A supercomputer with components originally developed for Sony’s PlayStation video-game console has become the world’s fastest computer, CIO Today reports. IBM said the computer, nicknamed Roadrunner, can process more than 1,000 trillion calculations per second, known as a petaflop. Built for the Energy Department’s Los Alamos lab with off-the-shelf components, Roadrunner is named for the state bird of New Mexico and will be used to monitor the U.S. nuclear-weapons stockpile. Roadrunner cost $133 million and is twice as fast as IBM’s Blue Gene system, which had been considered the world’s most powerful. Along with nearly 7,000 dual-core processors from Advanced Micro Devices, the Roadrunner also has almost 13,000 improved Cell microprocessors originally developed by IBM, Toshiba, and Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 3. "Roadrunner tells us about what will happen in the next decade," said Horst Simon, associate laboratory director for computer science at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. "Technology is coming from the consumer electronics market, and the innovation is happening first in terms of cell phones and embedded electronics."
Click here for the full story