The raw power of game consoles

There is an article on tgdaily about the floating-point speed of a number of game consoles for the sake of a raw numbers comparison. They chose to report on the FLOPs each processor can put out, at peak (that would be 'floating operations per second') which is an industry standard measurement for the speed of CPUs in general.

Of course, CPUs for PCs are not frequently measured in FLOPs -- its normally a benchmark associated with raw horsepower type computers like mainframes and supercomputers. The Top 500 Supercomputers list measures performance in FLOPs (actually, giga and tera FLOPs) of the world's fastest computers.

More thoughts coming ...

My comment from that page for those who don't want to sift through and find it:

To those who claim this article is biased somehow, you obviously don't understand benchmarking. The whole purpose of the FLOP measurement is the ability to compare different CPU architectures in a meaningful way.

FLOPs are a measurement of performance that does not necessarily reflect how appropriate a given platform is for your software however. The Cell processor in the PS3 is much faster doing Folding@Home calculations than a regular Intel or AMD CPU for example, but isn't well designed for other workloads.

And to the SPU haters, SPUs are FULL processors. Look at their specifications. Their only meaningful limitation is how much memory access they have at any given point in time (without making DMA calls to fetch other data to process).

They are not comparable to FPUs at all.



I love a good puzzle game. I buy those little metal Chinese puzzles whenever possible. My wife is still bitter from the first such 3D puzzle she bought me that I solved in an hour or so. Its just a function of how my brain works, and I really enjoy exercising it. As such, I'm very excited about tonight's release of Echochrome in North America on the PSN (on the Sony Playstation Network Store). Its a very cool 3D puzzle game based lightly on the work of Escher.

You basically have control of a 3D view of a simple line-drawn environment with one or more little figures walking around in essentially straight lines on it. There are obstacles and jumping pads and holes in the floor and gaps to cross, all without any direct control of the characters. The really interesting part is that the rotating of the image such that a path looks connected (because the gap is hidden by another piece of the foreground) causes th path to be connected, at least until you rotate it again. The same goes for hiding obstacles or for how jumping and falling work.

Tell you what, try Youtube for a video of it instead, it'll make much more sense.

Now you get it? A little maybe? Very cool, don't you think? Now here's the really cool part -- you can create your own levels in the game, then either share them with friends or upload them directly back to the game makers and let them possibly include your creation(s) in future (free) updates to the game. Check out the official blog entry for more information.