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Khronos Group unveils heterogeneous computing initiative

Posted on Wednesday, June 18 2008 @ 01:37:00 CEST by

The Khronos Group announced the Heterogeneous Computing Initiative to create open standards for programming heterogeneous data and task parallel computing across GPUs and CPUs:
The Khronos Group announced today the formation of a new Compute Working Group to create royalty-free, open standards for programming heterogeneous data and task parallel computing across GPUs and CPUs. The creation of this open standard is intended to enable and encourage diverse applications to leverage all available platform compute resources on a wide range of platforms. Initial participants in the working group include 3Dlabs, AMD, Apple, ARM, Codeplay, Ericsson, Freescale, Graphic Remedy, IBM, Imagination Technologies, Intel, Nokia, NVIDIA, Motorola, QNX, Qualcomm, Samsung, Seaweed, TI, and Umeå University. Any company is welcome to join the Khronos Group to participate in this and the other Khronos working groups that are creating an ecosystem of open standards for graphics and media authoring and acceleration.

The Compute Working Group will follow proven Khronos processes and invite member contributions as a basis for standardization efforts. Apple has proposed the Open Computing Language (OpenCL) specification to enable any application to tap into the vast gigaflops of GPU and CPU resources through an approachable C-based language. A widely available open-standard compute programming specification with high-performance, general computation support and robust numerics will complement existing solutions and further liberate GPU-based compute power from the realm of graphics-only applications and provide a multi-vendor, portable interface for coordinating all the many-core GPUs and multi-core CPUs within a system. Such capability will have broad applicability - including a central role in the Khronos API ecosystem by providing a powerful compute front-end to OpenGL and OpenGL ES, and a platform for accelerating tasks such as physics and image processing / recognition.

“The Compute Working Group potentially will be one of the most significant standardization efforts at Khronos. Highly-accelerated parallel computation across GPUs and CPUs is essential to many emerging rich consumer applications that will transform the computing experience of diverse users,” said Neil Trevett, president of the Khronos Group. “Significantly, this initiative is aimed at both desktop and embedded devices – the day when you will be able to hold a supercomputer in the palm of your hand is perhaps not so far away.”



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