IBM has announced new workload-optimized POWER7 systems, including a performance boost to the Power 750 – the same server used in Watson, the Jeopardy! winner.
New are the 16-core, single-wide IBM BladeCenter PS703 and 32-core, double-wide IBM BladeCenter PS704 blade servers, which give clients an alternative to sprawling racks.
The enhanced IBM Power 750 Express, the same system that powers Watson, has been upgraded with several options, including a faster POWER7 processor that offers more than three times the performance of comparable 32-core servers, such as Oracle's SPARC T3-2 server, and more than twice the performance of HP's Integrity BL890c i2.
"We are running billions of intense calculations based on Einstein's theory of relativity on the POWER7 blades," said Gaurav Khanna, professor of physics at UMass-Dartmouth. "Running POWER7, I'm able to get results as much as eight times faster than running the same calculations on an Intel Xeon processor. Calculations that used to take a month to run are now finished in less than a week. This means that I can do eight times more science in the same timeframe than I could do before."
So yes, it can play… Jeopardy!