On Monday, the Top 500 list was outlined at the International Supercomputing Conference in Hamburg. These systems are ranked based on their Linpack scores, an application designed to solve dense linear equations.
The biggest takeaway on the list is that a system needs to operate at a petaflop per second scale to break the top 10. The U.S. has five systems operating at a petaflop scale, Japan and China have two each and France has one.
Japan's K Computer bumped the previous top dog---China's Tianhe-1A supercomputer. The K Computer is built by Fujitsu and has 548,352 cores, or 68,544 SPARC64 VIIIfx CPUs with eight cores each. It's also notable that the K Computer doesn't use graphics processors or accelerators.
Other odds and ends:
China has 62 systems in the Top 500 list to be No. 2 to the U.S.
Intel has 77.4 percent of the systems in the list.
Quad-core processors are used in 46.2 percent of the systems with 42.4 percent using six or more cores.