Khronos Releases SYCL 1.2 Final Specification

C++ single-source heterogeneous programming for OpenCL 1.2

May 11th 2015, IWOCL, Stanford University, CA – The Khronos™ Group,an open consortium of leading hardware and software companies, today announced the ratification and public release of the finalized SYCL ™ 1.2 specification.  SYCL for OpenCL™ enables code for heterogeneous processors to be written in a “single-source” style using completely standard C++.  The multi-vendor SYCL 1.2 standard is available royalty-free for industry use, and the full specification together with details about the SYCL conformance test suite and Adopters Program can be found at www.khronos.org/sycl.

SYCL single-source programming enables host and kernel code to be contained in the same source file, using the same templates for both, with full OpenCL acceleration.  Developers can program at a higher level than OpenCL C, but always have access to existing code through seamless integration with OpenCL programs, C/C++ libraries and frameworks such as OpenMP.  SYCL includes templates and lambda functions for higher-level application software that can be cleanly coded for optimized acceleration across the extensive range of shipping OpenCL 1.2 implementations.  

“SYCL is complementary to the ongoing evolution of the OpenCL kernel language and we see the lessons and technologies from SYCL and the evolving OpenCL C++ kernel language merging and influencing each other over time,” said Andrew Richards, chair of the SYCL working group and CEO of Codeplay.  “C++ programing techniques can help provide performance portability for OpenCL applications by providing highly adaptive parallel software than is easily used and re-used.”

OpenCL’s interop capability is inherited by SYCL to enable applications to use SYCL in conjunction with OpenGL, DirectX and the upcoming Vulkan API without memory-copy overhead.  In return, SYCL can provide simplified error handling and effective compute and communication overlap between host and devices.

SYCL 1.2 can be implemented to work with a variety of existing and new C++ compilers and layers over OpenCL 1.2 implementations from diverse vendors.  SYCL 1.2 builds on the features of C++11, with additional support for C++14 and also will enable C++17 Parallel STL programs to be accelerated on OpenCL devices in the future.   SYCL 1.2 also builds on the Khronos SPIR™ 1.2 portable binary format and fully leverages the ongoing work at the OpenCL and SPIR working groups at Khronos with the aim to provide long-term support for future OpenCL capabilities, including OpenCL 2.1 and SPIR-V™.

The C++ standards body is working on a new Parallel STL standard for C++17. To support this effort, Khronos is kick-starting an open-source project to support Parallel STL on top of SYCL, running on OpenCL devices.This project is hosted at https://github.com/KhronosGroup/SyclParallelSTL.

See SYCL at IWOCL 2015

Khronos is pleased to have a notable profile at IWOCL 2015, the 3rd International Workshop on OpenCL. IWOCL is a community led meeting of OpenCL developers, researchers and suppliers to share OpenCL best practice and to advance the OpenCL standard. More information on IWOCL, including how to register, can be found at www.iwocl.org. Khronos SYCL sessions are as follows:

  • May 12, 9:30AM: in-depth tutorial “Khronos SYCL for OpenCL”
  • May 12, 3:30PM: a FREE “Khronos Developer Feedback and Panel Discussion” covering OpenCL 2.1, SYCL 1.2 and SPIR
  • May 13 12:10PM: SYCL working group chair Andrew Richards will be presenting on SYCL 1.2.

Industry Support for SYCL

“It is great to see innovation in higher-level programming languages that tap into the tremendous compute power of OpenCL capable devices” says Greg Stoner, senior director at AMD.  “Providing developers with a single-source C++ programming model that runs across multiple vendor devices showcases the potential that an open compute standard can deliver.  We look forward to seeing this trend continue to unfold in the future.”

“At Codeplay, we believe software developers benefit from working with open standards because it gives them the greatest flexibility to deploy their software to their customers,” said Maria Rovatsou, Principal Software Engineer, SYCL technologies, Codeplay.  “At the same time, we recognize that users are demanding ever higher-performance software and longer battery lifetimes on devices that are available everywhere. We worked hard to fulfill this challenge to give C++ developers the full power and performance of OpenCL via the SYCL open standard.”

“At Imagination, we are committed to helping drive standards around heterogeneous processing and GPU compute. We’re delighted to see SYCL running on PowerVR GPUs, extending the power and efficiency of GPU accelerated computing to a greater number of mobile apps developers” said Peter McGuinness, director of Multimedia Technology Marketing, Imagination Technologies.”

“Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. worked with Khronos on the specification of SYCL 1.2 in order to help enable mobile developers to utilize C++ for programming OpenCL-supporting GPUs,” said Eric Demers, vice president of GPU hardware at Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “SYCL 1.2 has the potential to enable the development of portable libraries that abstract away the host/device boundary, delivering the necessary flexibility to use higher-level C++ abstractions in mobile devices that use Snapdragon™ processors.”

"SYCL is the open standard, higher-level programming model the heterogeneous computing community has been waiting years for. SYCL tracks the latest developments in modern C++, with a clear path to C++ 17 to simplify parallel programming across multiple platforms. What I find unique about SYCL is the broad range application domains it is suitable for: allowing simple accelerator programming for beginner programmers by using only modern C++, but also enables power programmers to use advanced features to reach the ultimate performance while keeping an elegant software architecture," said Ronan Keryell, lead developer of triSYCL, the Open Source SYCL implementation project.

About The Khronos Group

The Khronos Group is an industry consortium creating open standards to enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics, vision, sensor processing and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices.  Khronos standards include Vulkan™, OpenGL®, OpenGL® ES, WebGL™, OpenCL™, SPIR™, SPIR-V™, SYCL™, WebCL™, OpenVX™, EGL™, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, StreamInput™, COLLADA™, and glTF™.  All Khronos members are enabled to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests.  More information is available at www.khronos.org.

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Khronos, Vulkan, DevU, StreamInput, SPIR, SPIR-V, SYCL, WebGL, WebCL, COLLADA, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenVX, EGL, glTF, OpenSL ES and OpenMAX are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc. ASTC is a trademark of ARM Holdings PLC, OpenCL is a trademark of Apple Inc. and OpenGL is a registered trademark and the OpenGL ES and OpenGL SC logos are trademarks of Silicon Graphics International used under license by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

Khronos Releases OpenCL 2.1 Provisional Specification for Public Review

OpenCL C++ Kernel Language Significantly Boosts Programmer Productivity;
New SPIR-V common intermediate language used by both OpenCL 2.1 and Vulkan

March 3rd 2015, San Francisco, GDC – The Khronos™ Group, an open consortium of leading hardware and software companies, today announced the ratification and public release of the OpenCL™ 2.1 provisional specification. OpenCL 2.1 is a significant evolution of the open, royalty-free standard for heterogeneous parallel programming that defines a new kernel language based on a subset of C++ for significantly enhanced programmer productivity, and support for the new Khronos SPIR-V™ cross-API shader program intermediate language now used by both OpenCL and the new Vulkan graphics API. The OpenCL 2.1 specification at www.khronos.org/opencl/ is released in provisional form to enable developers and implementers to provide feedback before finalization at the OpenCL forums: https://www.khronos.org/opencl/opencl_feedback_forum.

OpenCL 2.1 Technical Overview Session in San Francisco
OpenCL Ecosystem Advances: OpenCL 2.1, SPIR-V and SYCL
Wednesday, March 4th at 3-4:30pm 
Venue: SF Green Space at 657 Mission Street, Suite 200 – five minutes’ walk from GDC
Overview of OpenCL 2.1, SPIR-V and direct interaction with working group members
No GDC pass required, however seating is limited so please register if you plan to attend.

