- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 28, 2022

The National Ocean and Atmospheric Agency has flipped the proverbial start switch on two new “weather and climate supercomputers” on their first operational run. The federal agency is entering a new era.

“More computing power will enable NOAA to provide the public with more detailed weather forecasts further in advance,” NOAA administrator Rick Spinrad said in a statement shared with Inside the Beltway.

“This is a big day for NOAA and the state of weather forecasting,” Ken Graham, director of NOAA’s National Weather Service, also said in a statement.



Enhanced computing and storage capacity will yield higher-resolution, more realistic prediction models for the forecasters to delve into. The computers themselves are particularly intriguing.

“The twin Hewlett Packard Enterprise Cray supercomputers, called Dogwood and Cactus, are named after the flora native to their geographic locations of Manassas, Virginia, and Phoenix, Arizona, respectively,” NOAA noted in a background advisory.

“Each supercomputer operates at a speed of 12.1 petaflops, three times faster than NOAA’s former system. Coupled with NOAA’s research and development supercomputers in West Virginia, Tennessee, Mississippi, and Colorado, which have a combined capacity of 18 petaflops, the supercomputing capacity supporting NOAA’s new operational prediction and research is now 42 petaflops,” the agency said.

And of course Inside the Beltway attempted to look up the definition of “petaflops.” It is way too complex for this short space — but just consider that a “petaflop” essentially stands for a quadrillion “floating-point operations per second” (FLOPS).

So how do Dogwood and Cactus fare in the global computer derby? General Dynamics Information Technology — which played a role in the project development and is also known as GDIT — reveals their official standing on the planet.

“According to GDIT, Dogwood and Cactus are currently ranked as the 49th and 50th fastest computers in the world,”  NOAA noted.

A VISIT WITH MR. SNERDLEY

Fans of the late talk-radio giant Rush Limbaugh will likely enjoy a new podcast featuring James Golden — aka “Bo Snerdley” — who served as Limbaugh’s executive producer for 30 years.

The 35-minute interview is conducted by Michael Harrison, founder of the talk-radio industry source Talkers Magazine.

Mr. Golden, incidentally, is now a daily afternoon host on WABC in New York City, and author of the new book “Rush on the Radio: A Tribute from his Sidekick of 30 Years,” published by All Season Press.

Find the gentlemen’s exchange at podcastone.com/episode/James-Golden.

‘COMPETING RIGHTS’

The mother-to-be or the unborn baby: Who has “more” rights?” asks a new Monmouth University poll. Here’s what the survey found:

“When asked about viewing abortion as a question of competing rights, 66% say the pregnant woman should be afforded more rights during the first three months, while 23% say the unborn fetus should have more rights. Opinion is split on relative rights during the second trimester – 46% say the fetus should have more rights and 44% say the woman should. During the final three months of pregnancy, 53% say the rights of the unborn fetus should prevail while 37% say the pregnant woman should have more rights,” the poll analysis said.

The Monmouth University Poll of 747 U.S. adults was conducted June 24-28.

THE WHISPERS OF HILLARY 2024

The notion that former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton should run for president in 2024 has resurfaced once again.

“Now is her moment. The Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe vs. Wade creates the opening for Hillary Clinton to get out of stealth mode and start down the path toward declaring her candidacy for the 2024 Democratic presidential nomination. Conditions are favorable,” wrote John Ellis, news editor for Substack,com.

Commentator Juan Williams declared that Mrs. Clinton is “exactly the right person to put steel in the Democrat’s spine.”
Chris Cillizza, CNN editor-at-large, tracked the clues in a column titled “The whispers of Hillary Clinton 2024 have started,” published Tuesday.

“While I find it utterly implausible that Clinton would run against [President] Biden in a primary in 2024, I also think that an open nomination — if Biden takes a pass on running — would be something that would be hard for Clinton to not at least look at. That’s not to say she would run. It’s only to say that her name would get bandied about if the seat was open. That’s a lock,” Mr. Cillizza wrote.

“Then there’s the Roe decision to consider. Clinton’s comments about not running again came before Roe was decided. As someone who has fought for women’s rights throughout her career as first lady, US senator and secretary of state, might the Supreme Court’s ruling have changed her calculus somewhat as she looks to her own future? Again, the chances are very slim that Clinton runs again. But they aren’t zero,” he said.

FOXIFIED

Fox News finished the second quarter of 2022 as cable’s most-watched cable news network, drawing a nightly average of 2.3 million primetime viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research. This marks the 82nd consecutive quarter that Fox News bested the competition in the field of cable news. In contrast, MSNBC drew an audience of 1.1 million and CNN 670,000.

And the standouts: “The Five” (an average of 3.3 million nightly viewers), “Tucker Carlson Tonight” (3.2 million average), “Hannity” (2.7 million) “Jesse Watters Primetime” (2.7 million) and “Special Report with Bret Baier” (2.5 million).

POLL DU JOUR

• 99% of “mid-size business leaders” report their cost of doing business has increased.

• 81% say they are likely to continue raising prices.

• 77% say increased costs to retain employees as a cause of rising prices.

• 74% cite supply chain issues as a cause.

• 71% say high cost of doing business and inflation as their top challenge.

• 51% are pessimistic about the national economy, 19% are optimistic.

SOURCE: A JP Morgan Chase 2022 Business Leaders Outlook Pulse Survey of 1,500 mid-size business leaders conducted May 25-June 10 and released Monday.

Follow Jennifer Harper on Twitter @HarperBulletin.

Correction: A photo used in the Inside the Beltway column on June 28 was incorrectly captioned. The photo is courtesy of General Dynamics Information Technology (GDIT).

• Jennifer Harper can be reached at jharper@washingtontimes.com.

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