Charles Haddadis latest Byte of the Apple column is all about Virginia Techis new Power Mac G5 super computer project. To catch you up, it was announced earlier this month that the university would be taking 1,100 dual processor Power Mac G5s and hooking them together in a 2200 CPU cluster. The result should be one of the worldis top super computers, courtesy of the G5. Charles Haddad says that this is a ringing endorsement of both Apple and the G5 itself, and that Apple will benefit from this "big time." From the article:
While it wasnit Appleis idea, the company stands to benefit big-time. The opportunity isnit in supercomputing itself, a small market in which Apple has no standing. But Virginia Techis progress in building a Mac-based supercomputer represents a high-profile endorsement of Appleis new G5 desktop, released just weeks ago, and the first desktop to use a 64-bit microprocessor. Says Charles Wolf, who follows Apple for investment boutique Needham & Co.: "Virginia Tech is in effect blessing the G5 and its cost-effectiveness."
This endorsement couldnit come at a better moment. It should mute the uproar in the Wintel community sparked by Appleis claims that the G5 is the fastest, most powerful desktop on the market today. And it should impress the new chipis intended market of graphic and multimedia professionals, who need speed and computing firepower almost as much as scientists.
Thereis a lot more information in the full article, including comments on how the system is being built on the cheap, how Apple is not a player in the super computer market, and some other background information. We recommend the column as a good read.