SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

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SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby sgifanatic » Thu Jul 29, 2010 3:46 pm

This is a blog entry by CEO Mark Barrenchea from back in August of '09. I did a search and couldn't find a previous post discussing it on the board, so I thought I'd bring it up.

Here's the link:

http://rackable.typepad.com/mark_barren ... uting.html

It appears that SGI will be re-emphasising graphics and visual computing. However, the strategy elucidated in the blog post leaves me a bit confused. If SGI is working with all three GPU vendors (Intel, NVIDIA and ATI), that would mean that they will support all or most of them as a generic GPU, no different to what you will get from any other vendor. In SGI's prime they were differentiating themselves with their graphics capabilities, not adopting run-of-the-mill generic technology.

If Visual Computing is so important, why is SGI not investing in developing an edge in this area? And by this I don't necessarily mean developing their own GPU - too late for that - but at least integrating GPUs in a unique way and layering them with SW or firmware that make them stand out from the crowd.
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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby SAQ » Thu Jul 29, 2010 4:53 pm

sgifanatic wrote:If Visual Computing is so important, why is SGI not investing in developing an edge in this area? And by this I don't necessarily mean developing their own GPU - too late for that - but at least integrating GPUs in a unique way and layering them with SW or firmware that make them stand out from the crowd.


SGI's been foundering around with this for a while - remember when they had the new BOXX-derived workstations that half of the sales staff didn't know about? Or the "Visual Area Networking" that was never really explained?

If they are going to do something "edgy" then there's no need to lock yourself into a specific vendor, especially at this stage in the game. SGI isn't big enough to have any of them listen if they ask for something specially, and the GPUs are similar enough to where it could be possible to do something fancy with a level of abstraction that allows for you to substitute whatever does X better at this time. Not sure why Intel is in that list, since AFAIK they aren't doing anything high-end.
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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby skywriter » Thu Jul 29, 2010 4:59 pm

his neck sure god fat lately. virtually guaranteeing he'll bite off more than he can chew (again).

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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby hamei » Fri Jul 30, 2010 3:31 am

sgifanatic wrote:If Visual Computing is so important, why is SGI not investing in developing an edge in this area? And by this I don't necessarily mean developing their own GPU - too late for that - but at least integrating GPUs in a unique way and layering them with SW or firmware that make them stand out from the crowd.

You don't understand ! The United States is run by Wall Street now. This is a post-industrial society : we don't need no steenkin' products ! We can just talk our asses off and the stock prices will rise then we .. well, they can cash out with excellent profits. P.T.Barnum did not die a pauper because, as you know, "no one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public."

It's all a crock of shit. I keep wondering when (if ?) the American public will catch on.

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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby sgifanatic » Fri Jul 30, 2010 7:18 am

Unfortunately, I cannot disagree with you. Innovation is taking a back seat. Enrollment in CS programmes throughout the US is declining. It pains me, but there you have it.
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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby skywriter » Fri Jul 30, 2010 2:55 pm

I wonder if hamei holds any another country in the high esteem he seems to reserve for the US and China. Of course, they're the most advanced countries these days. Why pick on the young and inexperienced, or the old and superannuated?
Last edited by skywriter on Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby skywriter » Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:21 pm

sgifanatic wrote:If Visual Computing is so important, why is SGI not investing in developing an edge in this area? And by this I don't necessarily mean developing their own GPU - too late for that - but at least integrating GPUs in a unique way and layering them with SW or firmware that make them stand out from the crowd.


Because it's bull. What did rack able do when they bought sgi? Why they assigned a VP of visualization, and then fired him, and dissolved the BU a quarter later. Rackable has no interest in graphics. Nobody does in the high end. It's a commodity technology with no alignment with rackables core competencies.
eMGee wrote: So far, I think SGI is better off in the hands of Rackable than Sun is in the hands of Oracle..

What supporting evidence do you have for that? Oracle has a ton of cash to support dicking around with Sun, and it's technology. Rackables acquisition of sgi, was the blind leading the blind, or the broke buying the broke. They don't have time, or cash to fiddle around. One too many missteps and it's curtains.
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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby hamei » Fri Jul 30, 2010 5:47 pm

skywriter wrote:I wonder if hamei holds any another country in the high esteem he seems to reserve for the US and China.

Sky, we know better. Or you and I do, anyhow. Young people in the US actually seem to believe the ponzi scheme garbage that the media has been peddling for the past thrirty years. Wake up, people ! It's a con job and you are the marks ! Why is it that every time the circus comes to town you fall for these same stupid stories ? Then they leave with your cash while you go back to digging rutabagas and sleeping with the pigs. Wake up, would you please ?

Of course, they're the most advanced countries these days.

China ? Advanced ? You've got to be joking. When they discover the p-trap or learn to use a toilet I'll reconsider.

Why pick on the young and inexperienced, or the old and superannuated?

