08 April 2010

Want some cores with that?

OK, so I’ve been starting to look at new hardware… new iron to run my life on.  I recently acquired a new Intel i7 Quad Core laptop for my mobile VM needs and am currently writing this article on my Asus Eee 1005HAB Netbook in flight to Boston, MA.  Unfortunately, my servers at home, including the one hosting this article, are aging fast and will be in need of upgrade within the next 12 months.
imageI have therefore started looking at hardware, specifically, server type hardware.  I’ve only just begun this process, but I ran across something so sweet, I just had to share.  Now I know it’s not in production yet and I know even if it was, I would certainly NOT be able to afford it, but that doesn’t mean I couldn’t put it on my Dream Hardware Wishlist!    Just imagine what you could do with a 100-core processor!  That’s right!  100-cores baby! 
A new upstart called Tilera has unveiled a series of 4 processors of which the Tile-Gx100 is the flagship.  There’s also the Tile-Gx64Tile-Gx36 (No, it’s not a typo.  I can’t quite figure out why 36 and not 32 cores either.  ) and Tile-Gx16.  Hey, maybe I’d be able to afford the baby in the family. 
The CPUs are built on 40nm technology and top out at 1.5 GHz, which may be a little low unless your OS and apps were specifically designed and written to take advantage of multiple cores, which is mostly not the case today. 
Nevertheless, it’s nice to dream.  And don’t worry, with mainstream octa-cores on our doorstop, mainstream centu-cores should only be about 6 years away from reality, according to Moore’s Law. 


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