3.2 / September 17, 2010
Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP,
Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2003,
Linux, Mac OS X
Nvidia's CUDA zone
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
(an acronym for
Unified Device Architecture
) is a
parallel computing architecture
developed by NVIDIA. CUDA is the
computing engine in NVIDIA
graphics processing units (GPUs) that
is accessible to software developers
through variants of industry standard
programming languages. Programmers
use 'C for CUDA' (C with NVIDIA
extensions and certain restrictions),
compiled through a PathScale Open64
to code algorithms for
execution on the GPU. CUDA
architecture shares a range of
computational interfaces with two competitors -the Khronos Group's Open Computing Language
. Third party wrappers are also available for Python, Perl, Fortran, Java,
Ruby, Lua, and MATLAB.
CUDA gives developers access to the virtual instruction set and memory of the parallel computational
elements in CUDA GPUs. Using CUDA, the latest NVIDIA GPUs become accessible for computation
like CPUs. Unlike CPUs however, GPUs have a parallel throughput architecture that emphasizes
executing many concurrent threads slowly, rather than executing a single thread very fast. This approach
of solving general purpose problems on GPUs is known as GPGPU.
In the computer game industry, in addition to graphics rendering, GPUs are used in game physics
calculations (physical effects like debris, smoke, fire, fluids); examples include PhysX and Bullet.
CUDA has also been used to accelerate non-graphical applications in computational biology,
cryptography and other fields by an order of magnitude or more.
An example of this is the
BOINC distributed computing client.
CUDA provides both a low level API and a higher level API. The initial CUDA SDK was made public
on 15 February 2007, for Microsoft Windows and Linux. Mac OS X support was later added in version
, which supersedes the beta released February 14, 2008.
CUDA works with all NVIDIA GPUs
from the G8X series onwards, including GeForce, Quadro and the Tesla line. NVIDIA states that
programs developed for the GeForce 8 series will also work without modification on all future NVIDIA
video cards, due to binary compatibility.
Page 1 of 10
CUDA - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia