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"Torrenza" systems will accept both multi-core, accelerators, or "Fusion" processors
AMD sheds more light on accelerated processing projects

This week at CeBIT 2007, AMD revealed more details about its "accelerated computing" platform, codenamed Torrenza. AMD's goal behind Torrenza is to create a platform where application-specific processors can interact cost effectively and offer better performance than a general purpose CPU, while remaining compatible with off the shelf platforms.

AMD guidance revealed this week that future processors will also have integrated "accelerators" embedded into them. A Torrenza system will have at least two sockets, and both will accept accelerators and accelerated CPUs.

One accelerated-processor project on AMD plate, slated for 2008 under the codename Fusion, and combines a dedicated GPU or GPU accelerator onto the same package or even the same silicon die as the main CPU. AMD has already set the ground-work for Fusion processing with its Stream Computing initiative -- utilizing ATI-based graphics adaptors for heavy number crunching. 

Other Torrenza ready projects are also coming to light.  Clearspeed announced its CSX600 math-coprocessor plug-in last year, with the stated intention of creating a socket plugin version for Torrenza.  Los Alamos National Labs is currently building the world's fastest supercomputer, Roadrunner, with Opteron and Cell processors on the Torrenza platform.

Torrenza is not just locked within the compounds of the CPU sockets. According to AMD, Torrenza systems will accept accelerators in a PCI-Express interface too, allow for multiple application specific accelerators to access system memory and processor functions directly.  Mercury systems announced a PCIe plug-in accelerator late last year.

While Torrenza is well on its way to seeing daylight, Intel is also working on its own open architecture platform. Notorious for keeping its CPU platform a closely guarded technology, Intel indicated that it was working on a competitive technology to AMD's HyperTransport, dubbed CSI, allowing direct CPU and memory access.

Intel guidance suggests the company will announce its Torrenza competitor sometime in mid-2008.


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By dsumanik on 3/20/2007 2:06:17 PM , Rating: 2
Although your post is well written, and informative, i think you are living in somewhat of a pipe dream...id love to agree with you but i can't, reality is getting in the way.

I love AMD, i own a dual core x2 and even compared to C2D im sorry it still has alot of processing power, we are so spoiled now with the chips coming out these days., you simply cant go wrong with amd, intel, nvidia, or ati.

Its incredible, and the competition has fueled it all and made it cheaper for everyone.

You seem to downplay the inportance of the current state of thnigs, regarding intels market share, technical superiority, and ability to litelrally waste billions till they make something better,

Shrugging of the desktop segment saying that it is not that important and that fusion is about the power to optionally have specialized processors to crunch mega FP numbers so you win the folding@home trophy of the year and have a 16 socket enterprise server to kick intel's behind...is a very narrow and isoloted point of view.

Fast desktop CPU/Platform is the most important segment, period.

Why?

Fusion sounds great, it'll probably rock.

But teraflops, dual cpu's/gpu's and a massive pile of marketing speak wont hide the fact that its a very long way off still, especially for AMD, intel could pull off something like that in a year or so if it really wanted to, but AMD has troubles producing enough yields to keep up wth a single architecture, and will continue to do so until it gains more market share...its like a chicken and the egg syndrome.

Never mind producing enough for something ambitious as a multi socket, specialized purpose processer, integrated multi core/gpu platform, something revolutionary and far different than any platform in previous existence.

Then gettting the YIELDS, for it.

It is definately possible, and will for sure happen...AMD isnt going anywhere....

But

Its a long ways away.

And quite frankly to all of us it sounds and looks great....but to the average joe on the street...they just want a COMPUTER.

that works.

they want email, internet, games, and music...how it is displayed or handled..they really dont care.

We are like 5%, the computer nerds.

My uncle?

No idea what fusion is, and proably wouldn't be able to understand and even more likely...WOULDN'T EVEN CARE...if i tried to explain to him.

Same with my boss, my girlfriend, my grandma, my best friend. They know that a fast computer is better though, and they hate waiting for email, downloads, or "opening" things.

ANd thats the problem, they just want a fast computer, they dont care how it works..and when it comes down to it, very few of even the readers of this site will be dealing with multi core/ multi socket > 4 CPU server platforms, from either AMD or Intel.

It is my job daily, and im telling you 95% of the businesses out there use the cheapest, (take IBM for example, they use 10 year old second hand technology for their clients regularly.) and for the most part insufficient technology they can to run thier business.

So...servers, thier benchmarks, specialized processors, folding, floating point prowess and platforms will be of little consequence to the majority of business consumers, and of no importance to the average joe.

A corporate client wants something that works, for half the cost you quote them them, even if it is slower and or/possibly insufficient.

They just want to buy a fast computer that works, for around a thousand bucks.

In order to win our hearts and their dollars,

AMD needs to either be cheaper, faster, or both than intel.

its very soon to be the exact opposite for AMD unfortunately.

Thats how they got here with X2, and where they need to focus and win with barcelona.

GO AMD!


"The Space Elevator will be built about 50 years after everyone stops laughing" -- Sir Arthur C. Clarke

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