About OpenCL 2.1

The OpenCL C++ kernel language is a static subset of C++14 and significantly boosts parallel programming productivity by providing lambda functions, classes, templates, operator overloading, and many other C++ features to free developers from low-level coding details without sacrificing performance. OpenCL C++ enables reusable device libraries and containers for easily sharable code that is fast and elegant, and templates enables meta-programming for highly adaptive software that cleanly delivers performance portability.

In another significant announcement today, OpenCL 2.1 and Vulkan™, the new open standard API for high-efficiency access to graphics and compute on modern GPUs, are now sharing core intermediate language technologies resulting in SPIR-V; a revolution in the Khronos Standard Portable Intermediate Representation initially used by OpenCL™, now fully defined by Khronos with native support for shader and kernel features. SPIR-V splits the compiler chain, enabling high-level language front-ends to emit programs in a standardized intermediate form to be ingested by Vulkan or OpenCL drivers. Eliminating the need for a built-in high-level language source compiler significantly reduces driver complexity and will enable a diversity of language front-ends. Additionally, a standardized IR provides a measure of kernel IP protection, accelerated kernel load times and enables developers to use a common language front-end, improving kernel reliability and portability across multiple implementations.

In addition to the introduction of the OpenCL C++ shading language, OpenCL 2.1 brings enhancements to the OpenCL API, including:

  • Subgroups, that expose hardware threading, are bought into core, together with additional subgroup query operations for increased flexibility;
  • clCloneKernel enables copying of kernel objects and state for safe implementation of copy constructors in wrapper classes;
  • Low-latency device timer queries support alignment of profiling between device and host code.

“OpenCL 2.1 has responded to developer demand with a C++ based kernel language which delivers the next level of programmer productivity in parallel programming, while still preserving backwards compatibility for existing OpenCL C kernels,” said Neil Trevett, president of the Khronos Group and chair of the OpenCL working group and vice president at NVIDIA. “The use of SPIR-V by Vulkan and OpenCL will fundamentally reshape the graphics and compute ecosystem by enabling diverse language and middleware front-ends to leverage the hardware community’s investment in optimized back-end drivers. Khronos is investigating catalyzing the OpenCL 2.1 ecosystem with an open source front-end OpenCL C++ compiler implementation and a convertor between SPIR-V and LLVM, and we welcome developer feedback on this and any other aspect of OpenCL 2.1.”

Industry Support for OpenCL 2.1

“AMD is excited to see OpenCL™ evolve to include a C++ kernel language, which will significantly expand the number of developers targeting heterogeneous platforms,” said Manju Hegde, corporate vice president, Heterogeneous Applications and Developer Solutions, AMD.  “We also applaud the bold move to SPIR-V which provides a common binary target language across graphics and compute.  This greatly simplifies vendor driver development and enables innovation in new languages targeting cross-platform acceleration of applications.”

“Mobile devices are now the primary computing platform for consumers,” said Dennis Laudick, vice president, partner marketing, media processing group, ARM. “As a founding member of Khronos, ARM is fully behind the new OpenCL specification including new features that enable mobile computing to be more energy-efficient.”

“Intel has been deeply involved in the development of OpenCL 2.1. We’re excited to get this new specification into the hands of Intel platform developers,” said Jon Khazam, vice president and general manager of Intel’s Visual & Parallel Computing Group.  “The addition of C++ support and movement toward a Common IR across OpenCL and the new Vulkan graphics API will facilitate wider adoption and deployment of OpenCL in heterogeneous computing applications.”

“The addition of the C++ kernel language in OpenCL 2.1 is a very exciting development for the HPC community,” said Simon McIntosh-Smith, head of the HPC research group at the University of Bristol. “C++ is being increasingly used to develop scientific codes, and so this development will make it much easier to port new HPC software to a wide variety of high performance, parallel hardware. OpenCL 2.1’s C++ kernel language could cause a step change in the rate of adoption for OpenCL in HPC.”

“We at YetiWare believe that software should run as fast as possible by using all of the processors on a system, and the OpenCL standard makes that possible,” said AJ Guillon, founder and chief technical officer, YetiWare Inc. “The OpenCL C++ kernel language and SPIR-V are both major advancements and big wins for developers.”

About The Khronos Group

The Khronos Group is an industry consortium creating open standards to enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics, vision, sensor processing and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices. Khronos standards include Vulkan™, OpenGL®, OpenGL® ES, WebGL™, OpenCL™, SPIR™, SYCL™, WebCL™, OpenVX™, EGL™, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, StreamInput™, COLLADA™, and glTF™. All Khronos members are enabled to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests. More information is available at www.khronos.org.

Khronos Reveals Vulkan API for High-efficiency Graphics and Compute on GPUs

Demos of real-world applications running on Vulkan drivers and hardware at GDC;
New SPIR-V intermediate language shared by Vulkan and OpenCL 2.1

March 3rd 2015, San Francisco, GDC – The Khronos™ Group, an open consortium of leading hardware and software companies, today announced the availability of technical previews of the new Vulkan™ open standard API for high-efficiency access to graphics and compute on modern GPUs used in a wide variety of devices. This ground-up design, previously referred to as the Next Generation OpenGL® Initiative, provides applications direct control over GPU acceleration for maximized performance and predictability, and uses Khronos’ new SPIR-V™ specification for shading language flexibility. Vulkan initial specifications and implementations are expected later this year and any company may participate in Vulkan’s ongoing development by joining Khronos. Industry feedback is welcomed at https://www.khronos.org/vulkan/vulkan_feedback_forum.

“Industry standard APIs like Vulkan are a critical part of enabling developers to bring the best possible experience to customers on multiple platforms,” said Valve's Gabe Newell.  “Valve and the other Khronos members are working hard to ensure that this high-performance graphics interface is made available as widely as possible and we view it as a critical component of SteamOS and future Valve games.”

Vulkan Technical Previews at GDC in San Francisco

Khronos is offering special preview sessions for insights into the Vulkan architecture.

Vulkan: The Future of High Performance Graphics – hosted by Valve
Thursday, March 5 at 10-11AM
Venue: Room 2006 in the West Hall of the GDC Conference
A technical preview of the Vulkan API, with advanced techniques and live demos of real-world applications running on Vulkan drivers and hardware

Vulkan: the Next Generation Graphics and Compute API
Thursday, March 5 at 12-1:30pm and repeated at 2–3:30pm
Venue: SF Green Space at 657 Mission Street, Suite 200 – five minutes’ walk from GDC
Vulkan overview, demos and direct interaction with working group members
No GDC pass required, however seating is limited so please register if you plan to attend.

About Vulkan
Vulkan is a unified specification that minimizes driver overhead and enables multi-threaded GPU command preparation for optimal graphics and compute performance on diverse mobile, desktop, console and embedded platforms. Vulkan also provides the direct GPU control demanded by sophisticated game engines, middleware and applications with the cross vendor performance and functional portability resulting from simpler, more predictable drivers. The layered design of Vulkan enables multiple IHVs to plug into a common, extensible architecture for code validation, debugging and profiling during development without impacting production performance; this layering flexibility is expected to catalyze strong innovation in cross-vendor GPU tools.

In another significant announcement today, Vulkan and OpenCL 2.1 are now sharing core intermediate language technologies resulting in SPIR-V; a revolution in the Khronos Standard Portable Intermediate Representation initially used by OpenCL™, now fully defined by Khronos with native support for shader and kernel features. SPIR-V splits the compiler chain, enabling high-level language front-ends to emit programs in a standardized intermediate form to be ingested by Vulkan or OpenCL drivers. Eliminating the need for a built-in high-level language source compiler significantly reduces GPU driver complexity and will enable a diversity of language front-ends. Additionally, a standardized IR provides a measure of shader IP protection, accelerated shader load times and enables developers to use a common language front-end, improving shader reliability and portability across multiple implementations.

