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talljasperman's avatar

Does the supercomputer Titan, or any supercomputer, have any cool video games on it?

Asked by talljasperman (19167 points ) July 22nd, 2014

Or is it all business and science?

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5 Answers

Darth_Algar's avatar

Just Pong and Snake maybe. That’s about all they can handle.

In all seriousness though I highly doubt Titan would be used at all for something like gaming, considering the kind of shit they do at Oak Ridge.

talljasperman's avatar

@Darth_Algar What kind of shit they do at Oak Ridge?

Darth_Algar's avatar

High level national security type research and shit.

zenvelo's avatar

I doubt it has a decent graphics card and monitor, or even a good mouse.

jerv's avatar

It’s unlikely that any supercomputer would have any games simply because they’re all “work” machines, whether for a research lab, corporation, or government agency.

Besides, the way they’re set up, they probably wouldn’t make good gaming rigs. First off, they’re likely highly optimized for tasks other than graphics; customized (and probably Linux- based) OS and all. Second, most games can’t handle multi-core CPUs very well, while most supercomputers are not only multi-core, but multi-CPU… and not always one that uses the same instruction set as Intel and AMD chips that games are written for.

While it’s theoretically possible for them to run emulators to handle games (most likely written for Windows), the overhead would cause a significant performance hit. Also, re-read the first paragraph.

Comparing a high-end gaming rig to a supercomputer is like comparing an F1 racecar to an aircraft carrier. One is fast fun while the other is far more utilitarian, and while technically more powerful, uses that power to alter the world as opposed to merely entertain whoever is at the controls.

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