updated 04:30 pm EDT, Tue July 1, 2008
Intel thousand-core chips?
Yesterday's entry on Intel's Research@Intel blog by the company's Microprocessor Technology Lab Principal Engineer, Anwar Ghuloum, suggests the chipmaker will eventually offer chips with cores that count in the thousands, and tens and hundreds before that. In the blog, Ghuloum writes about working with external developers to take advantage of multi-core and terascale chips his company is developing.
Ghuloum urges developers to adjust their algorithmic development and deployment pipeline that would take advantage of these chip designs when they become available. Developers should program to take advantage of as many cores as possible, even if the chips are not yet readily available, Ghuloum writes. This requires a rethinking of core algorithms, or basic logic, to perform efficient calculations that take advantage of parallel computations a multi-core chip can provide.
The engineer says this early-start, "front-loading" approach would prove more expensive than a reactive approach at the beginning, but reap benefits in the long run, adding many developers find such advice unwelcome for that very reason. He finds it encouraging, however, that an increasing number of developers are coming to the conclusion that scaling up their levels of parallelism and enhancing long-term scalability is a key undertaking.
There is no timeline for when Intel hopes to have a prototype of a 1,000-core chip, but it has shown an 80-core chip this past February.