IDF Day 2: Renee James: "Developing for the Future of Computing"
Just as the Pentium processor helped shepherd in multimedia on the PC, multi-core processors are opening the door further for HD and 3D worlds on computers. James stated that all of Intel's platforms will be multi-core by 2010.
As an example of the kind of real-world, immersive environment recent processor improvements are enabling, James showed a preview of Ubisoft's FarCry 2, which is due out this November. In addition to a completely interactive, immersive and realistic-looking world, the game uses the Havok engine for CPU-based physics. Another example of applications enabled by technological advances, is a solution from Philips Healthcare that captures nearly real-time 3D images of a beating heart. James claims that this non-invasive procedure represents a revolution in medical treatment.
What enables both of these highly computational solutions is that they benefit from the presence of additional cores and Hyper-Threading support, because both applications support parallel programming (both apps are threaded). To help developers port existing apps to multi-core as well as to write new applications that can also take advantage of multiple cores, yesterday Intel announced the Intel Parallel Studio--a comprehensive set of tools for multi-core software development. The software will be available in November as a beta. James also mentioned that the same toolset will be available for Larrabee and Visual Computing.
A few weeks ago, Intel announced a partnership with DreamWorks Animation SKG, where Intel would supply DreamWorks with an Intel-based infrastructure in order to render 3D animations quicker and at higher quality. Yesterday, Intel unveiled the name of DreamWorks' new 3D animation technology: InTru3D.