My Fun Field trip

Discussion in 'Community' started by Kwyjibo, Feb 11, 2004.

  1. Kwyjibo macrumors 68040


    Nov 5, 2002
    To start off this story I'm a student on the University of Illinois and I'm a freshman enrolled in this NPRE 101 class, or introduction to energy sources. In a special section you go on field trips to strange parts of the campus every tuesday. I happen to be in that section so I go on lots of fun trips. The most recent was the best so far because we made a trip to the Advanced Computer Building.

    The Advanced Computer building is the home of the NCSA. The building was all secure and there was an obvious camera presence all over. Our tour guide gave a little histroy and its the home of Mosaic which many people probably remember. Well we walked through and the guy explained they were approaching a petabyte of storage and would probably reach that goal by summer at the latest. Then we moved on to the computing clusters and they showed us some older linux clusters and then they moved to the new stuff. He walked us over to a brand new cluster that comes in #4 on the most powerful list right behind the VT mac cluster. He was also confident that if he had further time ot bench mark he would make the nubmer 3 spot. I was soo impressed to be able to see this type of facility.

    Then we walked downstairs and go to walk through the air conditioner. All of the tour was amazing and it was astonishing to think about all the histroy and power in the rooms I walked through. I don't have many specs for the machine because I was wandering off but i'm sure they are online somewhere.

    well theres my coolest field trip so far I thought you guys might enjoy the tale.
  2. G4scott macrumors 68020


    Jan 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    I got to see our supercomputers on campus at The University of Texas. There are 2 very old supercomputer clusters, one of which consists of something like 6 racks of desktop PC's, and another which is just about 16 desktop PC's under a table with a monitor on top... We're getting something like a 2 or 3 teraflop supercomputer off campus, made from dell boxes, and designed by cray. I talked to one of the guys in charge of it last semester, and brought up the Virginia Tech cluster, but he didn't seem too interested in talking about it... They're also renovating the 4th floor of our Advanced Computational Engineering Sciences (ACES) building, supposedly for tons of computing equipment. It's neat to be able to see the history of these things. Our university's first supercomputer was huge. It was in this basement room under our main building. I can't remember exactly how big it was, but it used vacuum tubes, and was extraordinarily fast for it's time... Now, I think my graphing calculator can do more, but it's interesting to hear about these things...

    Here's some info about our supercomputer...

    It's no G5 cluster, though, and I think it costed more...
  3. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    Thank you Kwyjibo, for letting us know about you fun trip. I hope that you will continue to have more.
  4. Kwyjibo thread starter macrumors 68040


    Nov 5, 2002
    Haha at my school ACES means Agricultural and Consumer, and Environmental Sciences ..... its the farming section/ students

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