Daily Archives: 09/01/2004

Desktop Clustered Computing

Never mind that new G5 iMac, check out the new object of my techno-lust: Silicon Valley startup Orion Multisystems announced their initial line of Orion Cluster Workstations of desktop workstations featuring clustered Transmeta low power Efficeon processors for increased computing power and running Fedora Linux 2.6.6. The base unit has 12 processors, 24 gigabytes of memory and 1.4 terabytes of disk space and starts at $10,000. The 96 processor model includes 192 gigabytes of RAM and 9.6 terabytes of disk storage and can run up to $100,000.

Ooof. That’s some serious hardware. I’m amazed they can draw enough power from an electrical socket to power one of these things. The DS-96 processor model will draw nearly 1500 watts! Better not have anything else plugged in on that outlet.

Performance is rated at 300 gigaflops for the 96 processor unit, 36 gigaflops for the 12 processor model. Obviously these things are not geared for home use. Wolfram’s Mathematica has signed on as a major backer for the workstations, and other target users include computer animators, physicists, meteorologists, and geneticists.

The company got a fair bit of press the last couple days, including this article by John Markoff in the New York Times.

GTA Bid $150 Million

So the Guam Telephone Authority management and board announced their acceptance of the winning bid for GTA’s privatization, a$150 million offer from TeleGuam, a consortium backed by Shamrock Capitol Growth Fund. TeleGuam promises no rate increases for five years, expanded telecommunications and digital cable services, and a sweetheart deal for the current employees of GTA. Of course this is still a bid, subject to approval by the governor and the legislature. And I am sure the A.G. is itching to gum up the works and forestall any divesture of government assets.