“Vulkan is a significant Khronos initiative to provide developers the choice of a state-of-the-art GPU API that is open and portable across multiple platforms, at a time where platform diversity is increasing,” said Neil Trevett, president of the Khronos Group and vice president at NVIDIA. “Khronos will be driving the Vulkan ecosystem with open source conformance test components and sample front-end compiler implementations that use SPIR-V to leverage the hardware community’s investment in optimized back-end drivers. Vulkan expands the family of Khronos 3D APIs, and complements OpenGL and OpenGL ES that between them, provide access to billions of GPUs today, and will continue to be evolved and maintained to meet industry needs.”

Industry Support for Vulkan

“With direct influence on several generations of hardware and software architectures for milliwatt to kilowatt platforms, OpenGL is undeniably the industry’s most successful 3D Graphics API,” said Raja Koduri, corporate vice president, Visual and Perceptual Computing, AMD. “Vulkan is a transformation to OpenGL that brings forth exciting low-overhead capabilities to enable compelling increases in performance and power efficiency while maintaining developer productivity.”

“Since helping found Khronos, ARM has strived to improve the efficiency of standards and deliver compelling graphics to mobile devices with minimum energy consumption,” said Jem Davies, vice president of technology, media processing group, ARM. “Vulkan is a big step forward in enabling our ecosystem of developers to unleash the capabilities of the latest ARM GPU technology.”

“Codeplay is excited that Vulkan's SPIR-V feature will enable new languages and tools to be used in graphics. By standardizing the way new languages can be added to graphics, a whole new tools ecosystem is being opened up,” said Andrew Richards, CEO of Codeplay.

“As one of the major manufacturers for digital automotive instrument clusters and infotainment systems, Continental fully supports Khronos' new Vulkan initiative,” Dr. Ulrich Kabatek, principal technical expert graphic systems & 3D visualization at Continental Automotive. “It will enable high-quality graphic systems with custom safety levels and increase connectivity for our sustainable, safe, comfortable, individual, and affordable solutions. Simply, it is a huge step forward towards the driving experience of tomorrow. We wish Vulkan all the best!”

“Imagination is proud to have been a major contributor to the new Vulkan standard. With this new API alongside OpenGL ES, we feel that Khronos now has the right set of APIs in place to address the extreme performance and mainstream ends of the graphics programming market,” said Peter McGuinness, director of technology marketing, Imagination Technologies.

“NVIDIA is a strong supporter of OpenGL and we are actively engaged in the development of Vulkan,” said Barthold Lichtenbelt, senior director of Tegra graphics software at NVIDIA.  “Vulkan’s focus on enabling portable, high-performance games and engines will drive cutting-edge content across the range of NVIDIA’s gaming platforms including PC, mobile and cloud.”

“The Vulkan API is a groundbreaking rethink of graphics software technology,” said Dan Baker, co-founder, Oxide Games. “The efficiency and threading abilities are profound leaps forward that enable Oxide Games to create entirely new game genres on a variety of platforms.”

“We are very excited about the introduction of the Vulkan™ API. Vulkan will allow us to maximize GPU performance for graphically demanding games enabled with future versions of our cross-platform portability technology,” said Gavriel State, CTO & Founder at TransGaming. “The Khronos Group plays a leading role in maintaining open standards across a unified technology ecosystem that TransGaming is proud to contribute towards as a dedicated member.”

“Efficient, close to metal, developer-friendly GPU APIs combining rendering with compute are a natural fit for Vivante’s highly efficient GPU architectures,” said Wei-Jin Dai, president and CEO of Vivante. “Vulkan unleashes the newest innovations inside Vivante's latest GPU hardware and will provide a boost to the pervasive Vivante GPU powered platforms currently in the market. Khronos has moved the industry forward with the release of Vulkan to drive platforms in the current and next generation of the GPU-enabled ecosystem.”

About The Khronos Group

The Khronos Group is an industry consortium creating open standards to enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics, vision, sensor processing and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices. Khronos standards include Vulkan™, OpenGL®, OpenGL® ES, WebGL™, OpenCL™, SPIR™, SYCL™, WebCL™, OpenVX™, EGL™, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, StreamInput™, COLLADA™, and glTF™. All Khronos members are enabled to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests. More information is available at www.khronos.org.

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Khronos, Vulkan, DevU, StreamInput, SPIR, SPIR-V, SYCL, WebGL, WebCL, COLLADA, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenVX, EGL, glTF, OpenSL ES and OpenMAX are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc. ASTC is a trademark of ARM Holdings PLC, OpenCL is a trademark of Apple Inc. and OpenGL is a registered trademark and the OpenGL ES and OpenGL SC logos are trademarks of Silicon Graphics International used under license by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

Xilinx SDAccel Development Environment for OpenCL, C, and C++, Achieves Khronos Conformance

First complete CPU/GPU-like development and run-time experience for FPGAs now OpenCL conformance compliant

SAN JOSE, Calif., Jan. 14, 2015 Xilinx, Inc.today announced that the SDAccel™ development environment for OpenCL™, C, and C++ is now Khronos OpenCL 1.0 standard compliant. The OpenCL standard provides a uniform programming environment for software developers to write efficient, portable code enabling a rich range of algorithms to be easily accelerated on Xilinx FPGAs. SDAccel, the newest member of the SDx™ family, includes an architecturally optimizing compiler for OpenCL, C, and C++ and is proven to deliver up to 25X better performance/watt compared to CPUs or GPUs and 3X the performance and resource efficiency of other FPGA solutions.

SDAccel combines the industry's first architecturally optimizing compiler supporting OpenCL, C, and C++ kernels, along with libraries, development boards, and a complete CPU/GPU-like development and run-time experience for FPGAs.

"We are excited to see Xilinx's support for the OpenCL standard for parallel programming of heterogeneous systems. FPGAs are a natural fit for compute intensive algorithms where high throughput, low latency and low power are critical to meet system requirements," said Neil Trevett, president of the Khronos Group and chair of the OpenCL working group. "Now the entire OpenCL design community can seamlessly take advantage of Xilinx FPGAs."

Availability
To access the capabilities of SDAccel, please contact your local sales representative. To learn more visit www.xilinx.com/sdaccel. The product is conformant with Khronos OpenCL 1.0 specification.

About SDx
SDx is a family of development environments for systems and software engineers. SDx enables developers with little or no FPGA expertise to use high level programming languages to leverage the power of programmable hardware with industry standard processors. To learn more visit www.xilinx.com/sdx.

About Xilinx
Xilinx is the world's leading provider of All Programmable FPGAs, SoCs and 3D ICs. These industry-leading devices are coupled with a next-generation design environment and IP to serve a broad range of customer needs, from programmable logic to programmable systems integration. For more information, visit www.xilinx.com.

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© Copyright 2015 Xilinx, Inc. Xilinx, the Xilinx logo, Artix, ISE, Kintex, Spartan, Virtex, Vivado, Zynq, and other designated brands included herein are trademarks of Xilinx in the United States and other countries. OpenCL and the OpenCL logo are trademarks of Apple Inc. used by permission by Khronos. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Khronos Updates OpenCL and SYCL Specifications for Heterogeneous Parallel Programming

Integration of developer feedback for improved application portability;
Alignment with latest C++ developments

November 18th, 2014, – The Khronos™ Group today announced the ratification and public release of updated OpenCL™ 2.0 and Provisional SYCL™ 1.2 specifications. The new specifications integrate feedback from the developer community, align with the latest C++ developments, and increase implementation consistency for improved portability of heterogeneous parallel applications. The latest OpenCL and SYCL specifications are open, royalty-free and available at www.khronos.org/opencl/ and www.khronos.org/opencl/sycl.

