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[THG] Nvidia's CUDA: The End of the CPU?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
This has got to be the best-written article I've ever come across on Tom's Hardware ('cause to be honest, most of them suck...). It's not a short article, but give it a read, it's definitely worth it!

Quote:
Let’s take a trip back in time – way back to 2003 when Intel and AMD became locked in a fierce struggle to offer increasingly powerful processors. In just a few years, clock speeds increased quickly as a result of that competition, especially with Intel’s release of its Pentium 4.

But the clock speed race would soon hit a wall. After riding the wave of sustained clock speed boosts (between 2001 and 2003 the Pentium 4’s clock speed doubled from 1.5 to 3 GHz), users now had to settle for improvements of a few measly megahertz that the chip makers managed to squeeze out (between 2003 and 2005 clock speeds only increased from 3 to 3.8 GHz). nvidia CUDAZoom

Even architectures optimized for high clock speeds, like the Prescott, ran afoul of the problem, and for good reason: This time the challenge wasn’t simply an industrial one. The chip makers had simply come up against the laws of physics. Some observers were even prophesying the end of Moore’s Law. But that was far from being the case. While its original meaning has often been misinterpreted, the real subject of Moore’s Law was the number of transistors on a given surface area of silicon. And for a long time, the increase in the number of transistors in a CPU are accompanied by a concomitant increase in performance – which no doubt explains the confusion. But then, the situation became complicated. CPU architects had come up against the law of diminishing returns: The number of transistors that had to be added to achieve a given gain in performance was becoming ever greater and was headed for a dead end.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/...-gpu,1954.html
    
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post #2 of 21
I hate titles like this.
You know, most people would see the benchmarks, and, lol ,they would say "GPU rules, CPUs are dead".

CUDA does NOT replace CPU, the only reason why is because it CAN'T, and it's hardly to believe it will ever do this. One of the reasons - x86 & AMD64/Intel64 are the most popular PC architectures, GPUs cannot support most of the instructions in these sets, just it's not in the GPU's nature to support them.
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post #3 of 21
Read this article early this morning (most of it anyways). I don't see CPUs or GPUs replacing the other, but I would expect that eventually they will be integrated together.
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post #4 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by metala View Post
I hate titles like this.
You know, most people would see the benchmarks, and, lol ,they would say "GPU rules, CPUs are dead".

CUDA does NOT replace CPU, the only reason why is because it CAN'T, and it's hardly to believe it will ever do this. One of the reasons - x86 & AMD64/Intel64 are the most popular PC architectures, GPUs cannot support most of the instructions in these sets, just it's not in the GPU's nature to support them.
The title is bad but the article doesn't claim the CPU is dying.

They're just changing, both of them, and converging.

In the 80's, PCs had 'floating point coprocessors'. We can laugh at that now. Maybe in 20 years they'll laugh at our 'graphics cards'.
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post #5 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by metala View Post
I hate titles like this.
You know, most people would see the benchmarks, and, lol ,they would say "GPU rules, CPUs are dead".

CUDA does NOT replace CPU, the only reason why is because it CAN'T, and it's hardly to believe it will ever do this. One of the reasons - x86 & AMD64/Intel64 are the most popular PC architectures, GPUs cannot support most of the instructions in these sets, just it's not in the GPU's nature to support them.
I'm with you. GPU's are excellent for parallel and/or floating point computation. Opening up GPU's for general code usage will allow the acceleration of many programs. Operating systems and most real world software, however, more or less do not benefit at all from this.
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post #6 of 21
It won't happen, at least not with current generation cards.
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post #7 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by metala View Post
I hate titles like this.
You know, most people would see the benchmarks, and, lol ,they would say "GPU rules, CPUs are dead".

CUDA does NOT replace CPU, the only reason why is because it CAN'T
thats a reason without any backing, generally used by human beings under the age of 7.
Quote:
, and it's hardly to believe it will ever do this. One of the reasons - x86 & AMD64/Intel64 are the most popular PC architectures
Physics is not subject to popular opinion. I could say PII's with MMX were popular in '98, so nothing will replace MMX.
Quote:
, GPUs cannot support most of the instructions in these sets, just it's not in the GPU's nature to support them.
so make a new instruction set. new instruction sets come with each new architecture so this is probably your worst attempt at argument.
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post #8 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Indian_Engineer View Post
thats a reason without any backing, generally used by human beings under the age of 7.
Physics is not subject to popular opinion. I could say PII's with MMX were popular in '98, so nothing will replace MMX. so make a new instruction set. new instruction sets come with each new architecture so this is probably your worst attempt at argument.
Wow - way to resort immediately to personal attacks.

And FYI - PII's run x86
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post #9 of 21
Thread Starter 
Well, if you read the article, they specifically say that a GPU WILL NEVER REPLACE a CPU due to the vast differences between the two architectures and requirements/uses--but hopefully we'll soon be taking advantage of GPU's in the near future to do more than just gaming (I know, in certain limited situations we can, but hopefully it'll be more universal in application)--with more software support, it shouldn't be too daunting of a task.
    
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post #10 of 21
Does CUDA sound like a code word for Vagina to anyone else?
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