IBM have been on the forefront of Big Data research for the last few years. Last year Watson beat 2 human competitors in a game of Jeopardy by making links between data and reasoning what the correct answer would be in fractions of a second. Now the hardware scientists are at it again.
Mira, the 3rd largest super computer in the world, is gearing up to simulate the first 13 billion years of our universe from the very start of the big bang. Physicists from the Argonne National Laboratory will use the cluster to simulate the trillions of interactions between particles, hopefully creating giant masses of planets, stars and galaxies. The simulation will hopefully give scientists an understanding of how these elemental interactions create a time lapse of expanding bodies in the universe.
To give a sense of the power of IBM’s Mira, the whole task is scheduled to complete in just 2 weeks. With the advances in hardware, distributed computing and CPU design, engineers can cram more cores on a single chip and if Moore’s Law holds then clusters by the end of the decade will be 1000 times more powerful than Mira.