Sometimes it turns out that bigger isn’t better, especially when it comes to compute clusters. “Anything that gives more power in a smaller footprint is good,” said Jeffrey Skolnick of his most recent high-performance computing purchase: an IBM BladeCenter cluster. Skolnick’s previous HPC toy, a 4,000-processor Dell cluster that was christened in 2002 with much fanfare — and a few sound bites from CEO Michael Dell — won’t be thrown in the dumpster just yet, but will be “augmented” by the IBM system, Skolnick said.

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