Commodity supercomputing, was: Re: NDAs Re: [Beowulf] Nvidia, cuda, tesla and... where's my double floating point?

John Hearns john.hearns at
Mon Jun 30 15:22:32 PDT 2008

On Mon, 2008-06-30 at 20:20 +0200, Toon Moene wrote:

> Since about a year, it's been clear to me that weather forecasting 
> (i.e., running a more or less sophisticated atmospheric model to provide 
> weather predictions) is going to be "mainstream" in the sense that every 
> business that needs such forecasts for its operations can simply run 
> them in-house.

Garbage in, garbage out.

By that I mean that the CPU horsepower may be more and more readily
affordable for businesses like that - let's say it is an ice-cream
wholesaler who would like to have a three day forecast to allow stocking
of their outlets with ice cream.
However, the models depend on input from sensor networks - not my area
of expertise, but I should imagine manned and unmanned weather stations,
ocean buoys to measure wave height, satellite sensors.
Do we see such data sources being made freely available, and in real
time (ie not archived data sets)??

Hopefully on topic the Manchester Guardian newspaper (you all know me
now for a Guardian reader) is running a "Free Our Data" campaign - to
pressurise Government to make freely available GIS type data and census
data which the Government has. I'm personally unconvinced of the
overwhelming justification for (say) the Ordnance Survey to give all of
its mapping data away for free.

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