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AMD and ATI are already planning scalable designs for 2008
"Torrenza" platforms and unified GPU/CPU processors

AMD announced the $5.4B USD takeover of ATI earlier today, but the new company is already making large plans for the future.  Dave Orton, soon-to-be Executive Vice President of AMD's ATI Division, claimed that AMD and ATI would begin leveraging the sales of both companies by 2007.  However, a slide from the AMD/ATI merger documentation has already shown some interesting development plans for 2008.

Specifically, it appears as though AMD and ATI are planning unified, scalable platforms using a mixture of AMD CPUs, ATI chipsets and ATI GPUs.  This sort of multi-GPU, multi-CPU architecture is extremely reminiscent of AMD's Torrenza technology announced this past June, which allows low-latency communications between chipset, CPU and main memory. The premise for Torrenza is to open the channel for embedded chipset development from 3rd party companies. AMD said the technology is an open architecture, allowing what it called "accelerators" to be plugged into the system to perform special duties, similar to the way we have a dedicated GPU for graphics.

Furthermore, AMD President Dirk Meyer also confirmed that in addition to multi-processor platforms, stating "As we look towards ever finer manufacturing geometries we see the opportunity to integrate CPU and GPU cores together onto the same die to better serve the needs of some segments."  A clever DailyTech reader recently pointed out that AMD just recently filed its first graphics-oriented patent a few weeks ago.  The patent, titled "CPU and graphics unit with shared cache" seems to indicate that these pet projects at AMD are a little more than just pipe dreams.

During the AMD/ATI merger conference call, Meyer furthermore added that not too long ago, floating point processing was done on a separate piece of silicon.  Meyer claimed that the trend for the FPU integration into the CPU may not be too different than the evolution of the GPU into the CPU.

Bob Rivet, AMD's Chief Financial Officer, claims the combined company will save nearly $75M USD in licensing and development overlap in 2007 alone, and another $125M in 2008.  Clearly the combined development between the two companies has a few cogs in motion already.


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RE: An Idea
By david99 on 7/27/2006 2:08:04 PM , Rating: 3
So what if, let us say in 5-10 years. AMD builds a quad core processor, All four cores are physically identical. Each core though can function as either a general purpose cpu, a video processor, a physics processor by utilizing "Field programable Gate Array" technology similar what is described on this link http://www.progeniq.com/tech.html

far better FPGAs exist today, the Kilocore™ with its 1,024 processing elements.

its interesting that AMD were licencing several IBM patents,
wonder if evolution of these KiloCORE might serve us well into the future on all future motherboards.

http://www.technewsworld.com/story/49772.html
" IBM, Rapport Unveil Energy-Wise Power Chip
IBM (NYSE: IBM) and Power.org member Rapport unveiled a new energy-efficient processor dubbed Kilocore that features more than 1,000 processing elements around a Power chip architecture.

Kilocore -- with parallel processing similar to that of the new Cell processor, Sun's Niagara, and Azul's multi-core chip -- has the ability to join hundreds or even thousands of parallel processing elements on a single chip that saves energy by cutting the distance for computing signals."


http://www.rapportincorporated.com/kilocore/kiloco...
"Kilocore™ Overview
Conventional technology is unable to meet the processing and power consumption requirements of many of today’s complex products such as audio, video and data processing “securely” on mobile devices. In addition, evolving standards and next generation functional requirements often move faster than today’s development design cycle creating product obsolescence before shipment.

Kilocore™ products can be upgraded in the field via software, enabling delivery of next generation features while creating potential downstream revenue models.

Dynamically Reconfigurable Computing

Kilocore™ processors use a powerful new parallel computing architecture that dramatically lowers power consumption for equivalent computational performance. Kilocore™ technology utilizes arrays of dynamically reconfigurable parallel processing elements optimized for performance. Each processing element in a Kilocore™ stripe can be dynamically reconfigured in one clock cycle. Kilocore™ tools support both dynamic reconfiguration of processing elements and formatting of all types of data. The unique Kilocore™ architecture provides the following benefits:

Flexibility: functions can be dynamically changed in a single clock cycle.
Performance: unprecedented performance via simultaneous computing of multiple functions.
Scalability: hundreds to thousands of processing elements on a single chip.
Efficiency: Extremely low power consumption.
Rapport's KC256 Chip utilizing Kilocore™ Architecture"





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