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The U.S. says it will have the world's fastest supercomputer ready in just two years
.
美国表示将在两年内建成世界上最快的超级计算机。



The U.S. Department of Energy says it has signed a contract with Cray Inc. and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) to build a machine called Frontier, capable of computing at 1.5 exaflops -- a level 50 times faster than current supercomputers.

美国能源部说,它已经与克雷公司和AMD公司签署了一份合同,将建造一台名为“前沿”(Frontier)的计算机,每秒浮点运算可达150亿亿次,是目前超级计算机运算速度的50倍。

The department says its endeavor, which entails a $600 million investment for the development of technology and systems, will help yield new advances in artificial intelligence, machine learning, and more.

该部门表示,这个项目需要6亿美元的投资,用于技术和系统的开发,完成后将有助于在人工智能、机器学习等领域取得新的进展。



This scale of computing power is useful for complex modeling that could help predict natural disasters, climate change, even deliver complex medical diagnoses.

这种计算能力的规模对于复杂的建模非常有用,可以帮助预测自然灾害、气候变化,甚至提供复杂的医疗诊断。

While Frontier may be the world's fastest supercomptuer once its built, China is also in the process of developing its own competitor capable of operating at an exascale, which it plans to have ready a year earlier than Frontier.

虽然“前沿”建成后可能是世界上速度最快的超级计算机,但中国也在开发自己的运算能力在百亿亿次级别的超算,该项目的计划略早于”前沿”一年。

China also outpaces the U.S. in number of supercomputers, with with 227 of the world's fastest computers compared to America's 109 according to The Verge.

The Verge的数据显示,中国超级计算机的数量也超过了美国,全球速度最快的计算机中有227台是中国的,而美国只有109台。

As the project to build Frontier gets underway, the U.S. and Intel are also in the midst of developing another supercomputer called Aurora that will be capable of operating at an exascale.

随着“前沿”项目的启动,美国和英特尔也在开发另一种超级计算机“极光”,这种计算机的运算能力将达到百亿亿次。



That machine is slated to be finished in 2021 and is being developed in Argonne National Laboratory in Chicago. Both supercomputers will follow up a the previous record-setting computer, Summit, which was released by the U.S. Department of Energy last year.

这台机器预计将于2021年完工,目前正在芝加哥的阿尔贡国家实验室进行研发。这两款超级计算机都将延续美国能源部去年发布的“顶峰”电脑创下的纪录。

Outside of traditional computing, scientists and physicists have been attempting to pioneer new fronts that they hope will pave the way for advances in the future -- to do this, researchers have turned to the world of quantum physics.

除了传统的计算之外,科学家和物理学家一直试图开拓新的领域,他们希望这将为未来的进步铺平道路——为此,研究人员转向量子物理学的世界。

Quantum computing as it's called uses a rule of quantum physics called 'superposition' which means that a particle can be in two states at once.

量子计算,正如它的名字,使用了量子物理学的一个规则,称为“叠加”,这意味着一个粒子可以同时处于两种状态。

This means, instead of a traditional binary bit, which cane either be a one or a zero, a quantum bit, or qubit, could be both a one and a zero, therefore exponentially widening the number of calculations capable per second.

这意味着,与传统的二进制位(二进制位可以是1或0)不同,量子位可以是1和0,因此每秒可以进行的计算量成倍增加。



A good analogy is that of a coin spinning in the air. It cannot be said to be either a 'heads' or 'tails' until it lands.

一个很好的类比是硬币在空中旋转。在它落地之前,不能说它是“正面”或“反面”。

The heart of modern computing is binary code, which has served computers for decades.

现代计算的核心是二进制代码,它已经为计算机服务了几十年。

While a classical computer has 'bits' made up of zeros and ones, a quantum computer has 'qubits' which can take on the value of zero or one, or even both simultaneously.

经典计算机的“位”由0和1组成,而量子计算机的“量子位”可以取0或1的值,甚至同时取0和1的值。

One of the major stumbling blocks for the development of quantum computers has been demonstrating they can beat classical computers.

量子计算机发展的主要障碍之一是证明它们可以打败经典计算机。

Google, IBM, and Intel are among companies competing to achieve this.

谷歌、IBM和英特尔等公司都在竞相实现这一目标。