Dubai: IBM and Intel on Wednesday announced they are opening a high performance computing centre at IBM's Dubai Internet City (DIC) building.
High performance computing (HPC) is the use of a number of computers to run "extremely performance intensive applications". The machines can reduce the amount of time it takes to get results from months and weeks to days and even hours.
"The idea is to address the needs of local companies who want to test out their applications, tune them, see how the work in an HPC cluster," said Intel Manager Tom Donnelly.
The joint venture plans to target independent software vendors in the region.
"It's about trying to address the broader HPC needs," Donnelly said. "Historically, in this region we've always looked at the oil and gas industry. That's still extremely important, but you also have financial services, digital media, and a growing academic community with an interest in high performance computing."
Until recently, Dubai has had almost no research and development. Donnelly said this could change that.
"It's a kick-start," he said. "It's a natural development of the market. It's going to happen here in the next couple of years and we both want to be movers who take advantage of it."
Christopher Cooper, a division leader for industrial systems, said that demand for HPC centres has been high.
IBM Manager Catalin Morosanu said the system was powered up on Wednesday.
The centre is one of four joint IBM/Intel HPC centres outside of the US and will offer up to 7 to 8 teraflops of processing powers, which is about 1,000 times the processing power of many of today's fastest PCs.