Future iPhones to wield OpenCL acceleration

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  • Reply 21 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post


    It means "does not equal" that tripped me up a couple of years ago as well.



    Hmm, thinking about it, I feel like we used "!=" in programming class (though I don't believe it was real code). Most people just use "=/=" but oh well.
  • Reply 22 of 72
    ronboronbo Posts: 669member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wobegon View Post


    and I still have no idea what "!=" means.



    ! means "not", and != means "not equal". (many languages use this, not just C and Obj-C)
  • Reply 23 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Ronbo View Post


    ! means "not", and != means "not equal". (many languages use this, not just C and Obj-C)



    Ah, so it is part of programming. Well in that case, I disagree apfel. I'd say it's more like this:



    Windows-OpenGL ~ Linux-OpenGL ~ Mac-OpenGL. And Nvidia-OpenGL ~ AMD-OpenGL



    They're not equal, no, but similar.
  • Reply 24 of 72
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,797member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by apfel View Post


    OpenGL Windows != OpenGL Linux != OpenGL Mac != "OpenGL" PS3 != ...



    Extensions from NVidia != ATI != PS3 , ...



    I heard that the Differences can be that big, that sometimes it is maybe easier to port a Game from Direct X to OpenGL than from one OpenGL to another OpenGL! OpenGL is full of proprietary extensions from the GPUs, if you want to use a modern feature set. Apple is going again in a special way.



    There is no "that" OpenGL.



    And the good Games on the PS3 don't use "OpenGL"/PSGL, from the things I heard.



    Some examples?
  • Reply 25 of 72
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,797member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    That's assuming that OpenCL can be used to deliver what OpenGL lacks vs DirectX.



    Eventually I can see this being the case. Post-production graphics are mainly rendered on the CPU. With generic multi-threaded rendering like that in parallel on GPUs, OpenCL will deliver real-time photo-realism eventually and you don't need any better than that.



    OpenCL doesn't look very easy to develop with compared to DirectX and OpenGL code though. It's specialized code and it's not something developers will be able to hit the ground running with.



    I can't see a huge switchover in the short-term. Microsoft is a pretty big player when to comes to video games. They won't just roll over and let OpenGL + OpenCL take away their exclusivity and developers won't rush to modify their millions of lines of code game engines that are rooted in DirectX either.



    The whole point to OpenCL is to make the programming easier, so I don't know why it would be harder. It takes more load off the programmer than does DirectX and other programming models, all of which, by the way, are specialized code.



    The only reason why DirectX seems to be easier to program for, is because it comes from MS, and MS has most of the computers out there using their own, proprietary, specialized OS's. Otherwise, it's no easier than anything else.
  • Reply 26 of 72
    boogabooga Posts: 1,078member
    apfel and other critics of this article are perhaps a bit inflammatory in their responses, but have good points. OpenGL's core features aren't very extensive, and no game is published without extensive use of the OpenGL extensions. Many of these extensions are specific to certain cards, platforms, or implementations.



    DirectX, on the other hand, doesn't have as extensive an extension model, but because it's limited to Microsoft-developed systems doesn't really need it. The big incompatibility with DirectX is between 9 and 10, but 9 is already pretty powerful. Being able to target Windows (90% of computers) and the XBox360 (a top-tier 3G console) with DirectX has given it huge legs. If Microsoft supports DirectX on a handheld it would be a serious competitor.



    That, combined with the fact that Android is as close to desktop linux as the iPhone is to desktop MacOS makes this piece more than a little fluff and wishful thinking. Yes, Apple seems to have a pretty reasonable strategy. So does their competitor. No one is switching in droves from DirectX to OpenGL or back. It's currently a wait-and-see situation.
  • Reply 27 of 72
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,797member
    Another thing here to note is that Apple also has Grand Central, which , as far as I know, they are not giving out to others. Correct me if I'm wrong on that.



    With both Intel, and I believe ARM, eventually having dual core processors for this handheld market, that will give Apple an additional boost that others won't have for some time.



    The two technologies will supposedly both be available in 10.6, which will be the basis of Apple's later mobile OS.



