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  #1  
Old 9th September 2017, 10:02 AM
antikythera Offline
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Cool How many cores?

Oracle Linux 7.4 (basically RHEL with a supposedly unbreakable kernel) has interesting system requirements information. We're talking mainframe territory here but imagine if your desktop had this kind of power. If the PC still exists in a few decades this is entirely possible.

Quote:
You can install Oracle Linux 7 on x86-64 systems with up to 2048 logical CPUs and 64 TB of memory. The theoretical upper limit is 5120 logical CPUs and 64 TB of memory, but Oracle has not tested this configuration. A minimum of 2 logical CPUs and 1 GB of memory per logical CPU is recommended. Although the minimum disk space required for installation is 1GB, a minimum of 5 GB is recommended.
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  #2  
Old 9th September 2017, 01:06 PM
tim8723 Offline
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Re: How many cores?

This is a big part of why they are putting down Sun.

Tim
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  #3  
Old 9th September 2017, 01:12 PM
ocratato Offline
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Re: How many cores?

Not sure we will get to 1024 cores any time soon - at least on a single chip.

The new AMD chip with 16 cores uses 14nm technology. The cutting edge currently is AFAIK 7nm, which would get you 64 cores (128 threads). It might be possible to double that again, but after that you hit some seriously awkward physical limits.

I also note that the AMD chip must be running close to what is possible with heat dissipation at 180W.

One possibility for increasing the core count includes stacking as they are doing with flash memory. This comes with some "interesting" heat dissipation problems.

Another option would be simplify the design of the cores. Do we really need 600 million transistors for a single CPU core? (The AMD chip has enough transistors for 35,000 80386 CPUs or over a million Z80's.)

Now that we are getting closer to the physical limits (and hence a lot more expensive) we may see some alternative architectures start to gain some traction. Things like distributing the processing out into the memory, which combined with technologies like the Intel/Micron crosspoint memory might redefine what a computer looks like.
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Old 9th September 2017, 02:12 PM
lsatenstein Offline
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Re: How many cores?

Hi Ocratato,

On the side... It 8:12am in Montreal, while you are 13 hours ahead at 9:12pm

I was thinking that for a future CPU we could use light and light sensors for internals.

We know that light travels at different speeds through vacuum, air, water, and other transparent materials.

If we find a way to engineer a miniature light-gate, I think we could have ultrarapid CPUs with very low energy dissipation.
As to the size of the chips, that is another story. Anyway, from nano seconds to picoseconds would certainly be a speed up.

And as for energy consumption, it would be for the logic gates, not for storage.. This (imaginary light-based) CPU would not need to be water cooled?
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Old 9th September 2017, 03:15 PM
ocratato Offline
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Re: How many cores?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lsatenstein View Post
Hi Ocratato,

On the side... It 8:12am in Montreal, while you are 13 hours ahead at 9:12pm

I was thinking that for a future CPU we could use light and light sensors for internals.

We know that light travels at different speeds through vacuum, air, water, and other transparent materials.

If we find a way to engineer a miniature light-gate, I think we could have ultrarapid CPUs with very low energy dissipation.
As to the size of the chips, that is another story. Anyway, from nano seconds to picoseconds would certainly be a speed up.

And as for energy consumption, it would be for the logic gates, not for storage.. This (imaginary light-based) CPU would not need to be water cooled?
You appear to be out by a couple of hours - your post was at 11:12 pm by my time.

One of the problems with using light is that unless you push up into hard ultraviolet the wavelengths are far far larger than the feature size in a modern chip - blue light is 400nm while chip technology is at 14nm. This tends to make the optical systems larger,and hence slower, than electronics.

There is, of course, an application for photonic switches in communications and there is a lot of interesting work happening there, just not for computing.
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