What is a FLOP?

Ever wonder about the meaning of a FLOP? Beyond a measure of number crunching, or simply the basis of the acronym – Floating Point Operation — what does FLOP mean for computing, and more specifically, supercomputing? This video with Greg Newby, director of the Arctic Region Supercomputing Center, at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks and Per Nyberg of Cray, Inc., dives into the meaning of flops as a measurement to compare high-performance computer speeds and what it means for scientists. “Scientists want to know, How quickly can I answer my problem?” said Newby. They also discuss the trends in today’s multi-core, many-core supercomputing and how it impacts the measurement of processing speed. The video, produced by Frontier Scientists at University of Alaska, Fairbanks, runs 4:15.

For more stories about supercomputing, see our High Performance Computing Channel. For additional video, check out our DCK video archive and the Data Center Videos channel on YouTube.

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About the Author

Colleen Miller is a journalist and social media specialist. She has more than two decades of writing and editing experience, with her most recent work dedicated to the online space. Colleen covers the data center industry, including topics such as modular, cloud and storage/big data.

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