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If you do not compute, you do not compete. In fact, you will not exist. 

Hybrid cloud architecture allows smaller organizations to leverage high-performance computing (HPC). Leading companies across all industries and government agencies are getting a head start on their competitors. If you're not looking at HPC, you should be. Here's what you need to know right now. 

Supercomputers and high-performance computing in the exascale era

Since the earliest supercomputers were developed by Seymour Cray in the 70s, they have been impacting the world in major ways. 

Today, supercomputers are transitioning from solving problems at the petascale, meaning a quadrillion calculations a second, to the exascale, which means a quintillion calculations a second. In the coming exascale era, powerful supercomputers will take on massive, highly complex workloads (think AI, deep learning, sophisticated analytics, climate change and security) to provide mind-blowing insights with breathtaking scale, helping innovators address issues like sustainability, climate change and sequencing DNA.

Typically, supercomputers are used for capability computing, which means solving a very big problem, running one job that goes across a million processors. If you imagine all computing as a triangle, capability computing comprises the top 10 percent at the tip. Traditionally, supercomputers have been used to address "grand challenges" like quantum mechanics, weather forecasting, cryptanalysis, molecular modeling, space exploration, climate modeling and many other grand challenges.

High-performance computing (HPC) entails using marshaled or aggregated computing resources to deliver much higher performance and power to accomplish computationally-intensive tasks, leading to faster, deeper insights that give organizations a leg up on their competition. HPC can be used for the 80 percent computing that makes up most of the computing triangle under capability computing, known as capacity computing or throughput computing. Oil and gas, aerospace, and life sciences are examples of industries with organizations that have a million cores but will divide them into many chunks and let numerous workloads run simultaneously. From driving a car to checking the weather or playing golf, almost everything we do or interact with has been impacted and shaped by HPC in some way.

HPC has traditionally been available for use only by very large enterprises, organizations and governments with deep pockets who can afford $20M or more to get in the door. Today, HPC is mature and is no longer available only for the ivory tower or elite organizations. Hybrid cloud computing has advanced in scale, capability and access to support HPC for mid-size or smaller companies to use it in new applications, including financial analysis, forecasting, decision support, modeling, simulations, data mining and AI.

Cloud, especially hybrid cloud, has democratized HPC by making high-performance computing-as-a-service (HPCaaS) possible. HPCaaS leverages hybrid cloud strategies — HPC on-premises plus HPCaaS. HPCaaS performs like HPC systems and operates like the classic cloud, supporting a wide range of future processors and accelerator architectures, and can be scaled for any size need or data center location.

"Hybrid computing provides a unified interface to HPC resources worldwide, including all the major HPC cloud providers and supercomputer centers."

HPCaaS allows you to consume HPC resources on demand without upfront cost; you can buy high-performance computing-as-a-service (HPCaaS) with an OPEX model. For example, with HPE GreenLake, you can afford to be in the game. The HPC cloud enables even small companies and innovators to play as a little fish in a big pond. Whether you're Fortune 1 or Fortune 10,000, you can get access to the HPC resources and you can buy HPCaaS. 

HPC will be instrumental in your organization's future success, no matter what industry you are in. Some of your competitors are undoubtedly already figuring out how to use HPCaaS to gain competitive differentiation and national security (e.g., NSA). If you're not exploring it, you should be. If you want to compete and succeed in the future, it's crucial to figure out how you can leverage it as well. Simply put, if you're not leveraging HPC in the cloud or on the edge, you will not be in business very long, according to the Council of Competitiveness of the Office of Science & Technology Policy, White House.

And according to Allied Market Research, the HPC-as-a-service market could generate as much as $17 billion in revenue by 2026, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 13.3% from 2019 to 2026.

Why you need high-performance computing-as-a-service (HPCaaS)

HPE believes HPC will not be optional in the future for several compelling reasons.

  1. Digital transformation is driving new data-intensive workloads and real-time analytics operating at an unprecedented scale.
  2. You need high-performance capabilities to unlock the potential of your data and accelerate innovation and run your modeling, simulation, artificial intelligence (AI) and analytics decision-making efficiently.
  3. You can answer your most challenging questions with HPC for your crucial business and technical processes, removing the barriers to HPC and leveraging true HPC technology in a service model.

So if the need for HPC is becoming so clear, why isn't everyone using it, or at least preparing to use it? 

The biggest competition to HPC and HPCaaS: legacy and lethargy. As the saying goes, if you don't like change, you'll hate extinction.

Benefits of HPCaaS


Talking to the CTO or CFO


Talking to the Business Unit Executive


Talking to the VP of Research or CTO

Traditional HPC applications are adopting the cloud-friendly licensing modelHPCaaS will reach scale through greater supercomputer accessibility and public-private partnerships (PPPs)HPCaaS will eliminate periodic tech or infra refresh cycles and obsolescence
With flexible pricing models, an organization pays for the capacity used Changing technology is agile with varying workloads. 

Get started leveraging HPC

WWT and HPE GreenLake bring HPCaaS together into a single unified operational model, providing customers with the following benefits:

  • Consolidated infrastructure
  • Right-sized capacity
  • Instant deployment with onsite variable capacity
  • Software-defined operations and monitoring
  • Transparent and predictable cost structure
  • Environmental support

6 steps to prepare your organization for HPCaaS and GreenLake

If you want to prepare for HPCaaS, follow these 6 steps.

1. Check it out in the ATC to see what it can do

WWT customers can test drive solutions in the Advanced Technology Center (ATC) -- the biggest sandbox in the world for organizations like yours. Even if you are beginning the process of leveraging HPCaaS, giving it a test drive can help you envision how the solution could fit into your future plans.

2. Understand your organization's vision and strategy

To develop the best possible plan for HPCaaS, you would be wise to fully understand your company's goals for the next five years. Where are you today, and where do you need to be? What innovations are coming, and what areas hold the key to your growth, as best as your organization can ascertain?

3. Determine how HPCaaS can help you get there quicker

Given your organization's vision, what problems are you trying to solve in the world? What innovations do you need to support? What do your clients care about now, and what will they need in the future? And how can HPCaaS help you answer those questions?

4. Find out what your competitors are doing or organizations in adjacent industries

If possible, discover what your competitors or others in your industry or ecosystem are doing with HPCaaS. Another idea is to learn what companies in adjacent industries are doing to give you some ideas for how best to use HPCaaS to drive innovation and transformation and to prepare for the future.

5. Prepare and enhance your hybrid cloud strategy

Make sure your hybrid cloud strategy takes HPCaaS into account and can support all of your business's computing needs in the future. Make sure you include cybersecurity in your strategy, and that it is always foremost in your mind.

And finally, the absolute best way to prepare for HPCaaS is this:

6. Test it (again) in the ATC.

At this point in the process, you can use the ATC to quickly select and implement the best combination of solutions to meet their unique needs. You can do POCs and projects – bridging siloed business units and testing software, hardware and services.

The ATC helps future-proof your company by narrowing in on what your technology path may be in five years (you can't predict but you can try.) From ideation through strategy, architecture and design, and finally, to solutions, the ATC shines a light on your best plans.