Slyck.com
 
Slyck Chatbox - And More

Hardware Hackers Create A Modular Motherboard

What's happening in the world of technology related to hardware. Please submit stories for this forum here.
Forum rules
PLEASE READ BEFORE POSTING: Slyck Forum Rules

Hardware Hackers Create A Modular Motherboard

Postby sunnyd » Wed Aug 19, 2009 2:17 pm

Story : http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2009/08/modular-motherboard/

An ambitious group of hardware hackers have taken the fundamental building blocks of computing and turned them inside out in an attempt to make PCs significantly more efficient.

The group has created a motherboard prototype that uses separate modules, each of which has its own processor, memory and storage. Each square cell in this design serves as a mini-motherboard and network node; the cells can allocate power and decide to accept or reject incoming transmissions and programs independently. Together, they form a networked cluster with significantly greater power than the individual modules.

The design, called the Illuminato X Machina, is vastly different from the separate processor,memory and storage components that govern the design of computers today.

“We are taking everything that goes into motherboard now and chopping it up,” says David Ackley,associate professor of computer science at the University of New Mexico and one of the contributors to the project. “We have a CPU, RAM, data storage and serial ports for connectivity on every two square inches.”



Follow Slyck on Twitter @SlyckDotCom
Join Slyck's Facebook Fan Page
User avatar
sunnyd
 
Posts: 30027
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 2:34 pm

Re: Hardware Hackers Create A Modular Motherboard

Postby loserboy » Wed Aug 19, 2009 2:57 pm

kinda reminds me of Amiga...except completely different
Never give up on your stupid, stupid dreams.
loserboy
 
Posts: 345
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2007 11:21 am

Re: Hardware Hackers Create A Modular Motherboard

Postby Fartingbob » Wed Aug 19, 2009 4:32 pm

Thats very impressive, although not sure of the practicality of it.
User avatar
Fartingbob
P2P Trafficker
 
Posts: 13247
Joined: Sun Nov 20, 2005 4:18 pm
Location: Serenity

Re: Hardware Hackers Create A Modular Motherboard

Postby georgegad » Wed Aug 19, 2009 6:03 pm

sunnyd wrote:
.....a motherboard prototype that uses separate modules, each of which has its own processor, memory and storage. Each square cell in this design serves as a mini-motherboard and network node; the cells can allocate power and decide to accept or reject incoming transmissions and programs independently.....


Excellent! had thought the same for a while but am not technically minded enough to build it.

A Harddrive with its own processor could be sent processes, make the computations itself with its data and send only the finished product to the controll cpu. I expect it would speed the entire computing process.
If your modem had the same setup you could retain conectivity even if you had to reboot windows. You could possibly return after a 5min reboot and find the full 5min of download activity has continued uninterrupted while you were rebooting.
If you were really clever you could set the multiple processors up to monitor each other and perform diagnosis, when one failed it need not crash, you would get a message telling you exactly what your hardware fault is and which part to replace.
On the down side i am expecting it would also increase the parts cost of every individual component, and thats not a very popular feature. Still, it could give increased performance equal to the increased cost so it may be worth the price.

Am interested to see one in action. Sounds interesting.
georgegad
 
Posts: 889
Joined: Wed May 31, 2006 10:47 pm
Location: 192.168.1.1:69

Re: Hardware Hackers Create A Modular Motherboard

Postby MookeyMookerson » Wed Aug 19, 2009 7:10 pm

If your modem had the same setup you could retain conectivity even if you had to reboot windows. You could possibly return after a 5min reboot and find the full 5min of download activity has continued uninterrupted while you were rebooting.


That is actually a pretty cool idea. I wonder what it will do to total power consumption in having multiple smaller processors like that? It might actually allow you to decrease the power consumption by allowing you to turn off the processors you aren't using. i.e. If all you are doing is downloading you only need the modem processor and the hard drive processor. Most of the time my computer is on strictly for torrenting purposes, which I am sure wastes a good bit of electricity.
If there is a hell, and I go there, as soon as I get there I will be greeted by Satan himself, who will pull up in a Comcast van to install my internet. I will then proceed to spend the rest of eternity on a failing comcast-provided modem that I cannot for the life of me get rid of no matter how many times I call 1-800-COMCAST, spend 20 minutes on hold, and try to add the MAC address of the modem I bought myself to my account. My eternity will be comcastically fuxored...oh wait that's reality.
MookeyMookerson
 
Posts: 314
Joined: Sun May 20, 2007 2:30 am

Re: Hardware Hackers Create A Modular Motherboard

Postby georgegad » Wed Aug 19, 2009 11:25 pm

MookeyMookerson wrote:I wonder what it will do to total power consumption in having multiple smaller processors like that? It might actually allow you to decrease the power consumption by allowing you to turn off the processors you aren't using.