Khronos is constantly listening to feedback from the OpenCL developer community, and consolidating improvements and clarifications into our specifications to provide the best possible platform for portable parallel applications,” said Neil Trevett, president of the Khronos Group, chair of the OpenCL working group and vice president of mobile ecosystem at NVIDIA. “OpenCL continues to develop a rich ecosystem for heterogeneous parallel programming across diverse platforms. Paired with ongoing improvements to the core OpenCL specification, SYCL adds rich single source C++ programming for OpenCL developers and the SPIR portable binary format enables a wide range of programming models to be accelerated by diverse OpenCL devices.

Updated SYCL 1.2 Provisional Specification

Implementations of SYCL for OpenCL enable developers to write in a “single-source” C++ programming style. The evolving provisional specification has been updated based on feedback from developers and to align with the latest directions in modern C++ programming. SYCL enables powerful, modern C++ features, such as templates and lambda functions to accelerate their software for the wide range of heterogeneous devices that OpenCL supports. The SYCL working group continues to work with developers, seeking feedback and refining the provisional specification to deliver a final specification that will enable OpenCL devices to support modern C++ in an open, standard way. SYCL builds on the SPIR portable binary format and is one way of bringing higher-level models to OpenCL, forming a valuable part of the programming model ecosystem for OpenCL devices.

Updated OpenCL 2.0 Specification

The OpenCL working group has released an update to the OpenCL 2.0 specification, with clarifications that improve specification readability and reduce minor cross-vendor implementation inconsistencies, making it easier for developers to write portable OpenCL applications that reliably work across multiple devices. The changes to the OpenCL 2.0 specification include:

  • Clarifications around support for Blocks in OpenCL C;
  • Refinements to the precision requirements for math functions in fast math mode;
  • Clarification of flags that can be applied to pipes;
  • A new extension, cl_khr_device_enqueue_local_arg_types, for enqueueing device kernels to use arguments that are a pointer to a user defined type in local memory;
  • Clarification of the CL_MEM_KERNEL_READ_AND_WRITE flag to enable filtering of image formats that can be passed to a single kernel instance as read_write.

Industry Support

It is great to see the computing industry coming together to improve the programmer experience for accessing the tremendous compute potential of modern heterogeneous architectures. OpenCL 2.0 and SYCL both represent significant steps forward in ease of programming and performance for a broad range of software applications,” said Manju Hegde, corporate vice president, Heterogeneous Applications and Solutions Group at AMD.

We are seeing a lot of developers want to accelerate their software with a range of different accelerator processors. Being an open standard, OpenCL provides developers the greatest range of options for acceleration,” said Andrew Richards, CEO of Codeplay. “At the same time, we are seeing developers using a C++ single-source programming model, because it is easy to use and easy to write libraries for. SYCL enables developers to use a modern C++ development style while still using royalty-free open standards and leverage the wide adoption of OpenCL by accelerator vendors.

At Imagination, we are committed to helping drive standards around heterogeneous processing and GPU compute. It’s critical that the industry continues to improve the GPU compute programming model, and Khronos is playing a key role in these efforts. We’re delighted to see continued momentum with OpenCL 2.0 and SYCL,” said Peter McGuinness, director of Multimedia Technology Marketing, Imagination Technologies.

OpenCL at Supercomputing 2014

There are OpenCL-related presentations and activities at Supercomputing 2014 in New Orleans on November 16-21st:

Tutorial: OpenCL: A Hands-on Introduction
Monday, Nov 17 | 8:30am - 5:00pm | Room 395
Tim Mattson, Alice Koniges, and Simon McIntosh–Smith
The tutorial format will be a 50/50 split between lectures and exercises. Students will use their own laptops (Windows, Linux or OS/X) and log into a remote server running an OpenCL platform.
More information and calendar links

OpenCL BOF: OpenCL Version 2.0 and Beyond
Tuesday, Nov 18 | 5:30pm – 7:00pm | Room 275-76-77
Tim Mattson, Simon McIntosh–Smith, Andrew Richards, Ronan Keryell and others
This BOF will discuss the latest developments in OpenCL including the recent OpenCL 2.0 specification, SYCL, SPIR, and more.
More information and calendar links

About The Khronos Group

The Khronos Group is an industry consortium creating open standards to enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics, vision, sensor processing and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices. Khronos standards include OpenGL®, OpenGL® ES, WebGL™, OpenCL™, SPIR™, SYCL™, WebCL™, OpenVX™, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, StreamInput™, COLLADA™ and glTF™. All Khronos members are enabled to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests. More information is available at www.khronos.org.

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Khronos, DevU, StreamInput, SPIR, SYCL, WebGL, WebCL, COLLADA, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenVX, VXU, glTF, OpenSL ES and OpenMAX are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc. ASTC is a trademark of ARM Holdings PLC, OpenCL is a trademark of Apple Inc. and OpenGL is a registered trademark and the OpenGL ES and OpenGL SC logos are trademarks of Silicon Graphics International used under license by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

Khronos Finalizes and Releases OpenVX 1.0 Specification 
for Computer Vision Acceleration

Fast, portable, power-efficient vision processing across diverse hardware architectures; Full conformance test suite and Adopters Program immediately available;
Khronos to ship open source OpenVX implementation by end 2014

October 20th, 2014, – The Khronos™ Group today announced the ratification and public release of the finalized OpenVX™ 1.0 specification, an open, royalty-free standard for cross platform acceleration of computer vision applications. OpenVX enables performance and power-optimized computer vision processing, especially important in embedded and real-time uses cases such as face, body and gesture tracking, smart video surveillance, advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), object and scene reconstruction, augmented reality, visual inspection, robotics and more. In addition to the OpenVX specification, Khronos has developed a full set of conformance tests and an Adopters Program, that enables implementers to test their implementations and use the OpenVX trademark if conformant. Khronos plans to ship an open source, fully-conformant CPU-based implementation of OpenVX 1.0 before the end of 2014. The full OpenVX 1.0 specification and details about the OpenVX Adopters Program are available at www.khronos.org/openvx.

OpenVX defines a higher level of abstraction for execution and memory models than compute frameworks such as OpenCL™, enabling significant implementation innovation and efficient execution on a wide range of architectures while maintaining a consistent vision acceleration API for application portability. An OpenVX developer expresses a connected graph of vision nodes that an implementer can execute and optimize through a wide variety of techniques such as: acceleration on CPUs, GPUs, DSPs or dedicated hardware, compiler optimizations, node coalescing, and tiled execution to keep sections of processed images in local memories. This architectural agility enables OpenVX applications on a diversity of systems optimized for different levels of power and performance, including very battery-sensitive, vision-enabled, wearable displays.

“Increasingly powerful and efficient processors and image sensors are enabling engineers to incorporate visual intelligence into a wide range of systems and applications,” said Jeff Bier, founder of the Embedded Vision Alliance. “A key challenge for engineers is efficiently mapping complex algorithms onto the processor best suited to the application. OpenVX is an important step towards easing this challenge.”

The precisely defined specification and conformance tests for OpenVX make it ideal for deployment in production systems, where cross-vendor consistency and reliability are essential. OpenVX is complementary to the popular OpenCV open source vision library that is also used for application prototyping but is not so tightly defined and lacks OpenVX graph optimizations. Khronos has defined the VXU™ utility library to enable developers to call individual OpenVX nodes as standalone functions for efficient code migration from traditional vision libraries such as OpenCV. Finally, as any Khronos specification, OpenVX is extensible to enable nodes to be defined and deployed to meet customer needs, ahead of being integrated into the core specification.

Industry Support

“AMD is an enthusiastic advocate for natural user interfaces enabled by computer vision,” said Greg Stoner, senior director of application engineering, Heterogeneous Applications and Solutions, AMD. “As a proponent of open standards and a provider of highly-parallelized architectures ideal for computer vision, we embrace the OpenVX standard and look forward to standardized proliferation of these experiences throughout the industry.”

