Supercomputing at less than the cost of a loaf of bread

Star-P On-Demand lets users tap into 168 processor cores on Intel quad chips

A supercomputing, pay-per-use service that would make supercomputing affordable to small and mid-sized businesses as well individuals who need added computation power, was announced Tuesday.

Interactive Supercomputing, a US-based company said its service, called Star-P On-Demand lets users tap into 168 processor cores on Intel quad chips.

This is not a software-as-a-service offering that gives users access to the application as well as the compute ability. Instead, users would take an application they already have installed on their laptop or workstation, such as MatLab, the computational software developed by The MathWorks, and offload intensive computational work to the supercomputing platform.

The cost is US$2.77 per processor core per hour, or about US$465 an hour for utilizing all the cores. The user connects using Secure Shell or SSH, according to Dave Gibson, who heads business development at Interactive. The computer is run by Interactive's partner Tsunamic Technologies.

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