Thursday, February 19, 2004

Nvidia Talks Up PCI Express at IDF:: I love the progress of technology. By 2020 we should have computers which are as advanced, with respect the the number of FLOPs, as the human brain:

"The vast majority of the session was devoted to a crystal-ball gaze at what PC graphics' future might be. To begin with, Tamasi gave us a look at the specs of a typical high-end system from 1994. We had 100MHz CPUs, 100MB/sec bus speeds, 4MB of main RAM, half a gigabyte of hard disk space, and graphics cards that offered paltry 40 megapixels per second fill rates -- with no geometric processing and only 1-2MB of frame buffer memory. Contrast such a system with today's best and you can see that things have really progressed in ten years. In some areas, quite a bit faster than Moore's Law.

Tamasi extrapolated these trends a decade into the future, to illustrate what PCs and PC graphics cards would be capable of in 2014 (provided that technology continues to march apace): CPUs operating at 100GHz with 10 terabyte hard disks, 44GHz system RAM with bandwidth of 160GB/sec. Graphics cards will be able to handle 127 billion vertices and fill 270 billion pixels a second with over 3 terabytes a second of memory bandwidth and frame buffers of around 32 gigabytes. The computational power will be around 10 teraflops – enough to be ranked one of the top ten large-scale supercomputers by today's standards. This would be enough to render Shrek in pixel-perfect detail in real-time, with power to spare. Ten years may seem like a long way off, but when put in terms of technological evolution, we'll have amazing computing power on our desktops before we know it."

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