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Ambition and innovation: the essentials for future success

EDITORIAL

D. Lamouche

Because it facilitates so much innovation in so many areas, information technology – which already accounts for 25% of global economic growth and will reach 30% within five years – is still the trump card.
But above and beyond IT services, networks or workstations, it is absolutely vital to invest in what will be key to future innovations: very large-scale ‘Cloud computing’ infrastructures, which will enable the necessary processing power to be shared in complete security.

The USA is investing heavily in these new ‘computing factories’, just as it has in the development of Information and Communications Technologies (ITCs); Europe cannot afford to miss the boat when it comes to this key technology. Where would the European economy be if all it did was to install power cables and depend totally on the USA or even China for its energy production? The same thing goes for computing power. Europe has to clearly demonstrate its digital ambition and its determination... fast. Its competitiveness in a globalized economy depends on it.

In France, we have suggested that part of the President’s new Government loan should be dedicated to the development of tomorrow’s very large-scale computing facilities. This is a strategic challenge, at an opportune moment, and we have the necessary skills to develop these IT infrastructures, equivalent to those needed for supercomputers, where we have developed renowned expertise that is recognized by our customers, from Europe to Latin America. In real terms, this will involve creating a network of Data Centers reserved for innovation, and made available to universities, research centers, SMEs and start-ups from the world of industry, to help accelerate their work.

I am convinced that, from this day forward, innovation has to be without compromise, and without limits. In the race for computing power, only the very largest supercomputers will enable ‘disruptive innovations’, and Tera 100 – Europe’s most powerful supercomputer, which we are currently building along with the CEA (the French Atomic Energy Authority) – is the immediate proof. From aeronautics to multimedia, from the oil industry to climatology, astrophysics to medicine, the strength of our offering rests in its ability to nurture the spread of innovation and research in every area, without exception.

Bull is committed to investing significantly in this, perhaps within the framework of a public-private partnership, for instance, to deliver the kind of ‘computing factory’ that will truly allow us to develop opportunities for sustainable, eco-friendly growth.

Didier Lamouche
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer