Intel Puts a Supercomputer in the Palm of Your Hand

Intel SignIntel’s figured out a way to put the processing power of a supercomputer into your hand.

Intel does this with a new chip, code-named Knights Corner. Knights Corner crams more than 50 general-purpose Pentium microprocessor cores onto a single chip. All by itself, Knights Corner can perform about 1 trillion mathematical calculations per second. In 1996, it took 72 cabinets of servers for ASCI Red to pull off the same feat.

ASCI Red was the supercomputer developed by Intel in the 90s, the first able to do 1 trillion calculations per second.

Knights Corner is a descendant of a GPU called Larrabee, which was shelved in 2009 and with it, Intel’s move to confront Nvidia in the realm of graphic architecture.

Or not. Knights Corner is part of the MIC architecture (many integrated cores), and should allow Intel’s products to leapfrog Nvidia’s. MIC uses a high degree of parallelism in smaller, lower-power, single-threaded performance processor cores. The result. says Intel,  is higher performance on highly parallel applications.

Intel says it’s targeting High Performance Computing, workstations, and data centers with its first MIC products.