IDF: Intel closer to graphics card production
It's been known for a short while that Intel is planning to make a graphic chip using the IA32 architecture. Intel has yet to announce many details at IDF, but Pat Gelsinger confirmed in an interview that the first Larrabee products would arrive as graphics cards and not as graphic cores, integrated into Nehalem. The first prototypes will appear this year.
Intel will not make these cards itself, but will leave the production to other firms, as do AMD and nVidia. Gelsinger added that the cards with Larrabee-1 chips were initially intended for gaming PCs and workstations, but servers that handle scientific calculations, like nVidia Tesla systems, were not inconceivable.
The first drivers and development tools would be for DirectX – Gelsinger did not say which version – and OpenGL. Implementation on the IA32 architecture with many parallel cores would be done by the driver. But Intel will also be offering a whole range of programming tools. Gelsinger also reaffirmed that Larrabee will be part of IA32 not just on paper: the entire programming model is adhered to, including memory management and interrupt handling, as well as ordering.
Larrabee chips will be Intel's first commercially available, many-core processors. The chips in the Terascale Program that have so far been shown, were only development samples.
More on IDF in Shanghai 2008:
- IDF: More details on the Diamondville 4W processor
- IDF: Intel say's Moore's Law holds until 2029
- IDF: Intel's atomic era
- Intel developer forum: Shanghai showcase
- IDF: Portable devices steal the show