    I think we have to look at ALL the parts of the puzzle before deciding on just how important any one part is by itself.
  • Reply 28 of 72
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,797member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Booga View Post


    apfel and other critics of this article are perhaps a bit inflammatory in their responses, but have good points. OpenGL's core features aren't very extensive, and no game is published without extensive use of the OpenGL extensions. Many of these extensions are specific to certain cards, platforms, or implementations.



    DirectX, on the other hand, doesn't have as extensive an extension model, but because it's limited to Microsoft-developed systems doesn't really need it. The big incompatibility with DirectX is between 9 and 10, but 9 is already pretty powerful. Being able to target Windows (90% of computers) and the XBox360 (a top-tier 3G console) with DirectX has given it huge legs. If Microsoft supports DirectX on a handheld it would be a serious competitor.



    That, combined with the fact that Android is as close to desktop linux as the iPhone is to desktop MacOS makes this piece more than a little fluff and wishful thinking. Yes, Apple seems to have a pretty reasonable strategy. So does their competitor. No one is switching in droves from DirectX to OpenGL or back. It's currently a wait-and-see situation.



    While you're right about the current situation, I'm not so sure that it carries over to the future as well as you might think.



    If MS supports DirectX for a handheld, THEIR handheld, what will that mean?



    We can all agree that Win Mobile, in ver 6, and in the upcoming 7, sometime in late 2009, is no direct competitor to either the iPhone OS, or Adroid, or even the other less polished and standardized Linux based phone distros.



    How well MS's phone will do depends on far more than whether it uses DirectX or something else. That's just part of the much larger package.



    It's something like the iPod/Zune thing. The Zune isn't inferior in any major way to the iPod, but it hasn't gained traction. It's the overall comparisons that make the difference.



    Don't forget that for phones, and other small devices with small, low rez (when compared to desktops and consoles) screens, the graphics components have less to do. much of the complexity of the graphics environment simply can't be seen on these small screens.



    That means that it will be several years before many of these extensions will become of major importance for them. This is even true for notebooks for the next couple of years.



    This will give Apple, and others, plenty of time to do what they need to to "catch-up" in that area.



    If Apple can sell (and the recession will affect EVERYONE's sales) 20 million phones in 2009, and 30 million the next year, Apple will have a lot of devices, when including the surprisingly popular iTouch, using this hardware and software technology. If others also come on that bandwagon, MS will have a lot of catching up to do.



    When I use programs such as Moonlight Mahjong on my phone, the way the graphics acceleration allows me to manipulate the tiles is already amazing. I can;t wait for this new stuff to arrive, hopefully at the ADC next year.
  • Reply 29 of 72
    pxtpxt Posts: 683member
    deleted
  • Reply 30 of 72
    Imagination authored OpenCL.
  • Reply 31 of 72
    pxtpxt Posts: 683member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wobegon View Post


    Netbooks are junk and since netbook sales have not shown to be eating into Apple's premium, full-size laptop sales, but rather into cheap, junky, sub-$1000 full-size PC laptops, Apple has no real motivation to compete there.



    ...




    I seems to me that the reason that netbooks are junk and do not compete much with Apple is that they have been defined lazily, by manufacturers that don't innovate, as cut-down laptops. I think this space is ripe for someone to come in and redefine it.



    My own idea would be that netbooks should cut back on processing power (start with iPhone & boost up, rather than laptop & cut down) and port connections (possibly none!) and have high wireless connectivity, possibly making up for processing and data shortfall using servers at Apple as part of a subscription service ( use apps when you need them only ) or built-in optimized back-to-my-mac. Hence 'net' book.



    The format would then be 10", fullsize ascii keys, thin as MB Air, super-light, fits in woman's handbag.
  • Reply 32 of 72
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 12,860member
    1.

    Upon reading this thread there seems to be a lot of arguing about the competition with Direct X. It is a waste of time guys. Apple already has, through iPhone and IPod Touch, enough hardware in the field to sustain app developers! Mobile OS is already a viable platform for developers to target and be profitable on.



