Intel Is Making Some Progress With Compute Shaders
Written by Michael Larabel in Intel on 27 April 2015 at 09:06 AM EDT. 9 Comments
One of the big extensions of OpenGL 4.3 and also a requirement of OpenGL ES 3.1 is support for compute shaders. While the work isn't complete yet, Intel's open-source developers are making progress on GL_ARB_compute_shader support.

Compute shaders allow for arbitrary data to be computed that isn't necessarily raw graphics data. Compute shaders are one of the big additions to the OpenGL 4.3 specification and likely for Intel's purpose is focusing on it now so their open-source Intel Linux graphics driver is closer to reaching OpenGL ES 3.1 compliance. Aside from GL_ARB_compute_shader, still to be finished up for OpenGL ES 3.1 compliance is GL_ARB_arrays_of_arrays (it's been started for a while), GL_ARB_framebuffer_no_attachments, GL_ARB_shader_image_load_store, GL_ARB_shader_image_size, and GL_ARB_shader_storage_buffer_object. Work on most of these extensions have at least started. It's quite possible and likely we'll see Intel's open-source driver achieve OpenGL ES 3.1 compliance in 2015.

With regard to the compute shader work, Jordan Justen at Intel OTC has been leading that charge. On Friday he posted his latest 20 patches for basic compute shader program generation for the i965 DRI driver. These patches are in V2 form and currently being reviewed. On a semi-related note from Justen this weekend are new patches for barrier support within their DRI driver.

Hopefully we'll see the CS support get into shape soon along with the remaining OpenGL ES 3.1 extensions. Intel's likely after GLES 3.1 compliance on Linux for their forthcoming Cherry Trail hardware.
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