A Unified GPGPU API In Gallium3D?
Written by Michael Larabel in Mesa on 6 February 2008 at 12:37 PM EST. 3 Comments
Zack Rusin today has covered on his blog GPGPU and ultimately answers the question as to whether there will be a GPGPU API within the new Gallium3D architecture. GPGPU, or General Purpose computing on GPUs, has been a hot topic as of late with both NVIDIA and ATI/AMD having their own SDK/APIs and the latest graphics cards offering dozens of stream processors. NVIDIA's general purpose technology is CUDA (Compute Unified Device Architecture) while ATI's is called CTM (Close to Metal).

Zack explains though in this blog entry that Gallium3D is not the place for a unified Linux GPGPU API as this Tungsten Graphics architecture is too low-level. However, a unified GPGPU API could be written above Gallium3D using a state tracker. Zack adds that as Gallium3D now uses LLVM (Low Level Virtual Machine) for compiling and accelerating shaders, any programming language could be put on the GPU with "minimal effort."

For more on the Tungsten's Gallium3D architecture for graphics drivers, check out their Wiki page.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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