'cuz them's the two places I know :) China is what it is, a huge medieval village. That's fine, it's their country and if they want to be stupid that's their privilege. But the US ... you morons. Millions of people worked hard and sacrificed to create a reasonably decent society, which you fools have thrown away in the name of the Bottom Line. The "Business Leaders" of the United States are scum and shit, every one of them. Thieves, people, thieves. This cult of business is every bit as ridiculous as the fundamentalist loonies who transport to Hale-Bopp but y'all fall all over yourselves worshipping it. The op's reference is typical of a much deeper problem :The article is a lie. Obviously a lie, pure horseshit. But the press will report it as if it were God's Own Word and people in Minnesota will buy stocks for their retirement based on this crap and it permeates every aspect of life in the US today. It's a disease, people. Business as religion is a disease. Cancers kill.

The United States desperately needs an honest, intelligent press.
Last edited by hamei on Fri Jul 30, 2010 6:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby skywriter » Fri Jul 30, 2010 5:57 pm

Oh, but hamei, it all reads as so much hyperbole. Young impressionable minds with no real developed critical thinking skills will eat it up based in the emotional component without the benefit of so much as a well reasoned argument. Even in this thread youngsters are claiming to know better upon with only an "i told you so" to support their arguments. See, what bad habits they're learning?
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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby hamei » Fri Jul 30, 2010 6:07 pm

skywriter wrote:Young impressionable minds with no real developed critical thinking skills will eat it up based in the emotional component without the benefit of so much as a well reasoned argument.

Exactly. I guess we do need wars, otherwise young people really do believe all this la-di-da crap. Getting your ass shot off because of leadership stupidity could actually be an incentive to develop the brain cells. Time to bring back the draft !

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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby josehill » Fri Jul 30, 2010 6:08 pm

hamei wrote:Then they leave with your cash while you go back to digging rutabagas and sleeping with the pigs. Wake up, would you please ?

Maybe we should just set up a "Digging Rutabagas" thread about the absolute moral decay that is apparently everywhere we turn, mark it as a "Sticky" topic, and refer to it anytime that anyone mentions anything about companies, societies, people, open source, breathing, farting, etc. :roll:

Either that, or we can all just yell "Rutabaga!" in the hopes of getting back on topic.

It'd be like our own version of Godwin's Law! ;)

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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby skywriter » Fri Jul 30, 2010 6:09 pm

hamei wrote:
skywriter wrote:Young impressionable minds with no real developed critical thinking skills will eat it up based in the emotional component without the benefit of so much as a well reasoned argument.

Exactly. I guess we do need wars, otherwise young people really do believe all this la-di-da crap.


Or a well reasoned argument. :)
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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby hamei » Fri Jul 30, 2010 6:30 pm

skywriter wrote:Or a well reasoned argument. :)

Not allowed. A discussion of critical thinking is not allowed. We are supposed to wallow in the crap that spews from these peoples' mouths without ever mentioning that it's all nonsense. Sky, let us allow the god Consumer into our lives ! He will Hold us and Cuddle us and make all things Right with the world ! Trust Him, He Won't Come in Your Mouth !

But Beware, if we stray from the path of Worship, we'll be Off-Topic in our Adoration of all things SGI. Then we will go to Capitalist Hell for leaving our post as Good Little Consumers :shock:

Jose, Godwin is not god. He can take his stupid so-called Law and jam it up his ass. If you want the US to be a northern version of Mexico, fine. You can have it. Ignore the Depression, ignore what got us there, ignore anyone pointing out that the path SGI trod is the exact same path the United States is walking, pretend it's all fine and dandy because you yourself are comfy as a nephew of the Duke. Your country is swirling the toilet bowl but you don't want to hear it. That way you can say in another year "but no one told us ! No one could ever imagine this would happen !" Okay, you gottit. I'll shut up. No problem. You people deserve exactly what you get. Oh. It has nothing to do with morals, by the way. It's called intelligence, something the ruling classes of the US sorely lack.

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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby josehill » Fri Jul 30, 2010 7:01 pm

hamei wrote:Your country is swirling the toilet bowl but you don't want to hear it. That way you can say in another year "but no one told us ! No one could ever imagine this would happen !" Okay, you gottit. I'll shut up. No problem.

I think that you've misread me. I'm as concerned about innovation, sustainability, productivity, and real results vs. sleight-of-hand tricks, etc. as anyone is, particularly since I'm trying my damnedest to foster all of those things as an entrepreneur.

That's not the point, however. This is the SGI Discussion forum. Not every thread about SGI announcements or remarks made by SGI execs needs to become another lecture about the decline of business/political culture or the society at large. If that's the default response, why should people even bother starting a thread in the first place?

If you want to discuss visual computing, whatever the heck that might be, this is the thread. If you want to discuss the decline of the culture, why not start a new thread in the "Everything Else" forum?

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Re: SGI CEO talks about Visual Computing and GPUs

Unread postby skywriter » Sat Jul 31, 2010 4:39 am

I disagree, this topic is very much a business topic, and little to do with technology. unlike a technological discussion where you can discuss it in a literal vacuum, a business discussion requires a great deal of context; technology, business and politics. While easing up on the rabble rousing might make it all a more palatable fare, a CEO's statement will always need a business/political component to make sense of it.

This one In particular, needs to be made in consideration of all his statements, and the companies actions since the merger. Taking this statement out of context will only lead to a discussion filled with folly and flotsam otherwise (again). There are only a few people on this board with enough experience to do this; c'est la vie.
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