[Beowulf] Vector coprocessors
landman at scalableinformatics.com
Thu Mar 16 09:54:39 PST 2006
Daniel Pfenniger wrote:
>> You need "really big" volumes to get there.
> Yes, but it does not seem to me unreasonable to put such a card in
> millions of PC's if the average applications run a bit faster and the
> cost increase stays below the PC cost. After all
> the 8087 math coprocessor of the i386 era did just that.
I agree that it makes sense to put such a card into millions of PCs.
Not at $8000/card. The issue is that the C600 costs quite a bit itself
as it is not being produced in volumes that can drive enough economies
of scale (yet). So the basic part will be a few k$. The card cost will
be (relatively speaking) low.
I think (WAG here) that Clearspeed wants people to design a socket onto
motherboards for them. Lowers the costs all around.
>> I would say that there is more potential for a clever soul to
>> reprogram the guts of Matlab, etc., to transparently share the work
>> across multiple machines. I think that's in the back of the mind of
>> MS, as they move toward a services environment and .NET
> Lots of people have thought about that for a long time, including
> Cleve Moeller. The potential clever soul should be well above
> average, and considering MS products, well above MS average programmer.
> An intriguing way to parallelize C with threads on multicore processors is
> provided by Cilk (http://supertech.lcs.mit.edu/cilk/). Cilk consists of
> a couple of simple extensions to the C language.
> If anyone has experience with Cilk it would be nice to share.
The only problem with extensions to any language is that you get a
hideously low adoption rate. You could use UPC. Or Cilk, or ...
(insert your favorite extension here). Only a small (miniscule)
fraction of people will use it, regardless of its technical merits.
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Joseph Landman, Ph.D
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