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Paul Otellini holds up a wafer with 6400 cores
Intel promises teraflop chips within the next five years

Intel today announced that it has produced its first teraflop-on-a-chip.  The chip, essentially a prototype, was demonstrated when Intel CEO Paul Otellini showed off the wafer during this week's IDF conference opening keynote.

Each of the 80 processors on the wafer contain a die with eighty cores -- 6400 cores in total.  Each CPU has more than one terabyte per second of throughput between the CPU cores and the on-die SRAM. Otellini claims that this technology will be available within 5 years, putting it in line with the previously outlined Gesher family expected to ship in 2010. 

To put that into perspective, the fastest public supercomputer in 1996 was the ASCI Red which featured over 4,500 compute nodes using 200MHz Pentium Pro processors and was the first computer to break the 1 teraflops barrier.

Each of the individual CPUs runs at 3.1GHz in a very simple configuration.  These are far from production-ready processors and are mainly for demonstration purposes.  Each processor is also unique in the fact that the packaging is three dimensional.  The cache substrate is "stacked" directly underneath the FPUs, thus saving space and latency. 

The processors are just one component of Intel's Tera-Scale initiative -- a set of research projects geared to bringing multi-teraflop systems to the masses by 2010.  More objectives of this project, including software design, will be announced later during the Intel Developer Forum.

Intel also today announced the official name for its quad-core desktop and server CPU: the Core 2 Quad. As its name implies, the processor contains four cores and features a 1066MHz front-side bus. For benchmarks on the Core 2 Quad, you can check out DailyTech’s Kentsfield article from yesterday.

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RE: Okay so....
By bobdeer1965 on 9/27/2006 4:01:38 PM , Rating: 2
If Intel didn't exist, would the world of computing power be stagnant? Seems that way recently.

8 months ago you probably said the same thing about AMD and now you jump the fence and take the Intel side as soon as they leapfrog AMD. The fact is AMD still has the better technology. That doesn't mean faster "yet" but it is superior. You need to read a little more and don't take sides so fast and don't wear blinders. I use AMD exclusively but I still give Intel credit for having the fastest processor right now. They just have the problem of resisting ALL technology that they didn't invent themselves. Like on die memory controller. And Hypertransport. Both superior technology. BUT they will change because AMD put them on notice for the last 3 years that the market won't stand for this kind of thinking.

RE: Okay so....
By MrDiSante on 9/27/2006 6:05:28 PM , Rating: 1
And AMD can have loads of fun scaling the HyperTransport to supporting 4, 8 and eventually 16 cores. To say that someone has better technology but is losing in terms of performance is silly. On paper netburst may have looked wonderful, however it didn't work all that well practice has shown. Intel messed up the last 5 years now it's time for AMD to seem the screw-up, it's all a perfectly natural cycle and there's no reason whatsoever that one shouldn't switch sides to whatever company has the better solution at the moment.

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