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Fujitsu: Why we chose 64-bit ARM over SPARC for our exascale super

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

"it's also much harder to extract peak performance from them with apps that feature large memory footprints."

At one time the answer might have been to look for a cache-friendly implementation of the algorithm(s) in question (or, alternatively, a different algorithm for the same requirement).

At one time a good place to start looking for cache-friendliness in many cases might have been the Kuch and Associates, Inc's preprocessor(s), a source to source transformer that understands the behaviours of particular algorithms and particular target processors and can make the most of available resources without requiring too much expertise on behalf of the user/programmer (e.g. by automated parallelisation for use on multi-core systems).

So far as I recall, Intel bought KAI and took the preprocessor off the market, and people mostly stopped buying chips other than x86 for serious numbercrunching (exceptions apply). The techniques are still valid, whether they're relevant or not is a different question, and who needs expertise when the people that really care (financial traders etc) just throw money at the problem and buy weird hardware (e.g. FPGA-based coprocessors and such).

"some problems are inherently awkward"

Ain't that the truth.

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