Stephen Hawking is first to use SGI's "Big Brain"

SGI’s new supercomputer, the UV2 “Big Brain” is being unveiled in time for next week’s International Supercomputing Conference.

Apparently the computer’s first user was Dr. Stephen Hawking who is also rather clever and he will be on hand to point out how it will unlock the secrets of the universe.

The UV2 is being billed as the world’s largest shared memory system. It has the ability to scale up to 4,096 cores and 64 terabytes of memory.

SGI says the UV 2 could ingest the entire 10 terabyte contents of the US Library of Congress in less than three seconds without needing to burp.

Hawking said his new UV 3 will mean that he can take into account new observations of our Universe, like the Planck satellite.

He said that in order to test our mathematical theories, he needed to put all this detail in our computer simulations.

“The flexible new UV 2 COSMOS system, soon to be supercharged with Intel’s MIC technology, will ensure that UK researchers remain at the forefront of fundamental and observational cosmology,” he said.

The SGI UV operates like a workstation, which makes it easier to use. SGI says the system can run anything from desktop applications to common scale-out applications, making it an alternative to small to medium clusters.

SGI UV2 will cost $30,000 and is based around the Intel Xeon processor E5 product family. It runs unmodified, off-the-shelf Linux software. SGI UV 2 also supports Intel’s MIC technology as well as NVIDIA Quadro GPUs and Tesla Accelerators