Saturday, August 30, 2003

They cut in line!

There's new news to report on the Powermac G5 front. While Apple Stores across the country are currently showing off the single-processor models (I took a spin on a 1.8 GHz model at the Apple Store Chicago this morning), shipping times for the top of the line Dual 2 GHz model have crept into September.

The delays were initially - and still partially - attributed to Apple's desire to fill education orders before the start of the school year. Now Think Secret reveals another reason (and this one's even more interesting than the education one!).

Apparently Apple has put a Powermac order from Virginia Tech ahead of even day one preorders. Exactly how many computers do you have to order to cut ahead of the earliest of the early adopters? The answer is 1100.

The University is taking 1100 Dual-Processor Powermacs and using them to hopefully create one of the world's five fastest supercomputers. That's 2200 PowerPC 970s. And each machine is reported to be carrying 4 to 8 GB of RAM, putting the cluster's total RAM somewhere between 4.4 and 8.8 TB. The cluster should deliver about 10 Teraflops of performance (translation: it should be very powerful).

All you folks who ordered the Dual-Processor Powermacs on day one will just have to wait a few more weeks (unfortunately I can't feel that sorry for someone who's getting a Dual 2 GHz G5). Just remember that your order's been bumped back for a good cause. Virigina Tech is on a deadline to get the cluster up and running in time to be ranked in this year's Top 500 Supercomputer list. An all-G5 cluster near the top would sure look good for Apple.

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