US boffins have unveiled a prototype for a revolutionary new general-purpose processor which they claim has the potential to clock up trillions of calculations per second. The Tera-op Reliable Intelligently adaptive Processing System (Trips) was designed and built by a team of computer scientists at the University of Texas at Austin. Professors Stephen Keckler, Doug Burger and Kathryn McKinley have been working on the underlying technology that culminated in the Trips prototype for seven years.
The research team designed and built the hardware prototype chips and the software that runs on the chips. "The Trips prototype is the first on a roadmap that will lead to ultra-powerful, flexible processors implemented in nanoscale technologies," said Burger, associate professor of computer sciences at the University of Texas. He explained that Trips is a new class of processing architecture called Explicit Data Graph Execution which, unlike conventional architectures that process one instruction at a time, can process large blocks of information all at once and more efficiently.