IBM and several fellow OpenPOWER Foundation members today revealed new technologies, collaborations and developer resources for big data analytics and big data applications. New tools include; Nvidia GPU support for IBM Watson, Xilinx FPGA accelerators support for the data centre and network function virtualisation, current IBM applications for Internet of Things, Spark, Big Data and Cognitive Era applications ported to take advantage of the POWER architecture with accelerators and developments with NEC, and Mellanox.
"There is a need for systems that provide greater speed to insight -- for data and analytics workloads to help businesses and organization make sense of the data, to outthink competitors as we usher in a new era of Cognitive Computing," said Brad McCredie, IBM Fellow and OpenPOWER Foundation President. "IBM and our fellow OpenPOWER members are on the forefront driving the changes necessary for innovation at all levels of the technology stack, including the development of the industry's first open, high-speed interconnects between processors and accelerators."
New products, collaborations and further investments in accelerator-based solutions on top of the POWER processor architecture include:
The Incorporation of NVIDIA Tesla K80 GPUs into Watson's POWER-based architecture, which IBM claims accelerates Watson's Retrieve and Rank API capabilities to 1.7x of its normal speed and the GPU acceleration increases Watson's processing power to 10x its prior performance.
Xilinx and IBM will collaborate to jointly develop data centre and network function virtualisation (NFV) solutions that bring together the systems, software, and management components around Xilinx FPGA accelerators. The solutions focus on emerging workloads including high performance computing, cognitive computing, machine learning, genomics and big data analytics.
A new switch from Mellanox, the Switch-IB 2, which claims to be the world's first smart network switch, capable of delivering an estimated 10x system performance improvement.
NEC ExpEther Technology for POWER architecture-based systems, along with plans to leverage IBM's innovative Coherent Accelerator Processor Interface (CAPI) technology for accelerated computing.
Two OpenPOWER members, E4 Computer Engineering and Penguin Computing, revealed new systems based on the OpenPOWER design concept incorporating IBM POWER8 and NVIDIA Tesla GPU accelerators.
Additionally IBM has developed new test-bed systems for developers to create, port and optimise applications. The global network of new physical centres and cloud-based services for no-charge access to accelerated POWER-based infrastructure will include:
NVIDIA and IBM working together to accelerate SuperVessel, a global cloud-based OpenPOWER ecosystem resource launched in June. SuperVessel now provides GPU-accelerated computing as-a-service capabilities, giving users access to high-performance NVIDIA Tesla GPUs to enable Caffe, Torch and Theano deep-learning frameworks to instantaneously launch from the SuperVessel cloud.
Xilinx and IBM have developed a new FPGA accelerator service on SuperVessel that makes coherent reconfigurable accelerators available to developers via the cloud. By enabling high-level language programming like C, C++ and OpenCL, Xilinx and IBM are dramatically expanding how users can leverage FPGAs in the cloud for innovation on applications like machine learning, big data analytics and HPC.
Most of the tools will be a wheeled out over the next few months to find out more consult the OpenPOWER website.