64 Cores. But Not A Skyscraper. A Neighborhood.
Piling on the cores is nothing new. Intel demonstrated an 80 core processor last year. But there's always been a problem. The computing power of multiple cores has been like a huge boat you built in your basement. You could go sailing, but it won't fit out the door. In multicore chips, the too-small door is getting on or off-chip access to memory through which all data must pass. Well, MIT spinoff Tilera is expected to present a 64 core processor at Stanford's "Hot Chips" symposium today, and instead of a skyscraper of cores stacked on top of a tiny lobby, it's laid out like a grid of city streets.
Intel, AMD and IBM, among others, will also be presenting papers at the symposium, but none are expected to have the impact of Tilera’s 64-core processor bombshell, part of which is that the processor is shipping now with a claimed offering of “10x the performance and 30x time performance-per-watt of the Intel dual-core Xeon, and 40x the performance of the leading Texas Instruments DSP”.
Tilera says that each core can run its own operating system, such as Linux, and will first be used in the “advanced networking and digital multimedia space” by at least a dozen customers including 3Com, Codian and GoBackTV.
"Tilera say that the TILE64 starts at US $435 each in units of 10,000, and will in the future be joined by 36-core and 120-core models." Want.