“The Machine” is an ominous, post-apocalyptic sounding name for a massive HPE research project, but it’s one that’s generating a lot of buzz. On Monday, the company revealed it’s built a new proof-of-concept computing prototype called Memory-Driven computing with the goal of faster processing the massive amounts of data organizations collect.
The Machine, if successful, will change the way HPE builds servers, one of its core product lines. The Register explains that the Machine uses advanced photonics to increase processing speeds of data by focusing resources on memory chips rather than processors, a pretty significant shift away from how today’s servers operate and are designed. The company says that if it works, The Machine will increase the power of servers by hundreds of thousands of times.
“We have achieved a major milestone with The Machine research project—one of the largest and most complex research projects in our company’s history,” HPE executive vice president Antonio Neri said in a statement. "With this prototype, we have demonstrated the potential of Memory-Driven Computing and also opened the door to immediate innovation. Our customers and the industry as a whole can expect to benefit from these advancements as we continue our pursuit of game-changing technologies."
The Machine technology is still very much in the research and development phase, with HPE experimenting with alternate types of memory chips, Fabric-Attached Memory compute nodes, customized ‘System on a Chip’ that runs a Linux-based OS and Exascale high performance computing.
There’s no telling when The Machine will be ready for widespread use, but here’s hoping they come up with a slightly more warm and fuzzy name before then.