If you thought that quad-core rig of yours was fast, wait until you see what the folks at the University of Edinburgh's Advanced Computer Facility have just unveiled...
"Hector -- or the High-End Computing Terascale Resource -- can handle 63 trillion calculations per second, which is the equivalent processing power of 12,000 desktop systems and four times faster than its predecessor. The amount of calculations the system can handle is equivalent to every person on earth simultaneously carrying out 10,000 calculations per second.
The supercomputer is based at the University of Edinburgh's Advanced Computer Facility near the Scottish capital and will cost $221.3 million (113 million pounds) over six years. The facility will be operated by the Edinburgh Parallel Computing Center (EPCC)."
The article also states that an upgrade to Hector is already planned that should increase its number crunching ability to 250 teraflops by October 2009. And an additional upgrade is due two years later to further improve performance. Sounds pretty fast. I sure wish these guys would join our folding team.