The Mac Gains a Multicore Ally
There's a huge debate raging about just how well XP and Vista exploit our new
generation of dual and multicore systems.
Critics argue that Vista does little to take advantage of additional cores.
And because most multicore systems run at slower clock-speeds, apps can actually
run more slowly. (Do you run dual or multicore desktops? If so, are they faster
than old-style single-cores? Let me know by writing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
While Microsoft says little about Vista's multicore support (after a week of
solid research, I still haven't gotten any clear answers and have found some
contradictory information on Microsoft.com), Apple is touting how Leopard was
designed for multicore. Leopard apparently has a multicore-optimized network
stack and a scheduler to distribute work across cores.
But perhaps the best way to exploit multicore is to write apps with multiprocessing
in mind. And here, perhaps, RapidMind can help. The company has a development
system where programmers define which parts of the software is to be multithreaded,
and then RapidMind automatically makes these components run against whatever
cores are available. Originally for Linux and Windows, RapidMind today is announcing
for the Mac.
Posted by Doug Barney on January 07, 2008 at 11:52 AM