Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Yes, but is it quiet?

Self-wiring supercomputer is cool and compact

Actually, it's much more than just cool (i.e., energy saving) and compact (i.e., well, you know, smaller.) These guys have developed Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) chips. FPGA chips have logic gates that can be programed into different, specialized, kinds of circuits. So (if I get this right) you can have the programming work done at the circuit level because you can reconfigure the circuits as necessary. What I don't understand is, if this can be done on the fly.

The trick is that, to program the computer, you have to know more than just the language. You'll have to have a more detailed, more complex understanding of the hardware.

These are big deals for supercomputers right now but, think about how this could develop when the technology works its way down to consumer level.

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