June 12, 2012 -- Led by AMD, several global technology leaders came together to announce the formation of the Heterogeneous System Architecture (HSA) Foundation. The HSA Foundation is a non-profit consortium established to define and promote an open, standards-based approach to heterogeneous computing that will provide a common hardware specification and support ecosystem to make it easier for software developers to deliver applications that can take greater advantage of modern processors.
AMD, ARM, Imagination Technologies, MediaTek, and Texas Instruments are the initial founding members of the HSA Foundation. The companies will work together to drive a single architecture specification and simplify the programming model to help software developers take greater advantage of the capabilities found in modern central processing units (CPUs) and graphics processing units (GPUs), and unlock the performance and power efficiency of the parallel computing engines found in heterogeneous processors.
"HSA moves the industry beyond the constraints of the legacy system architecture of the past 25-plus years that is now stifling software innovations," said Phil Rogers, HSA Foundation President and AMD Corporate Fellow. "By aiming HSA squarely at the needs of the software developer, we have designed a common hardware platform for high-performance, energy-efficient solutions. HSA is unlocking a new realm of possibilities across PCs, smartphones, tablets and ultra-thin notebooks, as well as the innovative supercomputers and cloud services that define the modern computing experience."
As an independent consortium, the HSA Foundation is open to any and all computing industry professionals with an interest in driving the next era in computing performance and energy efficiency. The HSA Foundation welcomes forward-thinking semiconductor companies, platform and OS vendors, device manufacturers, independent software vendors, academia and open source developers. Members of the HSA Foundation plan to deliver robust development solutions for heterogeneous compute to drive innovative content and applications with developer tools, software developer kits (SDKs), libraries, documentation, training, support and more.
"We are all demanding more from the technology that connects us to our digital worlds. Graphical interfaces are critical to the user experience but can have a power impact. With open standards, developers can now provide outstanding graphics without compromising power-efficiency," said Jem Davies, ARM Fellow and Vice President of Technology, Media Processor Division, ARM.
"Heterogeneous processing architectures are fundamental to scalability, flexibility and performance for future SOC (systems-on-chip) design. We believe that the combination of CPUs with increasingly powerful on-chip GPUs, using industry standard APIs such as OpenCL, Renderscript Compute, and Direct Compute, is the vital first step along this path," said Tony King-Smith, Vice President of Marketing, Imagination Technologies. "The HSA APIs and tools complement these higher-level APIs to help SOC systems engineers create future-generation computing platforms. As applications developers embrace the benefits of embracing such architectures, the HSA Foundation will provide a valuable cross-platform, cross-OS means of ensuring maximum heterogeneous application portability and optimization."
In addition to the founding members, contributor and supporting-level members will assist with research, development, production, manufacture, use, and the sale of HSA and heterogeneous computing software. For more information about the HSA Foundation's membership levels and benefits or to join the organization, please go to the HSA Foundation website.
Go to the HSA (Heterogeneous System Architecture) Foundation website to find additional information.