lkcl writes about his effort to go further than others have, and actually have a processor designed for Free Software manufactured: "A new
processor is being put together — one that is
contains no proprietary hardware engines, yet an 800MHz 8-core version would,
at 38 GFLOPS, be powerful enough on raw
performance figures to take on the 3ghz AMD Phenom II x4 940, the
3GHz Intel i7
920 and other respectable mid-range 100 Watt CPUs. The difference is: power
consumption in 40nm for an 8-core version would be under 3 watts. The core
design has been proven in 65nm, and is based on a hybrid approach, with its
general-purpose instruction set being designed from the ground up to help
accelerate 3D Graphics and Video Encode and Decode, an 8-core 800mhz
version would be capable of 1080p30 H.264 decode, and have peak 3D rates
of 320 million triangles/sec and a peak fill rate of 1600 million pixels/sec.
The unusual step in the processor world is being taken to solicit input
from the Free Software Community at large before going ahead with putting
the chip together. So have at it: if given carte blanche, what
interfaces and what
features would you like an FSF-Endorseable mass-volume processor to have?
(Please don't say 'DRM' or 'built-in spyware')."
There's some discussion on arm-netbook
. This is the guy behind the first EOMA-68 card
(currently nearing production). As a heads ups, we'll be interviewing him in a live style similarly to Woz (although intentionally this time) next Tuesday.