Google Surpasses Supercomputer Community, Unnoticed?

One of the rules of the TOP500 list is that a ranked system has to be at a single facility. In today’s world of networked computing, it seems to me that this notion has become antiquated, especially after reading this article by Brough Turner:
“Today, Google has perhaps 20 to 100 petaFLOPs of processing power in their distributed computing system. In mid-2006, the New York Times estimated Google had 450,000 interconnected servers in their various server farms. Their capital budget continues to expand, they continue to hirer (including for very super-computer specific jobs) and they are building a global fiber optic network to better connect their distributed server farms, so it’s reasonable to assume Google has well over 500,000 servers on-line today. None of these machines is more than 3 years old with an average age nearer 15 months based on the economics described in the 2003 paper. A new server for late 2007 and early 2008 has dual quad-core Xeon processors at 2.5 GHz or 3 GHz. Intel claims the quad-core Xeon provides 77-81 gigaFLOPS and today’s servers have two such processors, i.e. 160 GFLOPS. Let’s discount that for Intel hype and the fact that the average Google server is whatever commercial machines of 1/2007 could do — say 100 GFLOPS. And lets assume they haven’t added new buildings and new servers and have only 500,000 machines in their cluster. That’s still 50 petaFLOPS.” Full Story

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About Rich
FlexRex began his life as a cartoon character I created a Sun Microsystems. As the world's first "fictional blogger," he appeared in numerous parody films that made fun of the whole work-from-home thing. Somewhere along the line, the Sun IT department adopted FlexRex as their spokesman in a half-dozen security awareness films for employees. So when I left Sun recently, I started FlexRex Communications, a Marketing company in Portland, Oregon.

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