PlayStation Craze Hits Life Sciences

Sony gave air max 270 femme a huge boost to life sciences and bioinformatics start-ups when it encouraged developers to tinker with its popular PlayStation 3 video game console. The PS3’s processor, which Sony co-designed with IBM and Toshiba, runs at a formidable 3.2 GHz; its architecture permits several PS3s to be linked together in so-called clusters. Those air max 270 femme clusters can produce the kind of awesome computer power that life sciences and bioinformatics companies need to model cell behavior or other complex chemical reactions. This week, Sony’s partner, Loveland, CO-based Terra Soft Solutions, will demonstrate its open source version of Linux, called Yellow Dog, on PS3 at the Embedded Systems Conference in San Jose, CA.

Last fall, the Web site revealed that Sony and Terra Soft went public with a “supercomputer based on a cluster of Cell CPUs… the same kind used in Sony’s forthcoming PlayStation 3 games console.” The air max 270 femme cluster ran on Yellow Dog. “Key applications for the supercomputer will be in the life sciences and bioinformatics sectors,” the article added.

A PS3 cluster running Yellow Dog could place Terra Soft and any companies that adopt its platform squarely in the center of a desktop drug discovery revolution. Such a revolution could provide entrée to legions of bioinformatics start-ups that suddenly gain access to low-cost supercomputing power. No doubt Terra Soft sees it that way. As Linux blogger Paul Murphy noted in a post appearing on ZDNet, “Terra Soft isn’t so much in the Yellow Dog business as it is in the supercomputing and life sciences software businesses.”

Terra Soft already sells a PS3 cluster rated at one teraflop. The unit’s $20,000 price tag makes it easily affordable to even the air max 270 femme most fledgling bioinformatics start-ups. The next steps, as Glen Otero, director of life sciences research at Terra Soft, explained in the article, are to develop “a suite of open-source life science applications” using the PS3 processor and then to nurture a global community of developers who can put them to good use.

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