Intel has switched from trying to dominate the market for PCs, servers and high-performance computing (HPCs, commonly called supercomputers) to building a Scalable System Framework (SSF). With SSF, Intel is attempting to integrate the future of supercomputing with every level of computing, to create an ecosystem of hardware and software suppliers that can serve all systems, from the smallest Internet of Things (IoT) devices to the largest supercomputer installations.
Intel and its partners already have design wins that they will announce at Supercomputer 2015 (SC15, Nov. 15-20, Austin, Texas) including the Barcelona Supercomputing Center, The Alan Turing Institute, the National Strategic Computing Initiative and the University of Cambridge and Dell.
“We introduced the idea of a scalable system framework when we announced that Intel was priming the Coral concept of the U.S. government, specifically called Aurora–a 180 petaflops system to be delivered in the 2018 time frame,” Charles Wuischpard, vice president of the Data Center Group and general manager of the HPC Platform Group told us during a conference call giving a preview of their announcements at SC15. “We don't want to just build a one-off computer for the very top end, but an architecture that will serve customers at all levels.”
Since then Intel's Scalable Systems Framework has been adopted by Cray, Hewlett Packard, Lenova, Fujitsu, Ansys, SGI, Dell, SuperMicro, Altair, Colefax, Inspur, Penguin Computing, MSC Software and many others. All are now working together to have a data infrastructure and ecosystem that can enable systems of any size to follow the same basic rules for interoperability.