    2.

    If the volume numbers become large enough developers will tend to target that subset of OpenGL that is supported by Apple. This will tend to focus developers on that code that Apple supports directly.



    3.

    OpenCL is about using GPUs for more "general purpose computing" and is only an advantage for certain types of code that can exploit the GPU hardware - when that hardware is available! Since we really don't know what will be exploitable in the new GPUs it is difficult to say how big the payoff will be on anyone device. These are mobile devices however so I don't expect a lot of free GPU cycles while running graphics code. I quoted "general purpose computing" above for a reason, mainly because it is misleading though often used. The problem is that GPUs are only good at accelerating a subset of what would be considered general purpose code.



    4.

    Apples deal with ARM and the PowerVR people is very interesting to say the least, however I don't see where this will lead to the huge advantages that management at Apple has whispered about. So I believe there has to be some Apple IP going into one or both of these cores. The problem of course is that the cores are available to others, so how will Apple pull ahead like they have made allusions to? In my mind the answer is a co processor or two optimized by Apple to help with the acceleration of Objective C and OpenCL code on the SoC Apple is building. How would this be done?



    Well honestly I'm not sure what they can do for Obj C but there are multiple possibilities for OpenCL. One possibility is that they borrow an idea from Cell and create a custom vector processing unit. This could be tied in or closely coupled with the GPU. The idea here is to have an engine that can run computationally intensive code on it's own decoupled from what the GPU is doing. Another option Apple has that while not exactly OpenCL oriented is to replace ARMs vector unit with one of Apples own design. A third option would be for Apple to simply implement a custom PowerVR core that has more execution resources than the publically available chips. In any event I'm just grasping at straws here trying to lay my finger on what might cause Apple to be so bullish with the direction they are taking.



    5.

    Sure the PowerVR crowd is highering OpenCL engineers but for what might ask. This shouldn't be taken as an indication that the current IPhone has an OpenCL compliant GPU. I don't know but I think it is another case of jumping the gun as there has been no indication that the GPU is capable of OpenCL acceleration. If somebody has facts that indicate otherwise please speak up, but right now I don't see justification for current IPhone users to get excited.



    6.

    People have gotten excited about the prospect of back ground applications. Sorry folks but as has been pointed out GPU acceleration really isn't that general. This is from somebody that dearly wants to see background or multi processing on the iPhone. I think part of this defect ( that is what the lack of back ground apps is) is related to management stubborness at Apple and maybe part is a wait for dual core and better ARM cores. There might also be a component in there related to the OS and user environment simply not being ready for it. In any event OpenCL won't suddenly make the iPhone a that much faster. Much of the code on the platform will never hit the GPU.



    7.

    All of this info coming to light all of a sudden should be a clear sign that the next few weeks will be very interesting in Apple land. I'd expect that just like last year every week in Januarary and Feburary will offer up new products from Apple. In fact I'm a little more bullish on a Tablet at MWSF with the update releases of iMac and Nano offered up in the following weeks.



    8.

    Number seven above was my optimistic side speaking! The lack of solid rumors or leaks has me thinking the worst though. Apple might throw us a couple of bones at MWSF and the be quite till spring. I don't know which side to believe right now





    Dave
  • Reply 33 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post


    All of this info coming to light all of a sudden should be a clear sign that the next few weeks will be very interesting in Apple land. I'd expect that just like last year every week in Januarary and Feburary will offer up new products from Apple. In fact I'm a little more bullish on a Tablet at MWSF with the update releases of iMac and Nano offered up in the following weeks.



    My thought is that they already have enough on the table to talk about at MWSF and that the tablet will be introduced later in the year. One of the drivers of this way of thinking is that the tablet will be a really really big deal (IMO), and possibly the last really different new product for a while in that it will basically flesh out and somewhat finalise the new platform Apple is developing.



