it's risky, and he was hoping to
advance the state of the art by 5 years over a commodity cluster.

While I was at D. E. Shaw (1996), the most effective headhunter for
the systems department was the guy who cold-called sysadmins at good
computer science departments. My office-mate was formally a sysadmin
at Princeton. He still lived there, too; rgb might want to keep mass
transit in mind when he's dissing living near NYC.

For the strategies, they mostly hired folks who'd just finished
degrees in the hard sciences.

-- greg

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