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SC08 keynoter Michael Dell thanks Cornell for supercomputing partnership

Contact: Paul Redfern
Cell: (607) 227-1865

November 28, 2008

Ten years ago, directors from Cornell University's supercomputing center travelled to Austin, Texas for a meeting with senior Dell executives. Their mission was to convince Dell to make the move from a PC to a server company. "The time was right," recalls Dr. David Lifka, director of the Cornell Center for Advanced Computing. "With standards-based computing emerging, we suggested what better way to tell the world that you're serious about servers than to deploy a supercomputer."

Dell liked the idea and, soon after, in collaboration with Cornell, designed and deployed the company's first supercomputer at the University’s Ithaca, New York campus. The 256-processor Pentium 3 system was Dell's first entrée onto the “TOP500," a listing of the world’s most powerful supercomputers.

Last week, Cornell travelled to Austin once again, this time to join 10,000 other supercomputing and scientific researchers at the Austin Convention Center for SC08, the annual international conference on high performance computing, networking, storage and analysis. During the conference keynote, Michael Dell introduced Dr. Lifka and thanked Cornell, citing the University's impact on Dell's decision to enter the high performance computing market and the value of its ongoing partnership. “Dr. Lifka and his team were at the forefront of this whole cluster trend almost a decade ago, and now today 429 of the top 500 supercomputers are based on the X86 microprocessor architecture,” added Dell.

The Cornell Center for Advanced Computing is a leader in high-performance computing system, application, and data solutions that enable research success. CAC receives funding from Cornell and its supporters, including the National Science Foundation, DOD, the USDA, and members of its Corporate Program.