August 9, 2011 in Nation/World

In brief: IBM won’t build supercomputer

 

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – IBM Corp. on Monday dropped out of a project to build one of the world’s fastest supercomputers at the University of Illinois, saying it requires too much financial and technical support.

The move leaves the university looking for someone to build the $300 million-plus Blue Waters system. There is no guarantee the project that was originally expected to go online this year will continue.

When Blue Waters was announced in 2007 it was expected to be, at least for a time, the world’s fastest supercomputer. It was planned to run at sustained speeds of at least a thousand trillion operations a second, a measure known as a petaflop.

Rover nears edge of Mars crater

LOS ANGELES – Months after the death of the Mars rover Spirit, its surviving twin is poised to reach the rim of a vast crater to begin a fresh round of exploration.

Driving commands sent up to Opportunity directed the six-wheel rover to make the final push toward Endeavour crater, a 14-mile-wide depression near the Martian equator that likely could be its final destination.

At its current pace and barring any hiccups, Opportunity should roll up to the crater’s edge today. The finish line was a spot along a ridge that the rover team nicknamed “Spirit Point” in honor of Opportunity’s lost twin.

The NASA rovers parachuted to opposite sides of Mars in 2004 for what was a planned three-month mission, but both have operated beyond their factory warranty.

Spirit’s journey ended in May after NASA ceased trying to contact it. It had been trapped in sand and unheard from for more than a year.

Opportunity has been on a driving spree since 2008 after it crawled out of a much smaller crater and trundled south toward Endeavour, stopping occasionally to sightsee and examine rock outcrops.

Hotel maid sues Strauss-Kahn

NEW YORK – The woman who accused Dominique Strauss-Kahn of sexually assaulting her in May filed a lawsuit against the French politician Monday, alleging he sexually attacked her with “violence and depravity in his heart.”

Nafissatou Diallo, 32, the Sofitel hotel maid from Guinea , asked for unspecified damages in a 16-page complaint filed in State Supreme Court in the Bronx, where she lives.

Diallo claims in her lawsuit that Strauss-Kahn attacked her with such force the night of May 14 that he tore her shoulder and caused her to have painful urination for several days.

But Strauss-Kahn’s attorneys said the lawsuit showed that Diallo’s charges were all about money.

Ohio co-workers win $99 million

JEFFERSON, Ohio – A lucky group of co-workers in northeast Ohio will share last week’s $99 million Mega Millions lottery jackpot.

The Ohio Lottery said most of the 22 are workers from a cabinet-making company in Jefferson, midway between Cleveland and Youngstown. They came forward Monday to get their prize. Each will get about $2 million after taxes.

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