    I don't think Steve will want to bow out of that announcement so I'm thinking that the tablet will not be announced or demoed by Phil at MWSF. Unless Phil's "one more thing" is Steve Jobs sprinting onto the stage to show off the new device, it probably won't happen. Giving Phil a shot at a keynote is one thing, letting him introduce one of the most revolutionary products of the age (yeah, a bit of hyperbole) is not on IMO.
  • Reply 34 of 72
    ajmasajmas Posts: 557member
    Apfel: Arguing why OpenGL is better or worse that DirectX only makes sense if you are arguing solutions for MS-Windows. Beyond MS-Windows OpenGL is the only cross-platform graphics library out there. I can't see Microsoft trying to license DirectX, since it would be against its whole approach to platform lock-in.



    OpenGL is not perfect, and trying to unify some of the vendor propriety extensions would be a great thing to do. I am not an OpenGL expert, so I can't say whether there has been any move to do this already? Microsoft doesn't need to deal with extensions, since it has one big vendor specific solution, but in doing so no one else has any say.



    BTW Does anyone know whether there are any graphics card, that allow for OpenGL 3.0 on MacOS X?
  • Reply 35 of 72
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by PXT View Post


    I seems to me that the reason that netbooks are junk and do not compete much with Apple is that they have been defined lazily, by manufacturers that don't innovate, as cut-down laptops. I think this space is ripe for someone to come in and redefine it.



    The incumbent manufacturers didn't define what a netbook was. They didn't invent the category either. They tried to avoid making them because that would push down the prices even more, they wanted people to buy $600 notebooks even if they didn't need what it offered, when a $300 did what they needed it to do. The incumbents did seem to ignore one of the reasons for the 'net' part of the name, the first one was designed to be part of a wireless mesh of them where students can have a local "cloud" of resources.



    I'm not sure why people consider them to be junk, the people that I know that have them seem to really like them, many of them are people that I had tended to think of as demanding users.



    Quote:

    My own idea would be that netbooks should cut back on processing power (start with iPhone & boost up, rather than laptop & cut down) and port connections (possibly none!) and have high wireless connectivity, possibly making up for processing and data shortfall using servers at Apple as part of a subscription service ( use apps when you need them only ) or built-in optimized back-to-my-mac. Hence 'net' book.



    The format would then be 10", fullsize ascii keys, thin as MB Air, super-light, fits in woman's handbag.



    Except for the size and processor, it sounds a lot like an Air.
  • Reply 36 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by apfel View Post


    The "facts" in your article about OpenGL are wong. What your are writing is maybe true in theory but thats just all.

    Take a look at the official Subset. If you want modern features you have to take the Extensions from Nvidia or ATI.



    Windows-OpenGL != Linux-OpenGL != Mac-OpenGL. And Nvidia-OpenGL != AMD-OpenGL



    e.g. NVIDIA Hardware und OpenGL problems

    http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boa...614#Post246614

    http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boa...267#Post246267

    http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boa...075#Post245075

    http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boa...629#Post242629

    http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boa...472#Post241472

    http://www.opengl.org/discussion_boa...209#Post246209



    OpenGL3 is a joke. Big promisses but nearly "nothing" happened. At the end also Carmack (one of the big supporters) was pissed about OpenGL3. DirectX is much better for the programmer.





    The PS3 is able to use PSGL. PSGL is a specified Version from OpenGL ES. But PSGL is just an option for the ps3. There are also so much extensions, that where remains nearly nothing from "to be independent from the hardware". No one who understand something from coding on the ps3 will use PSGL.

    The Nintendo Wii is using a Custom API. Some of the Concepts of OpenGL are simliar.



    I don't give two s**** what John Carmack says.



    OpenGL 3.0 was critical and OpenGL 3.1 will hit the mark with Carmack finding some future wishlist item [never meant for 3.1] to bitch about; and then some.
  • Reply 37 of 72
    http://techon.nikkeibp.co.jp/english/NE/2008/1215.html



    Quote:

    Apple-Led OpenCL Brings More Freedom to Processors



    In June 2008, Apple Inc. made news by unexpectedly announcing adoption of OpenCL for its next-generation OS. The entire picture of this strategy is now becoming clear. This is the direct response of a processor manufacturer to the impending risk that its current approach would lead to software developers leaving its platform. Multi-core computers are becoming more popular, GPUs are handling more than just graphics, and many processors with new architecture are emerging. OpenCL, which emerged in an era of processor chaos, is about to give software developers and equipment manufacturers the freedom to choose processors.



