Ron Wilson, Editor-in-Chief, Altera Corporation
Just as you were getting used to the idea of multicore processors in systems on chips (SoCs), the world is changing again. As several presentations at August’s Hot Chips Conference make clear, multicore is becoming many-core: the number of processor cores closely coupled at the hearts of SoCs is rising from 2 or 4 to 8, 16, or many, many more.
Is this increase just another step in the march of Moore’s law, essentially transparent to system developers? Or is the evolution from multicore to many-core a change in kind, not merely a change in scale? Will this transition change the problems faced by system developers?
To find out, we spoke with some of the teams that have already built up design experience with many-core SoCs. We asked them a simple question: is the experience different from using multicore? To our simple question, we received a remarkably complicated answer.
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