The years-long run-up to the first exascale supercomputers was really a story about the ongoing competition between the United States and China. Who was going to get there first? How long was it going to take? How much of an advantage would the country with the first exascale systems see in everything from technology to business to defense?
In more recent years, the European Union has muscled its way into the conversation through its EuroHPC program and plans to build three exascale-class supercomputers, with the first to be housed at the Forschungszentrum Jülich research institution in Germany and built with as many Euro-centric components, systems, and technologies as possible.
Now here comes the post-Brexit United Kingdom with its own plans to become a significant player on the HPC and AI scene. UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak last month announced the creation of the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT), pulling under one umbrella the tech-related duties that had been spread across the Departments for Digital, Culture, Media and Sports (DCMS) and Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS)
Sunak last week unveiled the first key piece out of DSIT, the Science and Technology Framework that includes ten points he wants all parts of the government to embrace, from showcasing the UK’s strengths in science and technology to boosting private and public investment and pursuing international diplomacy and partnerships.