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Nasa Challenges Coders to Speed ­p Its Supercomputer


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NASA's Pleiades supercomputer needs some updating.

The U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is offering thousands of dollars in cash prizes to programmers who can boost the performance of its Pleiades supercomputer in the execution of computational fluid dynamics.

Credit: Dominic Hart/NASA

The U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has issued a challenge to programmers to boost the performance of its Pleiades supercomputer in the execution of computational fluid dynamics, offering thousands of dollars in cash prizes.

NASA's Michael Hetle says it currently takes days or weeks for Pleiades to yield an output.

The two-fold challenge involves the crowdsourcing of big-picture, strategic concepts to re-envision and improve the FUN3D code, and to conceive of tactical revisions to accelerate Pleiades' efficiency. FUN3D uses the Fortran programming language, which Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering professor Allen Downey says is uniquely suited to function with algebraic algorithms that apply to physical motion.

NASA says the competition is designed to help it analyze FUND3D's performance bottlenecks and identify possible alterations that might trim overall computing time.

Downey notes the contest offers NASA a cost-effective way to tackle a major problem.

From The New York Times
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