Scalable High Performance Systems

Technology Masterclass at the Royal Society for Engineers (KIVI), the Netherlands

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To cope with increasing computation demands and with the data deluge, we have already started to build complex hardware and software ecosystems, exposed as cloud services to a vast user community (possibly tens of millions, world-wide). These users demand high performance or high throughput, and may switch at any time among the hundreds of service providers and technologies. Interesting new challenges emerge in the operation of the datacentres that form the infrastructure of cloud services, and in supporting the dynamic workloads of demanding users.

We discuss here several steps towards addressing these challenges. If we succeed, we may not only enable the advent of big science and engineering, and the almost complete automation of many large-scale processes, but also reduce the ecological footprint of datacentres and the entire ICT industry.