Unmatched : 50 years of Supercomputing by David Barkai

Over here at Cray-history.net we pleased to see the release of this work by Cray Colleague David Barkai. It’s a great read and I certainly filled in a few gaps in my understanding of HPC history.

David adds:

“I have spent the last few years writing a book about HPC. It is now done and in production, for a release in mid-October. Drawing on my own experiences and aided by those of many others in our community, I tell a story that slices through HPC’s evolution, both incremental and dramatic, over the last 50 years.
About the book:
This book is a journey delineated as five decade-long ‘epochs’ defined by the systems’ architectural themes: vector processors, multi-processors, microprocessors, clusters, and accelerators and cloud computing. The final part examines key issues of HPC and discusses where it might be headed.
A central goal of this book is to show how computing power has been applied, and, more importantly, how it has impacted and benefitted society. To this end, the use of HPC is illustrated in a range of industries and applications, from weather and climate modeling to engineering and life sciences. As such, this book appeals to both students and general readers with an interest in
HPC, as well as industry professionals looking to revolutionize their practice.”

Best of luck with the book launch David. Available for pre-order from Amazon here 

Publisher details here


Table of Contents


Short Introduction to Scientific Computing

Part I The Epoch of Big Iron
Chapter 1: In the Old Days…
Chapter 2: Vector Processes
Chapter 3: Vectorizing Applications
Chapter 4: Numerical Weather Prediction
Chapter 5: Vector Processors for Weather

Part II The Epoch of Multiprocessors
Chapter 6: Macro Parallelism
Chapter 7: Making Use of Multi-Processors
Chapter 8: Attached Processors, Microprocessors, and Mini-Supers
Chapter 9: Studying the Standard Model
Chapter 10: HPC for the Automotive Design – Early Days
Chapter 11: End of an Era

Part III The Epoch of Microprocessors
Chapter 12: Towards Massive Parallelism
Chapter 13: Engineering with HPC
Chapter 14: HPC for the Aero Industry
Chapter 15: The WRF Story
Chapter 16: Planning Ahead

Part IV The Epoch of Clusters
Chapter 17: Standardization
Chapter 18: HPC at Intel
Chapter 19: High Productivity in HPC
Chapter 20: Weather Models’ Impact on Our Lives
Chapter 21: Computational Life Sciences
Chapter 22: Genomics and Beyond

Part V The Epoch of Accelerators and Cloud
Chapter 23: Codesign
Chapter 24 The Changing Face of HPC
Chapter 25: HPC in the Cloud
Chapter 26: The NCAR Models
Chapter 27: Modelling the Earth System
Chapter 28: HPC, Cloud and AI for Engineering
Chapter 29: Two Scientific Anecdotes: LIGO, Fusion
Chapter 30: The COVID-19 Campaign

Part VI Wrap Up and Outlook
Chapter 31: P is for Performance
Chapter 32: Fortran: The Coarrays Story
Chapter 33: Fortran Today
Chapter 34: Thoughts from the Guardians of Fortran
Chapter 35: Measure of HPC Impact
Chapter 36: Looking Forward

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