London, December 5 : An American company has unveiled the world's first personal supercomputer, which is 250 times faster than the average PCs.
David Kirk, chief scientist at the company NVIDIA, has revealed that the Tesla supercomputers will go on sale for more than 4,000 pounds.
Most consumers may consider that amount very hefty, but the company says that it is just a tiny fraction of what computers with similar capabilities usually cost.
The designers of the novel supercomputer believe that it should be able to help doctors process the results for brain and body scans much more quickly, allowing them to tell patients within hours instead of days whether they have a tumour.
Scientists also hope that they will be able to find cures for cancer and malaria faster than traditional research, as the novel personal supercomputer would enable them to run hundreds of thousands of simulations to create a shortlist of the most potent drugs.
"Pretty much anything that you do on your PC that takes a lot of time can be accelerated with this," Times Online quoted David Kirk, chief scientist at NVIDIA, as saying.
Unlike previous supercomputers that needed huge rooms for installation, Tesla personal supercomputers will look like the PC that many people already have in their homes.
"These supercomputers can improve the time it takes to process information by 1,000 times. If you imagine it takes a week to get a result [from running an experiment], you can only do it 52 times a year. If it takes you minutes, you can do it constantly, and learn just as much in a day," Dr Kirk said.
The new computers make innovative use of graphics processing units (GPUs).
They were first launched in the U.S. last month, and became available to British customers on December 4.
Tesla supercomputers will initially be sold to the scientific and research community and universities.
The PC maker Dell said that it would soon be mass-producing them for the general consumer market.
Eric Greffier, a Dell senior executive, said: "Before mobile phones were reserved for the few, now we can't live without them. It will be the same with these supercomputers. They are the building block for the computing of the future."