Remember the multitasking buzz of 2005?
The arrival of the first dual-core processors for desktop and notebook computers allowed us to work on several computing tasks at the same time on a single PC. A core is a computer's brain or processing power.
Now imagine the computing power of 1,650 cores all working on the same problem. That's how many cores Chrysler uses in its high-performance computing simulations.
Chrysler uses a Linux cluster — essentially a string of linked, high-powered PCs — for these heavyweight computing chores instead of a single supercomputer. Specialized supercomputers designed to handle high-performance computing have long been the way that automakers performed their simulations.
Today, for crash simulations, nearly all automakers use a Linux cluster or a Linux cluster in addition to a traditional supercomputer, says Addison Snell, general manager of Tabor Research in San Diego.
Linux is a popular open-source operating system that runs on a variety of hardware platforms. It is used widely as a server operating system.