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Intel says CUDA will be nothing but a footnote in computer history

Intel and NVIDIA compete in many different ways. The most notable place we see competition between the two companies is in chipset manufacturing. Intel and NVIDIA also compete in the integrated graphics market where Intel’s integrated graphics chips lead the market.

NVIDIA started competing with Intel in the data processing arena with the CUDA programming language. Intel’s Pat Gelsinger, co-general manager of Intel’s Digital Enterprise Group, told Custom PC that NVIDIA’s CUDA programming model would be nothing more than an interesting footnote in the annals of computing history.

According to Gelsinger, programmers simply don’t have enough time to learn how to program for new architectures like CUDA. Gelsinger told Custom PC, “The problem that we’ve seen over and over and over again in the computing industry is that there’s a cool new idea, and it promises a 10x or 20x performance improvements, but you’ve just got to go through this little orifice called a new programming model. Those orifices have always been insurmountable as long as the general purpose computing models evolve into the future.”

The Sony Cell architecture illustrates the point according to Gelsinger. The Cell architecture promised huge performance gains compared to normal architectures, but the architecture still isn’t supported widely by developers.

Intel’s Larrabee graphics chip will be entirely based on Intel Architecture x86 cores says Gelsinger. The reason for this is so that developers can program for the graphics processor without having to learn a new language. Larrabee will have full support for APIs like DX and OpenGL.

NVIDIA’s CUDA architecture is what makes it possible to process complex physics calculations on the GPU, enabling PhysX on the GPU rather than CPU.



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RE: CUDA a joke ???
By CBone on 7/2/2008 6:54:13 PM , Rating: 2
He's right. It is a pain to have to learn new programming models based on the huge performance gains touted, to only get a fraction of that out of it in the end. Those industries you mentioned would like to not have to use CUDA or CTM or any other new language. Do you know how much work it would take to troubleshoot and rewrite all of their code to be compatible or make new software from scratch?

quote:
Er, Mr. Geisinger, have you by any chance asked those in the oil industry and in the weather forecasting business, in technical academic research and in high-tech engineering industries and in the professional image-processing industries whether CUDA is a joke??


That sounds good, but it's a lot of work, new hardware, and research just to use them. If Larrabee can bring the speed while letting a company's current programming staff use what they already know, Intel will win if it can come anywhere close to their performance estimates.


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