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technology

Cerebras’ wafer-size chip is 10,000 times faster than a GPU | VentureBeat

https://venturebeat.com/2020/11/17/cerebras-wafer-size-chip-is-10000-times-faster-than-a-gpu/amp/

Cerebras is finally hitting the racks in some locations and doing benchmarks to see how well it performs. And as compared to custom made/bespoke computer clusters with a mix of CPU/GPU, it’s performing very well. One benchmark has shown it is a significant improvement over the #82 ranked supercomputer (200x faster on certain benchmarks) and performs those calculations at a reduced power consumption 20KW versus 450KW (for #82 ranked super computer). So as a first time out, it seems like some of the promises and hand-waving made by the company are being proved out. The question still remains as Venture Beat points out, is how applicable Cerebras CS-1 is to a range of compute problems. The value of any of these multi-million dollar specialty compute machines is only as good as the range of problems you can solve with them. Thinking back to the 1970s, Control Data Corporation spent a fortune optimizing for vector math with their first vector-based super computer. But that was all for naught when scalar type calculations were mixed in. Seymour Cray saw this and addressed it with the Cray-1 by allowing a performant mix of scalar, with much better performance vector calculations. So having a good enough performance on scalar, was so far ahead of the CDC vector-optimized that people gravitated to the Cray-1 instead. We’ll see how closely the Cerebras CS-1 hews to this pattern over the next year or so as people figure out what it is good at and whether or not it’s good value for the money.

By carpetbomberz

Technology news & commentary all-in-one!

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