SoftLayer, er, IBM, swipes DARPA robot challenge from Amazon


As proof that IBM(s ibm), SoftLayer’s new corporate overlord, is all over this cloud situation, check out Thursday’s news that the DARPA Virtual Robotics Grand Challenge has switched clouds —  moving from Amazon Web Services (s AMZN) to SoftLayer for this year’s competition. The goal of the contest, which drew 100 competitors, is to promote the development of advanced robots that can assist people in mitigating and recovering from disasters, according to the Open Source Robotics Foundation, which  builds and manages the simulation environment used in the DARPA-sponsored contest.

darpa robot challengeThe first phase was to design a “virtual” robot, which is where SoftLayer came in. The OSRF said all those virtual machines need to speak to each other at “hyper-fast speeds.” In a statement, OSRF said:

“SoftLayer offered power and speed, as well as a raw compute offering without any extra virtualization. SoftLayer was the only dedicated platform that could shorten the communication loop…

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