“OpenVX will be a great tool for future development of computer vision applications,” said Johan Paulsson, CTO at Axis Communications. “We see excellent potential for making development efforts future-proof by separating algorithms from hardware.”

“Cadence is integrating OpenVX into our Tensilica® Imaging/Vision Library software development kit to enable higher performance and power optimization for our scalable and configurable IVP-EP DSP cores, which are widely adopted for imaging, computer vision and automotive drivers’ assistance applications,” stated Dr. Chris Rowen, CTO of the IP Group, Cadence.

“CEVA applauds the Khronos Group on achieving this important milestone with the release of OpenVX specification,” said Eran Briman, vice president of marketing at CEVA. “With an extensive list of vendors currently sampling their computer vision ICs based on the CEVA-MM3101 DSP and a growing developers community, it is clear that the optimal way to meet the stringent performance and power requirements of computer vision applications is to offload CV processing to a dedicated processor. OpenVX enables this for developers in a seamless manner and we are now integrating it into our CEVA-MM3101 Application Developers Kit (ADK).”

“As one of the first innovators in embedded vision, CogniVue will be supporting a compliant OpenVX implementation for our APEX Image Cognition Processing technology with announcements coming,” said Tom Wilson vice president of product management and marketing at CogniVue.

“We see OpenVX as a promising tailor-made standard tool for developing performant, low-power, while portable computer vision applications for our mobile devices,” said Zhouhong, president of
Central Hardware Engineering Institute, Huawei. “Based on its tightly defined nature, we also see
OpenVX to serve as a standard benchmark suite which can promote the development of ever-more power efficient computer vision accelerators, a component likely to become must-have for coming mobile products.”

“Vision applications will be a defining feature and differentiator for products in a wide range of markets including mobile, smart home, automotive, retail analytics, public safety and more. Imagination’s IP cores including PowerVR GPUs and video processors, Raptor imaging processors and MIPS CPUs are already used in vision applications, and we expect this trend to accelerate,” said Peter McGuinness, director of Multimedia Technology Marketing, Imagination. “We are delighted to be involved with defining the specification for OpenVX 1.0, which we believe is a valuable starting point for accelerating creation and adoption of vision applications.”

“Intel supports and welcomes the adoption of OpenVX as an important element in proliferating computer vision usage models,” said Ofri Wechsler, Intel Fellow. “In fact, Intel has a long history in supporting the development of the computer vision domain spanning the creation of OpenCV more than two decades ago to the active optimization of OpenCV 3.0 for Intel CPUs and Intel Processor Graphics”

“OpenVX enables disrupting computer vision applications that run on low-power mobile and wearable devices,” said Victor Erukhimov, CEO of Itseez, Inc., and chair of the OpenVX working group. “We see it as an optimization layer for many of our projects, from sophisticated middleware for smartphones to advanced driver assistance technologies and mobile 3D scanning.”

“We are excited to contribute to the next generation of computer vision applications,” says A.G.K. Karunakaran, CEO of MulticoreWare. “Our experts are already working with leading device OEMs and semiconductor companies on the development of OpenVX platforms and computer vision libraries that leverage multicore heterogeneous processors including CPUs, GPUs, DSPs, VSPs, and other programmable architectures.”

“Real-time vision processing combined with advanced graphics is inter-twining the real and virtual worlds to enable true visual computing applications,” said Neil Trevett, president of the Khronos Group and vice president of mobile ecosystem at NVIDIA. “NVIDIA is integrating OpenVX into our VisionWorks SDK so GPU-accelerated vision nodes can be easily combined into pipelines for a range of advanced vision applications.”

"Renesas is pleased to take part in the launch of OpenVX that is expected to have a significant impact on the vision application domain," said Masayuki Mizuno, vice president, chief of Incubation Center at Renesas Electronics Corporation. "We believe OpenVX will break new ground in vision applications by introducing graph-based optimization as well as by defining standard vision APIs.”

“Samsung is committed to bringing novel, useful, and fun computer vision applications to our mobile devices. The standard framework of OpenVX lets us develop portable applications for diverse application processors and consumer devices, from tablets and handsets to wearables,” said Mike Polley, senior vice president and head of the Samsung Mobile Processor Innovation Lab. “Samsung encourages the industry to support OpenVX to enable broad availability of computer vision on mobile platforms, allowing Samsung and independent software developers to unlock the potential of our advanced processing architectures and deploy pervasive, revolutionary and efficient computer vision in power-constrained environments.”

“Texas Instruments is committed to enabling advanced vision analytics processing and to support customers to streamline their embedded development,” said Jason Jacob, processor general manager - ADAS, Texas Instruments. “As a member and contributor of the Khronos OpenVX working group and efforts, TI believes the release of the OpenVX specification is a key milestone in enabling Open Standards based embedded compute frameworks to drive a faster adoption rate in the market. Our digital signal processors (DSPs) provide the performance lift and power efficiency for vision analytics and TI will be enabling OpenVX on these architectures.”

“videantis congratulates the OpenVX team on reaching another major milestone,” said Hans-Joachim Stolberg, CEO at videantis. “We see OpenVX as a key open standard that enables efficient acceleration of computer vision algorithms, driving new applications such as automotive driver assistance systems, always-on camera applications, gesture interfaces, 3D capture, and augmented reality. We’re proud to bring support for this new standard to our v-MP4000HDX scalable unified video/vision processor architecture.”

“Vivante is working with leading industry partners to deliver high performance, real time, intelligent vision processing solutions in mobile, automotive and smart security products through our OpenVX based GC7000 VX Series GPUs,” said Wei-Jin Dai, CEO and President of Vivante. “This innovative design enables SoC vendors to use the same processing core for embedded vision acceleration and photorealistic 3D rendering, while keeping power consumption within mobile levels. Through a dynamic VLIW vision instruction set and enhanced shader extensions to achieve single cycle API efficiency, this new GPU Vision approach will allow rapid adoption of vision applications on Vivante OpenVX platforms.”

About The Khronos Group

The Khronos Group is an industry consortium creating open standards to enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics, vision, sensor processing and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices. Khronos standards include OpenGL®, OpenGL® ES, WebGL™, OpenCL™, SPIR™, SYCL™, WebCL™, OpenVX™, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, StreamInput™, COLLADA™ and glTF™. All Khronos members are enabled to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests. More information is available at www.khronos.org.

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Khronos, DevU, StreamInput, SPIR, SYCL, WebGL, WebCL, COLLADA, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenVX, VXU, glTF, OpenSL ES and OpenMAX are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc. ASTC is a trademark of ARM Holdings PLC, OpenCL is a trademark of Apple Inc. and OpenGL is a registered trademark and the OpenGL ES and OpenGL SC logos are trademarks of Silicon Graphics International used under license by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

Khronos Releases SPIR 2.0 Provisional Specification

Open, cross-platform intermediate representation standard for heterogeneous computing now supports portable encoding of OpenCL 2.0 device programs

August 11th, 2014, Vancouver, SIGGRAPH – The Khronos Group today announced the ratification and public release of the SPIR™ 2.0 provisional specification that provides a non-source encoding, and binary level portability, for OpenCL™ 2.0 device programs. SPIR (Standard Portable Intermediate Representation) is the industry's first open, cross-platform Intermediate Representation standard for portable heterogeneous parallel computing and is based on LLVM IR. SPIR enables developers to avoid exposing sensitive kernel source and enables a diversity of language front-ends to easily target OpenCL platforms and devices in addition to OpenCL C. The SPIR specification and registry online.

