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Tim Sweeney: GPGPU Software Uneconomical to Develop, GPUs Set to Disappear
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Old 14th August 2009, 14:45   #1
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Default Tim Sweeney: GPGPU Software Uneconomical to Develop, GPUs Set to Disappear

Tim Sweeney, chief executive officer of Epic Games, said during his keynote at High Performance Graphics 2009 conference earlier this month that it is dramatically more expensive to develop software that relies on general purpose computing on graphics processing units (GPGPU) than to create a program that utilizes central processing units. He also re-iterated his earlier claims that the days of GPUs are counted.

It is not a secret that peak performance of hardware is increasing very fast these days. However, in order to utilize the additional performance and feature-set, developers of software, namely video games, have to increase development time and budgets. Although the market of video games has been growing rather rapidly in the recent years, game budgets have not been increasing that rapidly. Mr. Sweeney claims that although performance increase may be 20 times, game budgets will only increase less than two times. As a result, it is vital for game developers to take advantage of the modern hardware capabilities and performance at the lowest possible cost.

http://www.xbitlabs.com/news/video/d...Disappear.html
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Old 14th August 2009, 14:50   #2
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Quote:
it is dramatically more expensive to develop software that relies on general purpose computing on graphics processing units (GPGPU) than to create a program that utilizes central processing units.
of course, also the reason why we have X86 based CPUs now, and not RISC computers are those with a fixed instruction set. Also the reason why it's harder to develop games for PS3 which make the most of the system; when you are limited in flexibility for programming, you have an increased overhead to make sure your code will work on the hardware provided; if you have a general purpose CPU which will run your code, less efficiently, but still run it nonetheless, the choice is often to go for a slightly less detailed game/gameplay and reduce development time. because time = money. ID Software shares this same train of thought, as do many other developers.

Current GPUs are basically RISC CPUs optimized for a specific set of tasks; Tim's right that if they can make a general purpose unit where you can run programs on without having to adhere to a predefined ruleset, that unit will most likely be a favorite among developers

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In the next generation we’ll write 100% of our rendering code in a real programming language – not DirectX, not OpenGL, but a language like C++ or CUDA. A real programming language unconstrained by weird API restrictions.
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