And Then There Was One

A major U.S. contender drops out of the supercomputer race

"Monday was a sad day in American computing," declared Doyle Knight, president of New Jersey's John von Neumann National Supercomputer Center. What dismayed Knight was the announcement last week by Control Data, based in Minneapolis, that it would halt its money-losing six-year foray into the growing world market for supercomputers. The decision leaves Cray Research, its crosstown rival and the industry leader, as the only U.S. supercomputer maker at a time when Japan's industry is moving vigorously into the field.

First introduced by Cray in 1976, supercomputers possess vast number- crunching power, which has become increasingly valued in applications ranging from...

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