  • Reply 38 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ajmas View Post


    OpenGL is the only cross-platform graphics library out there.



    Yes and that is a good thing. But a lot of this is just theory, especially if you are using modern features there doesn't remain a lot of cross-platform. You have to use the extensions - and they different. And OpenGL in OSX is a special thing.

    Linux and Windows cross-platform is working "OK". But OSX is another thing. Apple has implemented his own OpenGL Runtime. The IHVs are offering only the drivers (this is the modell microsoft is using). But the problem is, that this runtime likes to work a little bit different from the IHV implementation under Windows and Linux.



    So in practice there remains not a lot of the cross-platform features in the sense, that you have OpenGL-Code that will work in the same way on different plattforms.



    I don't know what will happen with OpenGL 3.1 and how much time it will take but I wouldn't expect to much. Maybe they are taking the geometry shader in the core. But I don't think that we will see the new Object Modell.



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sddv3d-w5p4
  • Reply 39 of 72
    The mobile Devices are using OpenGL ES. There they did the Cleanup. Everyone hoped that they make also the Cleanup in OpenGL3, but it didn't happen how I wrote more than one times. So OpenGL and OpenGL ES are not any more identical. It can easily happen that you have to rewrite your Code.



    PS3:

    The PS3 has its own native API. There is something like an OpenGL ES Wrapper, but there are so many extensions that there is no compatibility. This implementation is so slow, that no one is taking it. You take the native API.



    Wii:

    So from the things I heard (but I am not sure), the Wii also doesn't use OpenGL. The Wii is using its own API, but there are many similarities to OpenGL.
  • Reply 40 of 72
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by PXT View Post


    I seems to me that the reason that netbooks are junk and do not compete much with Apple is that they have been defined lazily, by manufacturers that don't innovate, as cut-down laptops. I think this space is ripe for someone to come in and redefine it.



    My own idea would be that netbooks should cut back on processing power (start with iPhone & boost up, rather than laptop & cut down) and port connections (possibly none!) and have high wireless connectivity, possibly making up for processing and data shortfall using servers at Apple as part of a subscription service ( use apps when you need them only ) or built-in optimized back-to-my-mac. Hence 'net' book.



    The format would then be 10", fullsize ascii keys, thin as MB Air, super-light, fits in woman's handbag.



    But see, you've just brought up Apple's major competitor to netbooks that's already in existence and FAR more popular than netbooks - the iPhone/iPod touch mobile WiFi platform. If all you're gonna do is surf the web, check and write emails, IM, and listen to some music, the iPhone does all that and more and almost more importantly it does all that and more well. Fast boot up, zippy performance, decent storage space.



    Meanwhile, it seems a netbook just feels like a neutered laptop that boots slow, has overall poor performance or uses solid-state storage to increase zippiness...but then lacks decent storage (as in, less than some iPhones ship with) because they can't afford to put in a more expensive, higher capacity SSD. Then again, many full-size PC laptops are also trying to compete around that $500-$700 netbook price range and it turns out...people are simply preferring the more portable of the two - the netbook. Of course, nearly a quarter of netbooks bought in the US are returned, probably (imo) because buyers realize just how underpowered their netbook is, in addition to all the other poor compromises made, notably micro, carpal tunnel-inducing keyboards and claustrophobic, migrane-inducing little screens (generally low res too, which, even though these screens are small, give a fuzzy haze over everything).



    If Apple had wanted to jump into the profitless netbook market, they would have had to make the same compromises OR avoid those compromises and make an ultraportable, yet not neutered nor toy-sized laptop at a higher price...which they did, it's called the MacBook Air. In addition, they have the far more popular, far more mobile, far more enjoyable to use iPhone/iPod touch platform that doesn't cannibalize their profitable laptops.
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