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Programming the Cell Processor: For Games, Graphics, and Computation

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Make the Most of IBM’s Breakthrough Cell Processor in Any Gaming, Graphics, or Scientific Application

 

IBM’s Cell processor delivers truly stunning computational power: enough to satisfy even the most demanding gamers and graphics developers. That’s why Sony chose the Cell to drive its breakthrough PlayStation 3 and why Cell processors are at the heart of today’s most powerful supercomputers. But many developers have struggled to create high-performance Cell applications: the practical, coherent information they need simply hasn’t existed.

 

Programming the Cell Processor solves that problem once and for all. Whether you’re a game developer, graphics programmer, or engineer, Matthew Scarpino shows you how to create applications that leverage all the Cell’s extraordinary power. Scarpino covers everything from the Cell’s advanced architecture to its powerful tools and libraries, presenting realistic code examples that help you gain an increasingly deep and intuitive understanding of Cell development.

 

Scarpino illuminates each of the Cell’s most important technical innovations, introduces the commands needed to access its power, and walks you through the entire development process, including compiling, linking, debugging, and simulating code. He also offers start-to-finish case studies for three especially important Cell applications: games, graphics, and scientific computing. The Cell platform offers unprecedented potential, and this book will help you make the most of it.

  • Mastering the Cell SDK, including the GCC-based buildchain, ppu-gdb/spu-gdb debuggers, IBM Full System Simulator, and Cell IDE
  • Understanding the Cell’s central processing core, the PowerPC Processor Unit (PPU): structure, programming libraries, and AltiVec instructions
  • Programming the Synergistic Processor Unit (SPU): vector processing, communication, caching, assembler coding, and more
  • Leveraging SDK vector and matrix libraries, including the Large Matrix Library, BLAS Library, FFT libraries, Multiprecision Library, and Monte Carlo API
  • Coding basic 2D graphics using the Linux frame buffer
  • Building 3D graphics with the new Gallium OpenGL library 
  • Constructing 3D games with Ogre3D and packaging them using Collada digital content interchange
  • Optimizing the performance of your Cell applications
  • Developing on standard PCs and transferring code to Cell systems such as the PlayStation 3
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