I had a chance to spend a day in Chandler, Arizona (not a boondoggle if you go in July!) with David Baker and his Enterprise Server Engineering team, which is part of Intel’s Developer Relations Division.
In layman’s terms, these are the guys that do all the work with our software partners to optimize performance on Xeon servers. We drive this team crazy every time we launch a new Xeon server chip because all of the OEM and ISV partners look for benchmarks to show off their respective hardware and software performance. Internally, even the Intel server group is equally guilty because they want to feature multi core and scaling performance, along with neat new features like our AES-NI encryption instructions but, as we all know, benchmarks are benchmarks. Every partner looks for the one that will highlight some unique feature of their implementation, and that’s all well and good. However, while customers may view benchmarks as necessary, rarely are they sufficient to demonstrate the actual deployed real world workloads (I know, you are shocked!).
As a result, the months in between Intel Xeon chip launches are actually just as busy for our team in Chandler. That’s when they essentially work on customer workloads, and/or interesting emerging technologies like the Franz Semantic Database. Do you know about Triples? While there is still pressure; it’s a much more creative environment as they get the variety of challenges introduced by new technology like Franz’s AllegroGraph.
Lately, the team has had the chance to work with a lot of healthcare partners. For me, this is ultimately the “most real” application you get to show end user’s visible technology improvements, such as faster diagnostic scan results. Whether it is delivered from dedicated systems or it is Software as a Service, applications don’t get more mission critical than healthcare.
“In critical patient care situations like a stroke, time is essential. Significant technology advancements like the Intel® Xeon® processor 5500 series processor combined with our Vitrea fX brain perfusion application enable the fast processing of large amounts of image data to provide doctors with quantitative results related to patients’ regional cerebral blood volume (rCBV), mean transit time (MTT) and regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF).” – Vikram Simha, Chief Technical Officer, Vital Images
Hopefully, you also caught my recent blog about how Intel Xeons help deliver digital mammogram results even faster and more efficiently.
There are a lot of yet to be announced efforts underway in additional healthcare workloads, BI, drug discovery and other areas. If you’re a partner and you’ve worked with this talented team, or you work with them now, feel free to send along a thank-you! Keep watching for future results, and keep sending us challenges!