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Intel's 100-core chip could power intelligent toilet

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IDF Spring 05 Those of you who just do a bit of web surfing, typing and e-mail may be struggling to figure out how to get a little more out of that new 3.6GHz chip. Have no fear. In ten years time, you can try and figure out how to use 100 core processors many, many times more powerful than your current Pentium.

So said Intel senior fellow Justin Rattner today at the Intel Developer Forum. Intel is one of a number of companies turning today's single core processors into dual-core, four-core and then multicore chips. Much of this horsepower is aimed at the server market where some customers clamor for as much juice as possible. Rattner, however, thinks consumers can make use of the technology as well.

"Imagine a home that helps you live a healthy lifestyle," he said, during a keynote address. "It actually monitors you as you live (and) looks for early signs of disease."

So there's Intel's 100-core chip helping your toilet examine the morning delivery for signs of blood or god knows what else. The powerful toilet can call the doctor and schedule an appointment if it notices suspicious stool - checking, of course, with your online calendar for an appropriate time. Or, should you collapse right then and there, the toilet can call for an ambulance. Brilliant!

All kidding aside, such a toilet could be helpful and even witty. Who wouldn't want a reminder like, "Easy, big boy. The 10 oz cut will do next time." in the morning. Or even, "You've got mail and a herpes outbreak."

Intel Inside indeed.

Rattner continued on by promising that future computers will use multi-core chips to deliver voice and sight interfaces beyond today's boring GUI.

"Instead of file not found, (the computer will ask), "Did you mean this or that?" he said. "Much like Google does today but expanded a hundred times."

As always seems to happen in these types of speeches, Rattner was forced to point to today's video gamers as the major users of fast PCs in the consumer market. They'll be the ones loving multi-core chips. What companies like Intel, Dell and Microsoft would do without gamers is beyond us. The futurists sure struggle on their own to talk about anything other than really smart fridges, toasters and walls.

Will these gamers help deliver intelligent toilets to people everywhere? Looks like it. 2015 can't come soon enough. ®

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