Sony Subsidises Supercomputers for the US Military?

Ars has a great article about how Sony through the Playstation 3’s awesome power (can’t you tell which of this generations consoles I own?) and subsidy (based on recoup of selling games and hardware - a model pioneered with the PS1)

With respect to cell processors, a single 1U server configured with two 3.2GHz cell processors can cost up to $8K while two Sony PS3s cost approximately $600. Though a single 3.2 GHz cell processor can deliver over 200 GFLOPS, whereas the Sony PS3 configuration delivers approximately 150 GFLOPS, the approximately tenfold cost difference per GFLOP makes the Sony PS3 the only viable technology for HPC applications.

Calling the PS3 “the only viable technology for HPC applications” is wildly overstating it, but we get the picture.

Read more of this fine article here.