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Thread: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

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    World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    This Chinese TOP500 champ uses 10.6 million home-grown ShenWei processor cores.
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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Post withdrawn following moderators advice..and not wishing to cause any potential problems for Hexus.
    Last edited by Bagpuss; 21-06-2016 at 11:39 AM.

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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Quote Originally Posted by Bagpuss View Post
    ...in the sense that the Chinese government, desperate for an indigenous CPU manufacturer, hacked into a western CPU companies servers and 'borrowed' the blueprints.

    China has built it's home grown tech & defence companies off the back of intellectual property theft. ...
    Got any hard evidence to back any of that up? If you don't I'd respectfully suggest that you refrain from slandering the Chinese government on a public forum; I doubt they'd take kindly to it. CERTAINLY keep such potentially slanderous comments off Hexus - the last thing this site needs is probing by a foreign government...

    Most speculation suggests that the DEC Alpha processors were the main design influence on the Chinese chips - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SW26010

    It's certainly not an x86 core, so I doubt AMD care either way. And even if it was, I suspect it'd be Intel taking the closest look, since they own the IP for x86.

    Let's be honest, there's a limited number of ways to push calculations through a CPU. It's probably close to impossible to design a usefully working CPU that isn't similar to an already existing core, and I suspect there's enough information in the public domain to get you started without needing any risky corporate subterfuge. It makes no sense to try to steal CPU designs when you can just throw engineers at the problem (generating skilled employment as a nice side effect) until something sticks.

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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Quote Originally Posted by Bagpuss View Post
    Lol..'locally designed'

    Yeah in the sense that the Chinese government, desperate for an indigenous CPU manufacturer, hacked into a western CPU companies servers and 'borrowed' the blueprints.

    China has built it's home grown tech & defence companies off the back of intellectual property theft.

    I bet AMD would like a close up look at those cores.
    That seems harsh.

    There will be some common features, it is generally accepted that the Chinese authorities pulled apart a DEC Alpha to work out how it ticked and more importantly went so damn fast. AMD on the other hand could just hire key members of the old DEC design team.

    But in both cases that happened a long time ago, giving us the Athlon and ShenWei SW-1. The world has moved on and, here's the kicker, the best estimate I could find is that China has 650000 university engineering graduates every single year. Think of that number, that's more than the population of Sheffield every single year. Perhaps you will scoff that they can't educate that many people to a high standard, but they have been doing this sort of technical emphasis for some time now and out of that many people just through sheer weight of numbers some of them are going to be damned clever and interested in CPU design.

    Even if they didn't have access to Alpha design features, the MIPS architecture has been rather well documented as part of various academic papers and courses and would make an excellent starting point for a design.

    After more than a decade of working on CPUs, and not held back by x86 and needing to boot into DOS, I would expect things to be going very nicely indeed. The system seems to have a lot of the features of Intel's Knights Landing MIC module, except that the ShenWei seems to have got there first.

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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Quote Originally Posted by DanceswithUnix View Post
    ... Even if they didn't have access to Alpha design features, the MIPS architecture has been rather well documented as part of various academic papers and courses and would make an excellent starting point for a design. ...
    It seems a Chinese project did exactly that, starting in 2002: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loongson - however it appears that a small number of MIPS instructions are patented, so they eventually bought a MIPS license so they could produce fully MIPS-compatible processors.

    EDIT: just as a bit more food for thought - many of the brightest Chinese engineering students study overseas, and many of them return to China once they've graduated. So they've got both volume and quality. A small number of high-class graduates heading up large teams of engineers? Yeah, that's a pretty potent mix.

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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Quote Originally Posted by scaryjim View Post

    EDIT: just as a bit more food for thought - many of the brightest Chinese engineering students study overseas, and many of them return to China once they've graduated. So they've got both volume and quality. A small number of high-class graduates heading up large teams of engineers? Yeah, that's a pretty potent mix.
    I agree with this. Just ask anyone who lives near a Univeristy town, there is a disproportionately high ratio of Chinese and other east asian nationals. Or at least it certainly appears that way. I've alzo noticed that the fields they study are more practical. Lots of engineer, computing, law and business. Not very much by way the arts. These are just my observations of course.

    (note: I dont mind! They pay a good chunk more for the same education and sort of subsidise UK students)

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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Quote Originally Posted by scaryjim View Post

    CERTAINLY keep such potentially slanderous comments off Hexus - the last thing this site needs is probing by a foreign government...
    I'm sure if Hexus have a problem with the post they can delete it, you only have to Google search to see what the Chinese state is up to with it's attempted cyber attacks and the hacking of servers belonging to Western Tech & defence companies.

    Did they definitively do that to build this CPU?, I certainly can't prove it, but copying Western designs is certainly from where their first attempts came from.

