Sunday, February 10, 2008

A site to behold

Ladies and Gentlemen meet MareNostrum a supercomputer residing in an antiquated European chapel. This computing behemoth is not for spiritual contemplation (all though that is a possibility) rather it is poised to revolutionize the oil industry. With its increased processing capabilities it will allow geologist to visualize subterranean structures, which were previously locked away by millions of gallons of seawater.

Current modeling techniques are pretty good at uncovering what lies beneath the bedrock when it’s accessible from the surface; however it becomes much more complex when you have to do the same thing underwater. This is because they have to decipher signals sent back as echoes to create a model, similar to how bats see. However these echoes refract when underwater, to get an accurate image they have to keep track of these refractions as well.

This is not possible with the current state of the art that’s why they turned to supercomputers. Which is capable of creating a model, using collected data, in 20 days. If your desktop computer were asked to do the same thing it would take well over a century!

On a more emotional level I am taken by the stark contrast between new and old. As always I want to know your thoughts.

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