Before the development of SPIR, new tools and languages for accessing parallel acceleration on heterogeneous systems required specific and detailed knowledge to create compiler back-ends for each vendor's unique hardware architecture. The SPIR standard enables vendors to accept and accelerate SPIR binaries on their hardware, freeing higher-level languages to innovate across a diverse range of platforms including discrete accelerator boards, system on chips, graphics processors and FPGAs. For example, the developers of OpenACC, C++ AMP and Python are targeting SPIR to access optimized back-ends across multiple vendors

SPIR enables a rich ecosystem of compiler middleware for portable parallel programs by building on the strengths of LLVM and OpenCL. SPIR 2.0 is a specialization of LLVM 3.4 IR, but also encodes OpenCL-specific semantics. The cl_khr_spir standard extension to OpenCL 1.2 and 2.0 defines how to load a SPIR instance into an OpenCL runtime. The development of SPIR has been validated on multiple vendor implementations of OpenCL, and has benefited from a thorough open consultation process between Khronos and the LLVM and Clang communities.

The SPIR 2.0 provisional has been released to enable the growing community of OpenCL developers to provide feedback before the specification is finalized. Comments are welcome at the Khronos forum here.

In OpenCL 2.0, host and device kernels can directly share complex, pointer-containing data structures such as trees and linked lists, providing significant programming flexibility and eliminating costly data transfers between host and devices. SPIR 2.0 includes new functionality to fully support new features released in OpenCL C 2.0, including:

  • Generic address space – where functions can be written without specifying a named address space for arguments, especially useful for those arguments that are declared to be a pointer to a type, eliminating the need for multiple functions to be written for each named address space used in an application;
  • Device side kernel enqueue – where device kernels can enqueue kernels to the same device with no host interaction, enabling flexible work scheduling paradigms and avoiding the need to transfer execution control and data between the device and host, often significantly offloading host processor bottlenecks;
  • C++11 atomics – a subset of C11 atomics and synchronization operations to enable assignments in one work-item to be visible to other work-items in a work-group, across work-groups executing on a device or for sharing data between the OpenCL device and host;
  • Pipes - memory objects that store data organized as a FIFO. OpenCL 2.0 provides built-in functions for kernels to read from or write to a pipe, providing straightforward programming of pipe data structures that can be highly optimized by OpenCL implementers.

“AMD continues to support industry standards such as OpenCL and SPIR, which we believe is the right approach for unleashing the full potential of heterogeneous computing,” said Manju Hegde, corporate vice president, Heterogeneous Applications and Developer Solutions, AMD. ”We are excited to see SPIR continuing to evolve to support OpenCL 2.0 and provide an improved platform for other heterogeneous language innovation. SPIR 2.0 provides the industry with a much needed standard binary format with sufficient flexibility to enable compiler and languages vendors with a common cross-platform target.”

"SPIR 2.0 will let tools companies like Codeplay produce tools that allow more languages to be accelerated with heterogeneous processors. The new features of SPIR 2.0 will make it possible to provide very easy to use acceration for a wide range of programming languages," said Andrew Richards, Codeplay.

In addition to the SPIR specification, Khronos is making the following open source software components available on Github under the same license as LLVM and Clang:

  • a modified Clang which generates SPIR from OpenCL C kernel language device programs;
  • a SPIR module verifier, written in the form of an LLVM pass;
  • a SPIR built-ins name mangler, written as a standalone library and executable;
  • a header file containing definitions for all enumerated values in the SPIR specification.

SPIR 1.2 uses Clang/LLVM 3.2 and SPIR 2.0 uses Clang/LLVM 3.4.
Further details on these resources can be found on the Khronos Group github.

OpenCL BOF at SIGGRAPH 2014
Attendees at the SIGGRAPH 2014 Conference in Vancouver are invited to the Khronos OpenCL BOF at 3-4PM on Wednesday 13th at the Marriott Pinnacle Hotel, next to the Vancouver Convention & Exhibition Centre to hear more details around developments in the OpenCL ecosystem. Space is limited and is available on a first-come first served basis. Full details of this and other Khronos developer sessions @ SIGGRAPH are available online.

About The Khronos Group
The Khronos Group is an industry consortium creating open standards to enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics, vision, sensor processing and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices. Khronos standards include OpenGL®, OpenGL® ES, WebGL™, OpenCL™, SPIR™, SYCL™, WebCL™, OpenVX™, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, StreamInput™, COLLADA™ and glTF™. All Khronos members are enabled to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests. More information is available at www.khronos.org.

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Khronos, DevU, StreamInput, SPIR, SYCL, WebGL, WebCL, COLLADA, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenVX, glTF, OpenSL ES and OpenMAX are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc.  ASTC is a trademark of ARM Holdings PLC, OpenCL is a trademark of Apple Inc. and OpenGL is a registered trademark and the OpenGL ES and OpenGL SC logos are trademarks of Silicon Graphics International used under license by Khronos.  All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

Khronos Group Announces Key Advances in OpenGL Ecosystem

Industry leaders align behind latest versions of OpenGL ES, OpenGL and WebGL;
Khronos begins work on next-generation graphics standards

August 11th, 2014, Vancouver, SIGGRAPH – The Khronos Group, an open consortium of leading hardware and software companies, today announced growing industry support for the OpenGL® family of 3D standards that are advancing the visual experience for more than two billion mobile devices and PCs sold each year. OpenGL, OpenGL ES™ and WebGL™ are the world’s most widely deployed APIs that between them provide portable access to graphics and compute capabilities across multiple platforms, including Android, iOS, Linux, OS X, Windows and the Web.

OpenGL ES 3.1 Conformant Implementations
In July, the first wave of leading GPU vendors, including ARM, Imagination Technologies, Intel, NVIDIA and Vivante, achieved full conformance with the latest version of OpenGL ES. A conformance submission from Qualcomm is currently under review, with more to follow. The OpenGL ES 3.1 specification was released in March 2014 and provides the most desired features of desktop OpenGL, including GPU Compute shaders, in a standard that is suitable for mobile devices. Khronos launched the OpenGL ES 3.1 Adopters program in June, including a broad set of conformance tests to ensure reliable cross-vendor operation. More information is here.

Android L uses OpenGL ES 3.1 with AEP
At Google IO in June 2014, Google announced support for OpenGL ES 3.1 in the Android L Developer Preview together with the Android Extension Pack (AEP). AEP is a new set of extensions to OpenGL ES that brings additional desktop-class graphics functionality to Android and enables games to take advantage of tessellation and geometry shaders, and use ASTC texture compression. More information on the functionality of AEP is here.

Pervasive WebGL
WebGL brings powerful GPU access to HTML5. As with any Web standard, pervasive availability across many browsers is the key to providing a commercially relevant deployment platform. Today, all mainstream desktop browsers support WebGL, including Chrome, Firefox, Safari and Internet Explorer, and WebGL support is rapidly being deployed to major mobile browsers. WebGL enables a true industry first: the ability to write high-performance 3D applications that run with zero porting effort on every significant desktop and mobile platform.

OpenGL 4.5 Specification Released
Khronos publicly released the OpenGL 4.5 specification today, bringing the very latest functionality to the industry’s most advanced 3D graphics API while maintaining full backwards compatibility, enabling applications to incrementally use new features. The full specification and reference materials are available for immediate download from the OpenGL Registry. New functionality in the core OpenGL 4.5 specification includes:

  • Direct State Access (DSA) – object accessors enable state to be queried and modified without binding objects to contexts, for increased application and middleware efficiency and flexibility;
  • Flush Control - applications can control flushing of pending commands before context switching – enabling high-performance multithreaded applications;
  • Robustness - providing a secure platform for applications such as WebGL browsers, including preventing a GPU reset affecting any other running applications;
  • OpenGL ES 3.1 API and shader compatibility – to enable the easy development and execution of the latest OpenGL ES applications on desktop systems;
  • DX11 emulation features – for easier porting of applications between OpenGL and Direct3D.

Feedback on any aspect of OpenGL is welcome at the OpenGL forums.

