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NVIDIA ports its CUDA GPU-programming architecture to x86 NVIDIA ports its CUDA GPU-programming architecture to x86
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NVIDIA ports its CUDA GPU-programming architecture to x86
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Old 23rd September 2010, 12:32   #1
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Default NVIDIA ports its CUDA GPU-programming architecture to x86

In a move that shouldn't be that surprising, NVIDIA has announced that its popular CUDA platform is being ported to x86. The obvious angle here is that this will give NVIDIA a weapon against OpenCL and DirectCompute in the high-performance computing (HPC) market, but the situation is probably more complicated than that. First, let's look at what CUDA is and how it became popular, and then we'll look at where it's going.

In a nutshell, NVIDIA's CUDA architecture provides developers with a way to efficiently program NVIDIA GPUs using a very easy-to-read, C-like syntax. Since its launch in 2007, CUDA has become incredibly popular for a wide spectrum of supercomputing applications, from finance to oil and gas. The reason that CUDA ended up as the de facto way to write GPGPU applications is straightforward: it was first. NVIDIA took the idea of pitching GPUs to the HPC market much more seriously than AMD, and the company was very aggressive about improving CUDA and pitching it to developers. The end result is an architecture and software stack that is mature and developer-friendly, both of which go a long way in the HPC world.

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