My first software-defined supercompute cluster

This week on the Adaptive Computing blog, I write about what it was like to start up a modest supercomputer on the Amazon cloud. Check it out

Supercomputing hardware is cool, as this photo of the ALMA correlator in Chile demonstrates. But it’s hard to beat the amazing flexibility of software-based clusters in the cloud. Photo credit: ESO (Wikimedia Commons)

The third half of computational economics

If you look up “computational economics” on wikipedia, you’ll find out all about software models that economists use to study game theory, recessions, scarcity, and so forth.

Tweak your search terms a bit, and google takes you to discussions about the economics of the computer industry–how Moore’s Law plays out in changing prices for compute power, why cloud computing and cheap GPUs are changing how much we expect to pay, how the mobile revolution is killing traditional PCs, what the job market looks like for us software geeks.

That’s all well and good.

But there is a third half of the computer+economics interaction that I don’t hear anybody talking about.

3-fingers

My buddy Ken Ebert likes to joke about incomplete thinking by saying, “There are 2 aspects of the issue…” — while he raises three fingers. :-) Interestingly, this three-fingered gesture is a symbol of sustainable development, which connects nicely to our theme of economics. Photo credit: \!/_PeacePlusOne (Flickr)

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