Next Generation OpenGL Initiative - Call for Participation
Khronos announced a call for participation today in a project to define a future open standard for high-efficiency access to graphics and compute on modern GPUs.  Key directions for the new ground-up design include explicit application control over GPU and CPU workloads for performance and predictability, a multithreading-friendly API with greatly reduced overhead, a common shader program intermediate language, and a strengthened ecosystem focus that includes rigorous conformance testing.  Fast-paced work on detailed proposals and designs are already underway, and any company interested to participate is strongly encouraged to join Khronos for a voice and a vote in the development process.

Industry Support for the OpenGL Ecosystem
“OpenGL has played an important role in the growth of mobile, workstation and consumer graphics,” said Raja Koduri, chief technology officer, graphics at AMD. “AMD is tremendously excited to take a contributing role in the Next Generation OpenGL initiative as an evolution of the OpenGL standard aligned with AMD’s vision for low-overhead and multi-threaded graphics APIs.”

“The primary mobile computing device for billions of people is ARM-based, and today our OpenGL ES 3.1-conformant ARM Mali GPUs are delivering a world-leading visual experience,” said Jem Davies, vice president of technology, Media Processing Group, ARM. “Mobile APIs must evolve and the Next Generation OpenGL Initiative will enable developers to get even more value from ARM’s energy-efficient technology.”

“We are super excited to contribute and work with the Next Generation OpenGL Initiative, and bring our experience of low-overhead and explicit graphics APIs to build an efficient standard for multiple platforms and vendors in Khronos,” said Johan Andersson, technical director at Frostbite - Electronic Arts. “This work is of critical importance to get the most out of modern GPUs on both mobile and desktop, and to make it easier to develop advanced and efficient 3D applications - enabling us to build amazing future games with Frostbite on all platforms.”

“Khronos plays a key role in driving global industry-wide multimedia standards, relied upon by our thousands of ecosystem partners as they deliver incredible consumer experiences. As a long-time promoter member of Khronos, we’ve ensured that all of our latest PowerVR Series6 GPU cores - from the smallest GX6240 to the high end 192-core GX6650—are designed to be OpenGL ES 3.1, AEP and WebGL capable,” Tony King-Smith, executive vice president of marketing at Imagination. “We welcome the Next Generation OpenGL Initiative, and have committed significant resources to help Khronos ensure that future generations of the OpenGL family of APIs continue to deliver outstanding capabilities for developers across our extensive PowerVR Insider community.”

“The OpenGL API ecosystem is essential in enabling developers to access GPU capabilities across NVIDIA-powered cloud, workstation, gaming, mobile and Web platforms. NVIDIA is also pleased to release beta drivers for the new OpenGL 4.5 today, enabling developers to immediately try this new functionality on NVIDIA desktop GPUs,” said Neil Trevett, vice president mobile ecosystem at NVIDIA.  “We are also strongly committed to driving the Next Generation OpenGL Initiative to rapidly create the open standards that will prevent market fragmentation, and provide a new level of GPU access to developers across the industry.”

“Mobica is proud to be taking part in the process of designing the new API, which will mark a new milestone in the history of 3D Graphics,” said Jim Carroll, CTO of Mobica. “We look forward to providing support to Khronos in the design process and to assisting our customers once the standard is released.”

“Samsung has provided continual improvements in graphics quality and performance through ever-evolving Khronos standards,” said SVP W.S. Lee, head of UX R&D team at Samsung Electronics. “The new features of OpenGL ES 3.1 and AEP offer even richer gaming experiences on Samsung products, and we are excited by the greater graphics efficiency, developer productivity and user experience enhancements that the Next Generation OpenGL Initiative will bring.”

“TransGaming’s API portability products support the full range of Desktop OpenGL and OpenGL ES versions to date,” said Gavriel State, founder & CTO at TransGaming. “We are excited about the Next Generation OpenGL initiative as we continue to bridge technology gaps between Direct3D and OpenGL APIs. Our ongoing product development across multiple platforms is enabled by the momentum and unity generated behind this open standard.”

“The OpenGL ecosystem provides the bedrock upon which Unity is building next-generation technology, such as WebGL in Unity 5.0, and full OpenGL ES 3.1 support in the near future,” says Aras Pranckevičius, graphics plumber at Unity. “We are thrilled about contributing to the Next Generation OpenGL Initiative. The collaboration of hardware and software vendors in the design process will grant developers higher control, robustness and efficiency.”

“OpenGL is a critical part of enabling developers to bring the best possible products to customers across a variety of platforms,” said Valve’s Gabe Newell. “We are committed to the Next Generation OpenGL initiative and are closely collaborating with Khronos members to create a high-performance rendering interface for SteamOS and future Valve games.”

“Our GC7000 Series with full hardware support of OpenGL ES 3.1, AEP and WebGL have given our ecosystem partners an advanced platform that brings the latest graphics and compute technologies to mobile and consumer devices. These products give developers an advantage in delivering optimized, photorealistic and robust visual experiences and interactive game play,” said Mike Cai, CTO of Vivante. “As a core member of the OpenGL / OpenGL ES working groups, we look forward to contributing to the Next Generation Open GL Initiative and supporting Khronos as they bring their new standard to market.”

OpenGL and OpenGL ES BOF at SIGGRAPH 2014
Attendees at the SIGGRAPH 2014 Conference in Vancouver are invited to the Khronos OpenGL and OpenGL ES BOF at 5-7PM on Wednesday 13th at the Marriott Pinnacle Hotel, next to the Vancouver Convention & Exhibition Centre to hear more details around developments in the OpenGL ecosystem.  Space is limited and is available on a first-come first served basis. Full details of this and other Khronos developer sessions are available on the Khronos SIGGRAPH event page.

 

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Khronos, DevU, StreamInput, SPIR, SYCL, WebGL, WebCL, COLLADA, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenVX, glTF, OpenSL ES and OpenMAX are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc. ASTC is a trademark of ARM Holdings PLC, OpenCL is a trademark of Apple Inc. and OpenGL is a registered trademark and the OpenGL ES and OpenGL SC logos are trademarks of Silicon Graphics International used under license by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

Imagination’s PowerVR Series6 is the first mobile GPU to pass OpenCL 1.2 conformance with Khronos

Bringing highly efficient GPU compute to industry’s leading mobile and embedded GPU

London, UK – 31st March, 2014 – Imagination Technologies (IMG.L) announces its PowerVR Series6 Rogue GPU technology is the first mobile GPU to pass OpenCL 1.2 conformance with Khronos.*

The OpenCL 1.2 standard is an open, royalty-free standard for cross-platform, parallel programming of modern processors in a broad range of devices. PowerVR Series6 GPUs are optimized to enable developers to use OpenCL to access the full processing horsepower of the Rogue architecture.

PowerVR Series6 primarily targets the OpenCL 1.2 EP (Embedded Profile) specification, enabling developers to take full advantage of the rich capabilities in OpenCL 1.2 within the constraints of mobile and embedded form factors. OpenCL 1.2 EP defines a feature-rich subset of OpenCL 1.2 specifically targeting handheld and embedded platforms, which have far more demanding constraints related to power, memory and bandwidth compared to traditional OpenCL platforms such as desktop computers and servers.

Says Peter McGuinness, director of multimedia technology marketing, Imagination: “Imagination is a long-time member of Khronos and a leading contributor to GPU compute standards efforts such as OpenCL 1.2. With OpenCL, developers can run their compute intensive algorithms on highly parallel, scalable, power-efficient PowerVR GPUs used in many of the world’s leading smartphones, tablets and other devices. OpenCL EP is key to realizing maximum GPU compute performance on mobile and embedded devices, as our PowerVR Series6 GPUs are designed for efficiency always keeping power consumption and memory bandwidth to a minimum. We’re working with many leading algorithm and systems partners to utilize the benefits of OpenCL in innovative new products and systems.”

