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Information Technology: What Is Parallella?

August 16, 2013 IADT General, Information Technology 0 Comments

Discover The Latest In SupercomputersParallella may just be the technology that changes our world – and you need to know about it.

Dubbed a “supercomputer for everyone,” Parallella was originally proposed on Kickstarter by Adapteva. The company’s technology will be available as an open source and will be incredibly affordable – only $99 for a 16-core Epiphany Multicore Accelerator and $199 for a 64-core. Both Multicore Accelerators house a 1GHz RISC processor and are linked within a single share memory architecture.

On their Kickstarter page, Adapteva writes: “we see a critical need for a truly open, high-performance computing platform that will close the knowledge gap in parallel programming. The goal of the Parallella project is to democratize access to parallel computing.”

The Parallella computer is 3.4” by 2.1”. It includes many major components, such as:

  • Zynq-7010 Dual-core ARM A9 CPU
  • 1GB RAM
  • MicroSD Card
  • Two USB 2.0
  • Two general purpose expansion connectors
  • Ethernet 10/100/1000
  • HDMI connection

The computer also ships with Ubuntu OS and free open source Ephiphany development tools, including C compiler, multicore debugger, eclipse IDE, OpenCL SDK/compiler and run time libraries.

Parallella is not recommended for non-programmers or non-Linux users at this point in time, according to Technology reviewer Alvaris Falcon of HongKiat.com. However, as an Information Technology student, this technology may be of interest to you as it is a major development that may permanently change computer processing and available technology.

Jamie Rigg of Engadget.com reports, “Parallel computing is normally reserved for supercomputers way out of the reach of average users – at least at the moment, anyway. Adapteva wants to challenge that with its Parallella project, designed to bring mouth-watering power to a board similar in size to the Raspberry Pi.” The project was successfully backed on Kickstarter on October 27, 2012. The company recently posted an update, announcing that all the hardware sources for the first version of the Parallella board have been published on Github and that the first beta version of their board will go out to backers soon.

Interested in the Parallella project? Though you cannot contribute to the Kickstarter project anymore, you can follow production progress and developments on Facebook. You may also consider talking to your Information Technology program advisor for more information on the latest innovations in IT.

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