IBM (Quote, Company Info) made its first on-demand computing play of the new year Thursday when it extended its vaunted ubiquitous computing services to supercomputing.
As with many of its on-demand endeavors, Big Blue is offering customers the option of scaling software requirements out as much as needed, but without the fixed costs associated with most software licensing schemes. Specifically, IBM customers now may choose between buying POWER or Intel processor-based supercomputer clusters or access the power on demand, paying for processing power based on the required capacity and duration of use.
IBM hopes to convince the enterprise that its flexible payment approach to scalability closely resembles the way the Internet works. Dave Jursik, vice president of WorldWide Linux Cluster Sales, told internetnews.com his company is providing a virtualized resource that customers can draw as needed.
"Customers in some sectors want access to large scale computing power in short bursts," Jursik said. "Supercomputing on demand promises to help turn fixed costs into variable costs, matching supercomputing power exactly to customer demand."