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Re: Serious question (not trolling)
Neal Wise said:
> this isn't correct. the olympics, at least Nagano & Sydney (and i think
> Atlanta), ran on IBM RS/6000 SPs (parallel-clustered RS/6000s) placed
> strategically around the world. User machines and whatnot might be
> windows-running stuff but the servers for the websites and backends were
> serious RS/6000 clusters. They may've also been using 390s (mainframes)
> and AS/400s a bit too but AIX carried most of the load for the websites
> and is one of IBM's big promoted solutions.
I can confirm what Neal said. I was somewhat involved, though not heavily,
with some of the big sporting event configurations that IBM ran and yes it
was mostly running on RS/6000 hardware. And yes, they had some really
awesome global load balancing and ping triangulation going on to
intelligently place you on the most currently available and closest (based
on network geography, not physical geography) web server in the pool. This
was using their Network Dispatcher product which has unfortunately become a
minor bullet point in the Websphere Performance Pack bundle. That product
was very tight and sold well on its own before they got on the bundling
The whitepapers on this product were borrowed heavily from by some of the
various free or open source TCP load balancing products. IBM has a number
of patents on this technology that apply, but it is interesting that their
current love affair with Linux is preventing them politically from swooping
down with their lawyers and squashing the open source projects that infringe
on their patent rights. IBM is aware of these projects, and the ND project
team was certainly aware of them as early as 1999 (when the internal
awareness of Linux at IBM was starting to pick up steam).
> IBM has also done the same for several other large sporting events like
> the last several Australian Open tennis events and such. I haven't been
> paying attention to Salt Lake City so far so I don't know if IBM is doing
> the tech this time around.
2000 was supposed to be the last olympic event. I am no longer at IBM so I
don't know if they had a change of heart or not.
High tech rednecks on the Information Dirt Road.