ARM has acquired its Cambridge, UK, neighbor Geomerics, a graphics software firm whose cross-platform flagship product is Enlighten – described by the company as "the only technology capable of computing real-time global illumination on consoles or mobile platforms," and which game developers incorporate into their rendering …
Sounds like a lot of clever assembler programming going on.
Lets hope it will work.
Think lower and faster
ARM will smear the Enlighten gubbins directly onto the processor microcode and hardware.
Re: Think lower and faster
These OpenGL kings have been advising ARM about rendering techniques for a while now. It's all great news for ARM.
Ray-tracing is still a long way off for general real-time computing, but I love this direction towards it.
Their Siggraph papers are very interesting:-
Let's hope this doesn't end up as yet another proprietary ARM GPU with no open source driver support, like PowerVR and Adreno. Mali open source efforts saw pittifully little support from ARM, which necessitated a reverse engineering effort that lead to the as yet incomplete Lima driver implementation.
Ironically, in a twist few could have seen coming, Nvidia opened up their accelerated Tegra driver, thus making Tegra the only complete open source accelerated GPU solution on ARM. It's a shame that Tegra didn't get a mention in the article, especially considering it is in many ways superior to the competition, both technologically and in terms of open source friendlyness.
It falls within your list of GPUs that required reverse engineering but I think pretty much everything about the Raspberry Pi's Broadcom is known now: see http://www.geomerics.com/media/presentations.html