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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Quote Originally Posted by Jowsey View Post
    ... Just ask anyone who lives near a Univeristy town, there is a disproportionately high ratio of Chinese and other east asian nationals. Or at least it certainly appears that way. I've alzo noticed that the fields they study are more practical. Lots of engineer, computing, law and business. Not very much by way the arts. These are just my observations of course. ...
    Don't think you're far off the mark, tbh. Certainly at last year's Business graduations there were classes that were 90%+ Chinese. Wouldn't be at all surprised if the same was true of Engineering and Computer Science.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bagpuss View Post
    ... copying Western designs is certainly from where their first attempts came from.
    I don't think anyone would deny that they used Western designs as a starting point for their own development. That's a long way from claiming they hacked servers and committed IP theft.

    Anyway, my comment about keeping that stuff off Hexus isn't specifically about this thread - as a moderator I don't want to have to trawl through Hexus on a regular basis checking that no-one's slandered anyone! Besides, it's generally good practice not to slander people online - it tends not to go down well

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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Quote Originally Posted by scaryjim View Post

    Anyway, my comment about keeping that stuff off Hexus isn't specifically about this thread - as a moderator I don't want to have to trawl through Hexus on a regular basis checking that no-one's slandered anyone! Besides, it's generally good practice not to slander people online - it tends not to go down well
    I've removed the post...someone quoted it though so I don't know whether you want to remove that as well.

    I stand by what I said, but I don't want to cause any potential problems for this site..

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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Quote Originally Posted by scaryjim View Post
    I don't think anyone would deny that they used Western designs as a starting point for their own development. That's a long way from claiming they hacked servers and committed IP theft.

    Anyway, my comment about keeping that stuff off Hexus isn't specifically about this thread - as a moderator I don't want to have to trawl through Hexus on a regular basis checking that no-one's slandered anyone! Besides, it's generally good practice not to slander people online - it tends not to go down well
    Oh c'mon, China is the land of knock-offs. If they feel aggrieved at such comments, maybe they should acknowledge other peoples IP instead of stealing it? Until that happens I would expect such comments to continue. It's not slander if it's true....and while there is no proof in *this instance* of theft, I bet the chances are high that it's merely a case of how many infringements are there when looking closely.

    Go to a market in China or HK and you'll see what the Chinese think of copyright laws....everything from Armani to Apple and everything in-between, all blatantly copied.......there is a reason people jest about it..........
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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Quote Originally Posted by shaithis View Post
    ... Go to a market in China or HK and you'll see what the Chinese think of copyright laws....everything from Armani to Apple and everything in-between, all blatantly copied.......there is a reason people jest about it..........
    *shrug* there are lines, and in my opinion Bagpuss' comment was treading very very close to a problematic one. There are undoubtedly all sorts of areas where the Chinese "borrow" from western designs. Enforcement of international trademarks and copyrights is a tricky issue of course - I think there's been at least one example of a company forgetting to renew an international trademark recently, which meant they couldn't enforce it. And there's the question of where you try to enforce your trademarks, and wherther your trademark is even registered for the territory in which it's being copied. It's a complex area (as we're also discussing in the Sky thread at the minute).

    That said, there's a HUGE difference between saying that many Chinese companies copy western trademarks, and directly accusing the Chinese government of illicitly accessing the computing systems of a western corporation and stealing their commercially-sensitive data. No-one's arguing about the general climate in China. I'm just saying let's not make specific accusations that we can't back up, ey?

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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Well I was more taken aback by how dismissive the comment was than thinking it was libel. There is some big engineering going on here.

    Quote Originally Posted by scaryjim View Post
    It seems a Chinese project did exactly that, starting in 2002: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loongson - however it appears that a small number of MIPS instructions are patented, so they eventually bought a MIPS license so they could produce fully MIPS-compatible processors.
    Sort of, that is a MIPS compatible CPU in its instruction set, but who knows what it looks like on the inside.

    MIPS makes sense though, it is a more open design that people can get a license for with good 64 bit heritage which ARM is only starting to dip their toe into such waters.

    The rumours of reverse engineering Alpha were quite plentiful and believable, some of that tech could well have ended up in this MIPS design, but the Alpha instruction set is owned by Intel who clearly wanted the technology which embarrassed them for so many years to just go away so there didn't seem to be any chance of getting a license to use that.

    Quote Originally Posted by scaryjim View Post
    I don't think anyone would deny that they used Western designs as a starting point for their own development.
    Well that's how Intel started isn't it?

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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    This is interesting, would be nice to see Chinese GPUs and CPUs in the future and to see what they can actually achieve =)

    It could really be good news as well, at least for maybe us the consumers in the future.

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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    If it can run games well at 4k I'll consider getting one.
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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    All that processing power and it still wouldn't manage a decent FPS in Minecraft lol...

    But seriously, that is massively impressive. Computing power of that magnitude will be the way medical and scientific research makes advancements in leaps and bounds....
    Last edited by Vorlon99; 21-06-2016 at 04:01 PM. Reason: Typo's
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    Re: World's fastest supercomputer is the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight

    Ok the amount of power that thing needs is insane 15,000 kW lets put that into perspective here. That is 15 grocery stores about 80K sqft or 200 amp panel loaded to 80% at 240v typical home(sorry I am american.) That would put you at 66kva now you typically say kVA is kW. so 15,000 kW divided by 66 thats 227 homes for one computer.

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