Skip to Main Content
The digital revolution, far from abating, continues with even greater intensity in new applications in health, media, social networking, and many other areas of our lives. These applications will require revolutionary improvements in speed and capacity in future microprocessors so that they can process terabytes of information with teraflops of terascale computing power. Tera is not an exaggeration: trillions of hertz and trillions of bytes will be needed. In a terascale world, there will be new processing capabilities for mining and interpreting the world's growing mountain of data, and for doing so with even greater efficiency. Examples of applications are artificial intelligence in smart cars and appliances and virtual reality for modeling, visualization, physics simulation, and medical training. Many other applications are still on the edge of science fiction. In these applications, massive amounts of data must be processed. Three-dimensional (3-D) images in connected visual computing applications like virtual worlds can include hundreds of hours of video, thousands of documents, and tens of thousands of digital photos that require indexing and searching. Terascale computing refers to this massive processing capability with the right mix of memory and input/output (I/O) capabilities for use in everyday devices, from servers to desktops to laptops.