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NEXT GENERATION OF SCIENTISTS USES SUPERCOMPUTER FROM THINKING MACHINES; BOSTON UNIVERSITY PROVIDES MASSIVELY PARALLEL COMPUTING TO UNDERGRADS

 BOSTON, March 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Boston University's Center for Computational Sciences is training the next generation of America's scientists by providing undergraduates direct access to parallel supercomputing. The purchase of a Connection Machine CM-5 supercomputer system from Thinking Machines Corporation of Cambridge, Mass., represents Boston University's ongoing commitment to leading-edge computational technologies.
 "Our students are working directly on a 8Gflops (eight billion floating point operations per second) CM-5 supercomputer, said Claudio Rebbi, director of the center. "The machines that were the most powerful when they were in high school will be obsolete by the time they reach graduate school. We have to get our students on parallel machines now so while they are still undergraduates. Then they will have the supercomputing training that future careers in industry and science will demand."
 "It is great to see the new generation of students being trained on the new generation of computers right from the beginning," added Danny Hillis, founding scientist at Thinking Machines.
 With support from the National Science Foundation, the center has introduced a new interdisciplinary curriculum in massively parallel computing. Already, more than 50 undergraduates pack the Introduction to Parallel Computing course, joined by university faculty and researchers who also attend.
 "We were quite surprised by the positive response to this challenging course," added Roscoe Giles, deputy director of the center. "We have people sitting on tables and standing in doorways just to listen to the lectures and participate in the discussions."
 "Access to the CM-5 allows our undergraduates to formulate and solve realistic problems requiring hundreds of thousands of variables and billion of operations for their solutions," said Giles. "Computation on this scale could not even be attempted with the mainframes that leading researchers depended on just a few years ago."
 In addition, students have extensive use of the University's graphics laboratory and attend weekly presentations from industry representatives and university researchers. The center's director is intent on maintaining this collaborative atmosphere.
 "Rapid progress in massively parallel computing technologies over the past few years is having a dramatic impact on science and industry," said Rebbi. "As educators, we now face the challenge of maintaining US leadership in high-performance computing by training the next generation of scientists to exploit these technologies. Encouraging interaction between researchers, students, and members of industry is an essential part of this training."
 Working with Thinking Machines and a wide range of other partners, the Center for Computational Science is pioneering applications development in massively parallel supercomputing. Today, more than 300 researchers form a dozen different departments, including physics, engineering, chemistry, and computer science, use the CM-5 on over 60 different projects.
 Thinking Machines Corporation is the world leader in design, development, and manufacture of massively parallel supercomputers. the company is headquartered in Cambridge, Mass, with offices worldwide.
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 NOTE: Connection Machine is a registered trademark of Thinking Machines Corporation. CM-5 is a trademark of Thinking Machines Corporation.
 -0- 3/17/93
 /CONTACT: Martha Keeley of Thinking Machines Corp., 617-234-5502, or Ilona Lappo, Center for Computational Science, 617-353-5637/


CO: Thinking Machines Corp. ST: Massachusetts IN: CPR SU:

TM -- NE002 -- 6888 03/17/93 08:59 EST
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Date:Mar 17, 1993
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