How General-Purpose can a GPU be?

Philip Machanick


The use of graphics processing units (GPUs) in general-purpose computation (GPGPU) is a growing field. GPU instruction sets, while implementing a graphics pipeline, draw from a range of single instruction multiple datastream (SIMD) architectures characteristic of the heyday of supercomputers. Yet only one of these SIMD instruction sets has been of application on a wide enough range of problems to survive the era when the full range of supercomputer design variants was being explored: vector instructions.

This paper proposes a reconceptualization of the GPU as a multicore design with minimal exotic modes of parallelism so as to make GPGPU truly general.


GPGPU; multicore designs; graphics pipeline

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Copyright (c) 2015 Philip Machanick

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