NVIDIA seems to just love this slide; they’ve used it in a truckload of presentations since Analyst Day 2008, and in fact it’s likely just a revision of an earlier slide. So we’ll be nice guys and show it here too in order to start this part of the article:

While that does give you an impression of the kind of disruptive improvement they claim to deliver, there’s now a much more accessible and interesting way to get a feel for it. NVIDIA recently launched a new version of its CUDA Zone website with an attractive flash interface and a long list of publicly announced applications in a wide variety of fields. Whenever possible, links to the source code/academic paper/company website/etc. are also made available.

One thing that’s a bit annoying is that the performance improvements are as measured by the application developer; so some might be compared to a single 2Ghz Conroe core, while others might test with a quad-core 3GHz Penryn. It would be nice if NVIDIA listed the test setup on CUDA Zone, but ah well, one thing at a time…