Now theres another angle i didnt even consider... i wonder if that might increase the working lifespan of the individual processors too
georgegad
 
Posts: 889
Joined: Wed May 31, 2006 10:47 pm
Location: 192.168.1.1:69

Re: Hardware Hackers Create A Modular Motherboard

Postby Overnet User » Wed Aug 19, 2009 11:30 pm

If all you are doing is downloading you only need the modem processor and the hard drive processor. Most of the time my computer is on strictly for torrenting purposes, which I am sure wastes a good bit of electricity.


They make other devices for this activity you are describing if you don't want to leave your pc on just for torrenting purposes. As for how good those services are,(can you import you own blocklist or run a vpn through it?)it is unknown. I would prefer my computer for this until then unless your running off of a seedbox :D, Then you can just remote into the seedbox and do your things from there, and if you want to dl the stuff off of your seedbox, you could just get the fastest line your isp provides/ find a fast hotspot or internet cafe and get your stuff @ max speed through www if you just want it the fastest, or perhaps use your "box" to dl from www off of too if its able to. The technology @ supplies are available, pretty much right out of the box to torrent while not on a pc, as well as use other file sharing applications while not on a pc = (saving electricity) should you choose.

As for the motherboard, great idea; so when this is ready, we will be able to purchase or make it ourselves. :thumbup:
Why Join The Fight?
http://www.eff.org/bloggers/join/
News Without Queues: Follow OvernetUser on Twitter http://twitter.com/OvernetUser
User avatar
Overnet User
 
Posts: 2294
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 6:27 pm
Location: Ed2k/Bittorrent

Re: Hardware Hackers Create A Modular Motherboard

Postby zbeast » Thu Aug 20, 2009 1:21 am

georgegad wrote:
sunnyd wrote:
.....a motherboard prototype that uses separate modules, each of which has its own processor, memory and storage. Each square cell in this design serves as a mini-motherboard and network node; the cells can allocate power and decide to accept or reject incoming transmissions and programs independently.....


Excellent! had thought the same for a while but am not technically minded enough to build it.

A Harddrive with its own processor could be sent processes, make the computations itself with its data and send only the finished product to the controll cpu. I expect it would speed the entire computing process.
If your modem had the same setup you could retain conectivity even if you had to reboot windows. You could possibly return after a 5min reboot and find the full 5min of download activity has continued uninterrupted while you were rebooting.
If you were really clever you could set the multiple processors up to monitor each other and perform diagnosis, when one failed it need not crash, you would get a message telling you exactly what your hardware fault is and which part to replace.
On the down side i am expecting it would also increase the parts cost of every individual component, and thats not a very popular feature. Still, it could give increased performance equal to the increased cost so it may be worth the price.

Am interested to see one in action. Sounds interesting.



Not only would it cost more it would be imposable to program.
lots of the Ideas you have listed already have existed in the past.
They are all now rejected ideas.
There were things like modem buffer board that would save data in the raw untill your computer had time to
get back to receiving - processing that data.
There were smart hard drives, that buffered data and then when it was doing what needed to be done
would call the "computer" to say the data was ready .

All of this crap is old.. 1960's - 1980's hardware / software Ideas.
They are slow, they were hard to program and now are gone.

The only place where this type of multiple board system like this is useful is
in a mission critical automatic failure over system design.
Lets say for a rocket or airplane. it does not belong on a desktop.
But even in that work space this computer system fails.
redundant systems can't have data and direct power interconnection.
if one board fails... do to an electrical fault it stands a 50% chance of distorting
its interconnected neighbor. So mission critical system are isolated from each other
and only pass via buffer's communications data.

Oh well, long story short.. I'll stick with my standard monolithic processer, databuss and ram interconnect system
some very smart people worked very hard to make those system as fast as they can be.
Knowledge is power. Power corrupts. Study hard. Be evil.
zbeast
 
Posts: 6783
Joined: Thu Apr 01, 2004 5:20 pm
Location: Behind that itch. yes, that one right there.

Re: Hardware Hackers Create A Modular Motherboard

Postby georgegad » Thu Aug 20, 2009 11:27 am

@zbeast

"Impossible to program" is quite a strong statement. Especially considering your next sentence is saying that "lots of the Ideas you have listed already have existed in the past."

Yeah, sure i dont think this is the miracle answer to every hardware problem. I just found it made me curious and was hypothesizing some other future research angles.

I hadnt even really considered it for the marketplace only as an experimental toy in a lab somewhere.
Ok theres only a few fields that might want it, but if they do want similar products i suppose that makes at least a few tiny niche markets.
And if the ideas have been around in the past that only proves a desire for them, the fact that the technology was not perfected does not negate that desire.

Eventually though things will change. I doubt it will all come out as these people have envisioned but the computer you are using now will not be around a hundred years from now, accept as a museum piece.
georgegad
 
Posts: 889
Joined: Wed May 31, 2006 10:47 pm
Location: 192.168.1.1:69


Return to Tech/Hardware News

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

© 2001-2008 Slyck.com