PowerVR Series6 is already integrated in a wide range of end user products, making it the first OpenCL 1.2 conformant mobile GPU to ship in consumer devices.

To learn more about using OpenCL 1.2 with PowerVR Series6 GPUs, developers can join the popular PowerVR Insider community at www.powervrinsider.com.

About PowerVR Graphics
Imagination’s PowerVR graphics technologies are the de facto standard for mobile and embedded graphics. The PowerVR Rogue architecture is designed to support the features of the latest graphics APIs including OpenGL ES 1.1/2/3.0 and beyond, OpenGL 3.x/4.x, and designed for full WHQL-compliant DirectX 9/10, with certain family members extending their capabilities to DirectX 11.1 functionality. PowerVR Rogue GPUs deliver full support for all popular and emerging GPU compute APIs including OpenCL 1.x and Renderscript, delivering an optimal balance of performance versus power consumption for mobile and embedded devices.

Editor’s Note:
  * Conformance submission was achieved on a production PowerVR Series6 G6200 platform running Ubuntu 12.04.  https://www.khronos.org/conformance/adopters/conformant-products#opencl

About Imagination Technologies
  Imagination is a global technology leader whose products touch the lives of billions of people across the globe. The company’s broad range of silicon IP (intellectual property) includes the key processing blocks needed to create the SoCs (Systems on Chips) that power all mobile, consumer and embedded electronics. Its unique software IP, infrastructure technologies and system solutions enable its customers get to market quickly with complete and highly differentiated SoC platforms. Imagination’s licensees include many of the world’s leading semiconductor manufacturers, network operators and OEMs/ODMs who are creating some of the world’s most iconic products. See: www.imgtec.com.

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Imagination Technologies and the Imagination Technologies logo are trademarks of Imagination Technologies Limited and/or its affiliated group companies in the United Kingdom and/or other countries. OpenCL and the OpenCL logo are trademarks of Apple Inc. used by permission by Khronos. All other logos, products, trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Khronos Releases Wave of New Standards

March 19, 2014 – San Francisco, Game Developer’s Conference – The Khronos™ Group today announced a number of new and significant updates to its portfolio of open, royalty free industry standards that enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics, vision, sensor processing and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices:

Registered members of the press are invited to the Khronos Press Conference when Khronos will be providing exclusive access to OpenGL ES 3.1 demonstrations, along with presentations from the work group chairs, and guest analysts David Cole of DFC Intelligence and Jon Peddie of Jon Peddie Research. The event takes place today, Wednesday March 19th at 10:00 AM at Moscone Center in the Khronos meeting room #262 on the West Mezzanine Level, near the press room. Coffee reception precedes the event at 9:30 AM in room #270. Please RSVP to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

“The latest releases of WebCL, SYCL, OpenGL ES 3.1 and EGL reflect the growing demand by developers for open, industry standards that meet the need for cross-platform deployment and innovation,” said Neil Trevett, president of the Khronos Group and vice president of mobile ecosystem at NVIDIA. “Khronos is the ideal forum for creating and driving foundation layer APIs that connect software with silicon and ultimately leads to billions of users experiencing new levels of realism and interactivity on pervasive, mainstream devices.”

“This year DFC significantly raised our forecast for all game platforms, with PC games forecasted to be the largest sector; building on a record high of $23.5 billion in 2013 to $32 billion in 2017. Much of this growth is driven by emerging technology that better enables game developers to reach more users across multiple platforms and devices,” said David Cole, CEO and principal analyst, DFC Intelligence. “Greatly due to the development work done inside Khronos Group, a single game can now be played both on a PC and a mobile device; significantly enhancing the revenue potential.”

“Khronos Group has brought a real dynamism to the standards process. Back in 2000 the mobile industry had started to explode, and the market potential was obvious. There was a sense of urgency to develop OpenGL ES, and Khronos attracted talented people from both industry giants and small companies to get the job done,” said Jon Peddie, President, JPR Tiburon. “We are excited by the continuing development work at Khronos that will result in a blurring of boundaries between mobile and high end graphics platforms.”

GDC 2014 Press Release Summary

The full text of these press releases can be found here: https://www.khronos.org/news/press.

  • OpenGL ES 3.1 Specification: On Monday 17th March, 2014 Khronos released the OpenGL ES 3.1 specification that brings the most desired features of desktop OpenGL 4.4 to developers wanting access to cutting-edge graphics techniques on today’s mobile and embedded devices.
    “OpenGL ES 3.1 provides developers with the ability to use cutting-edge graphics techniques on devices that are shipping today,” said Tom Olson, chair of the OpenGL ES working group and Director of Graphics Research at ARM.
  • WebCL 1.0 Specification: WebCL defines a set of JavaScript bindings to OpenCL™ that enable Web-based applications to harness the computational resources of multi-core CPU and GPUs.
    “Samsung is pleased to have assisted in the creation of WebCL through chairing the WebCL Working Group,” said Tasneem Brutch, chair of the WebCL working group, and director at Advanced Software Platforms, Samsung Research America.
  • SYCL 1.2 Provisional Specification: SYCL is a royalty-free, cross-platform abstraction layer that enables the development of frameworks that build on the underlying concepts, portability and efficiency of OpenCL, while adding the ease-of-use and flexibility of C++.
    “Developers have been requesting C++ for OpenCL to help them build large applications quickly and efficiently and there are lots of useful C++ libraries that want to port to OpenCL and SYCL makes this possible,” said Andrew Richards, CEO at Codeplay and chair of the SYCL working group.
  • OpenCL 2.0 Adopters Program: The OpenCL Adopters Program and conformance test suite enables Khronos members to deliver the cross-vendor consistency required to protect the integrity of the standard in the marketplace. The first OpenCL 2.0 conformant implementations are expected to be released in the first half of 2014.
    “Robust conformance tests are critical to an open standard, as they ensure cross-vendor consistency, and enable protection of the standard,” said Neil Trevett, chair of the OpenCL working group, president of the Khronos Group and vice president of mobile ecosystem at NVIDIA
  • EGL 1.5 Specification: EGL provides the essential interface between Khronos APIs and the underlying window system and this new version includes enhanced rendering flexibility and security, improved interop between OpenGL and OpenCL, and standardized support for multiple operating systems including Android and 64-bit platforms.
    “EGL is in widespread use and is increasingly playing a crucial role in the Khronos ecosystem as it evolves into the central hub for interoperability between multiple APIs on multiple underlying platforms and EGL 1.5 is a significant step to enabling functionality across many platforms including Android, X Windows and Ubuntu-based systems,” said Alon Or-bach, senior software engineer at Samsung Electronics and chair of the EGL working group.

Developer Sessions at GDC 2014

Attendees at the San Francisco Game Developer Conference are invited to attend the Khronos API developer sessions taking place on Wednesday 19th and Thursday 20th March in the Khronos private meeting room (#262 on the West Mezzanine Level). Space at these sessions is limited and is available on a first-come first served basis. A schedule along with details of the APIs and technologies covered in this year’s sessions is available at: http://bit.ly/gdc2014.

About The Khronos Group

The Khronos Group is an industry consortium creating open standards to enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics, vision, sensor processing and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices. Khronos standards include OpenGL®, OpenGL® ES, WebGL™, OpenCL™, SPIR™, SYCL™, WebCL™, OpenVX™, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, StreamInput™, COLLADA™ and glTF™. All Khronos members are enabled to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests. More information is available at www.khronos.org.

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Khronos, DevU, StreamInput, SPIR, SYCL, WebGL, WebCL, COLLADA, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenVX, glTF, OpenSL ES and OpenMAX are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc. ASTC is a trademark of ARM Holdings PLC, OpenCL is a trademark of Apple Inc. and OpenGL is a registered trademark and the OpenGL ES and OpenGL SC logos are trademarks of Silicon Graphics International used under license by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

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