Intel Reveals Teraflop Processor

A chip with 80 processing cores and capable of more than a trillion calculations per second (teraflop) has been unveiled by Intel. While it is not a commercial release it does pave the way to more powerful processors says the firm. The chip achieves the same performance as a machine 11 years ago that had 10,000 chips inside it.

In contrast, home computers currently have up to four core processors, while the PS3 uses seven. The challenge Intel faces, is programming a product that would instruct the cores to work in parallel with each other. Intel's chip uses less power than some current chips, drawing 62 watts, and the separate cores can power on and off independently.

There are already specialist chips with multiple cores - such as those used in router hardware and graphics cards - but Dr Mark Bull, at the Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre, said multi-core chips were forcing a sea-change in the programming of desktop applications. "It's not too difficult to find two or four independent things you can do concurrently, finding 80 or more things is more difficult, especially for desktop applications. It is going to require quite a revolution in software programming."

View: BBC News

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Well, this is just a test chip, and although it hits 1tflop, it's just very basic data shuffling around, not much you can do with these cores on todays PC. But, it sets the base for intels future plans, the FSB is dead, and even HT will be tossed aside by this new mesh type connection and routing stuff they have in there.

What this lets them do later on is mix and match cores on one physical processer for whatever task is needed, they could all be x86 cores, or half of them could be graphics cores, or some could be physics cores and so on, for no extra cost and the speed between the cores is way behond what HT3.0 could even wish to do.

We're really talking cutting edge tech here, I can't wait to see how it turns out. This is pretty much Intels answer to whatever AMD is trying to do with their fusion tech and GPU/CPU combo.

Well, I wound't count AMD out yet. I'm sure they'll have something to couner that. It's not like they're gonna throw their hands up in the air and give up.

Pfft. This is just a R/D prototype/marketing device.

The really important thing inside this design is the way they manage traffic within the CPU between the cores. This does not mean that They've beaten AMD in any way. AMD CAN design a chip like this if they wanted to (even better in fact), it's just that it would serve no purpose. This chip cannot be used in day-to-day applications, server workloads, or even clusters.

AMD has a better design for managing traffic between cores at the moment, and I'm sure they've already laid out their plans for future Multicore-CPU traffic management that scales well.

I see this product as a sign of weakness in the part of Intel.

most home computers currently have four core processors

What are you talking about man? Two cores is the home standard at the moment, not four cores!

You beat me to it, lol

I was gonna ask if Intel had somehow been quietly shipping Quad core processors en masse to everyone, and mine must be somewhere way down the list.

The average home pc right now has a single processor, dual cores arent even standard yet (give it another couple of years and yeah they will be), but no way is it 4 cores.

Although I'm impressed by the statistic

The chip achieves the same performance as a machine 11 years ago that had 10,000 chips inside it.

But then maybe its late, and I'm supposed to be impressed by it.

Still, cant wait for these to come out, it will be interesting to see what kind of challenges they solve, especially for the "average" user.