During the NVIDIA’s GTC Asia event this week in Beijing, the company put a set of emerging companies under the spotlight to showcase their use of innovative high performance computing and GPU-driven technologies.
While there are any number of startups or small but deserving companies that crop up each year to aim for the HPC market, we wanted to point to NVIDIA’s selection of emerging companies this week as they reflect some of the broader trends in the GPU computing space—namely, advancement of GPU acceleration into a wider set of markets and aimed at emerging industries that straddle the borders of traditional HPC or offer new capabilities to existing HPC industries, especially the rendering and entertainment sectors.
What is most interesting about the selections for GTC Asia’s Emerging Companies Summit is not necessarily the company status as a startup with a unique take on GPU use. In fact, many of those picked are established, fully operational companies with years under their belts.
The theme this year seems to be that all selections are companies that have been holding onto important technologies for a few years, but are only now able to find a high-value market for those technologies. This is because of a rapid convergence in many areas NVIDIA touches; namely, mobile, cloud and to a lesser extent (sorry, folks) HPC.
At the top of the summit list this week, however, was a company that has relatively deep roots in HPC verticals, particularly in oil and gas. Acceleware was featured as an emerging company, even though they do not necessarily define “emerging” in the traditional startup sense. The Canadian company has an established history beginning in 2005 with their first foray into the electromagnetic simulation market, a focus that later extended to include providing hardware acceleration to the seismic migration market (fitting due to their location in the heart of Canadian oil and gas country). They now serve a number of areas in engineering, finance and other HPC verticals.
In addition to their roots in a few key HPC verticals from inception, the company went public back in 2006, followed by a $3 million boost from NVIDIA the next year. While the small company may not be “emerging” in the bootstrapped sense one might expect, they are being led out of the shadows because the technologies they’ve been honing over the recent decade are in line to finally meet a market mature enough to adopt software-based acceleration in far larger numbers. In short, as GPU clusters find their way into more enterprise shops, the demand for their offerings could subsequently increase.
As an emerging company, some might suggest that they are poised to meet to the multicore era and age of massively parallel GPU architectures in a way few companies are, a key driver behind their position as a featured company this year.
Acceleware is not a one-trick pony when it comes to HPC. In addition to offering CUDA and OpenCL training, GPU cluster solutions (with NVIDIA GPUs), and general consulting for the core industries they serve, their range of ISV partnerships allows them to offer accelerated solvers for oil and gas and beyond.
While Acceleware might represent the emerging company to suit oil and gas and engineering markets, many of NVIDIA’s other choices catered directly to the rendering and video-driven end of their GPU business. For instance, both ZANQI Technology Development Co. Ltd, which provides a 3D internet-based and GPU-boosted rendering software as a service offering and GPU code transplanting service as well as video delivery company QIYI tap into the emerging markets driven forth by the convergence of mobile and cloud and the need for sophisticated rendering capabilities delivered rapidly across a range of devices.
Read more @ http://www.hpcwire.com/hpcwire/2011-12-15/emerging_companies_ride_wave_of_gpu_computing.html