Or even reversing the trend?: This EE Times opinion piece by Jeff Bier and Jennifer White of Berkeley Design Technology points to a possible trend reversal spurred by emerging multicore technology, that of the convergence of digital signal processors (becoming more CPU-like) and general-purpose processors (integrating more DSP performance). The authors illuminate such factors as:
- Non-DSP-specialist embedded processor developers see multicore as homogeneous symmetric multiprocessor (SMP) chips that integrate CPU cores.
- DSP-specialist embedded processor developers see it as a "massively parallel" architecture with hundreds of cores and heterogeneous assortments of cores.
- GPP applications tend to be diverse and somewhat unpredictable in character.
- DSP applications are well-characterized ahead of time.
- These two views of multicore differ, making different architectural trade-offs and supporting different programming models.
Originally, these types of views caused the divergeance of the two types of processors and multicore may make history repeat itself.