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Their *parallelism* is increasing, but where I live the speed increases
topped out four or five years back.
Sometimes performance is not the main factor
Posted Oct 22, 2009 11:02 UTC (Thu) by djcapelis (subscriber, #53964)
That said, I would agree in general that single-core performance is not indeed climbing as much as it used to be, but to say it's completely standing still probably goes too far.
Even the clock speeds on consumer chips may still have room to improve. IBM was surprised to see everyone stop at 3Ghz which is why they turned that crank one last time to hit 5Ghz in POWER. They mostly did it for marketing purposes, but in terms of long-term trends, they seem to feel that that's the place clockspeeds top out. Not where we are now.
That said, none of this refutes your point really, but perhaps provides some different color to it.
Posted Oct 22, 2009 16:43 UTC (Thu) by dlang (✭ supporter ✭, #313)
Posted Oct 23, 2009 0:11 UTC (Fri) by djcapelis (subscriber, #53964)
Even if the only thing they were doing was rolling back the P4's braindead design decisions, this would still be true.
That said, this isn't the only thing they're doing and the new Core microarchitectures are really quite an improvement over anything Intel's ever done before. I'm not thrilled with the original Core, but Core 2 on has been an improvement.
I'm not saying it's great, clearly Intel's never going to do cutting edge radical microarchitectures like Tilera, Sun or even IBM (from more radical to least) but you can't possibly claim their newer microarchitectures aren't an improvement that offer tangible benefits to single-core performance.
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