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    ICE team programmer: tiling/detiling 10 to 100x faster

    Sony’s ICE team programmers are basically a bunch of talented developers that*work on the core graphics technologies for the PS4. One such developer is*Cort Stratton who is a senior programmer on Sony’s ICE Team.

    On his Twitter feed he revealed a few interesting tid-bits about PlayStation 4 games development and how his recent contributions will make things run faster.

    “Finally wrote that ASM I was looking forward to. Early results: PS4 surface tiling/detiling on the CPU is ~10-100x faster now. SIMDlicious!.” he*Tweeted.

    Let us go in detail into what each term actually means.

    An ASM is a programming language that has a strong level coupling between the language and architecture machine code. This language is specific to one architecture [in this case the PS4's architecture] compared to high level programming languages which can be used across several architecture/devices. Basically this language gives more control over performance since the developer will essentially write code for one specific device.

    Tiling is essentially dividing an image by a grid so that limited rendering is used in creating a scene. This process is performed by the CPU [all modern architectures use hardware to accelerate this process]. Once the geometry is decided for the tiles, the GPU then renders each of them to memory buffer.

    SIMD [single instruction, multiple data]. As the name indicates, SIMD is essentially performing single instruction across several data points. Almost all modern CPU comes packed in with SIMD instructions for an increase in multimedia performance .

    So essentially, Stratton wrote a code that will push tile performance on the PlayStation 4′s CPU by 10-100 times faster. *Note that improvement in performance will result into tiles being switched faster which also means less processing time. But the developer also needs to use the appropriate tile size since larger tiles will obviously use more processing time. It’s a balance, you see.

    He also revealed that the previous code was bad and was a just copy reference from the hardware documents. “It was pretty bad. Pretty much a copy of the reference code from HW docs, evaluated in full per fragment with a memcpy at the end,” he*tweeted.

    “(plus an awful memory access pattern; I needed to restructure things to write full cache lines),” he*continued, referencing his approach towards tiled*rendering.

    [memcpy is a C++ function that is used to copy the values of bytes from source to the memory block pointed by the destination.]

    Given that*Stratton has*contributed*in developing PS3′s*SPU rendering code to several games such as the Uncharted and Grand Theft Auto series, it’s most likely going to be used for future PS4 titles. *But remember, as he mentions this is still an early version and things might improve even further in the future.
    And optimization continues..


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    So another xbox secret sauce rumor debunked. It was rumour that only X1 can do tiling.


    Even though we all knew it was bs from beginning.

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    Whoah. So I guess it won't be static then (how could it be?) and will only continue to grow/widen the gap.

    At least for 1st parties anyway.
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    Quote Originally Posted by AttackTitan View Post
    So another xbox secret sauce rumor debunked. It was rumour that only X1 can do tiling. Even though we all knew it was bs from beginning.
    Yep exactly, never sell the ICE Team short. And so the PS4 hardware is moving forward instead of standing still until the Xbone can catch up. What a shocker. lol And yeah so much for the tiling that supposedly only Xbone can do or the theory that Sony wont be able to move the hardware performance very far like MS can. Lots of crow being eaten right now.
    Last edited by mistercrow; 03-05-2014 at 01:25.

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    If I have learned anything about the Japanese, there's nothing they can't do. I have proof:
    http://youtu.be/WIKqgE4BwAY

    See?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mistercrow View Post
    Yep exactly, never sell the ICE Team short. And so the PS4 hardware is moving forward instead of standing still until the Xbone can catch up. What a shocker. lol And yeah so much for the tiling that supposedly only Xbone can do or the theory that Sony wont be able to move the hardware performance very far like MS can. Lots of crow being eaten right now.
    I don't think there was any real doubt that it couldnt be done. It was more of extremely silly notion by some people from Xbox camp that Xbox One will be optimized while PS4 wont.

    It was most ridiculous, desperate hope they had. Now it is time for them to eat this.

    Last edited by AttackTitan; 03-05-2014 at 01:48.

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    Hey I call bull$#@!! I was told by the internet that only one next gen console was going to advance while the other stood still

    Sent from my SM-N900T using Tapatalk

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    and this is why i was jumping up and down trying to say why in-house development matters.

    the best possible thing you can do in any sort of efficiency/optimization scenario in a business is to have forward and backward integration. which means that you control what's in front of you and what's behind you...there's no middle man, no boss, no delegate.

    it's hell of a lot more efficient that way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AttackTitan View Post
    So another xbox secret sauce rumor debunked. It was rumour that only X1 can do tiling.


    Even though we all knew it was bs from beginning.
    This isn't that tiling, but yeah both GPU's can handle virtual textures/tilings.

    As for the article, yeah cache hit timings etc are something devs will continue to improve on.

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    Sony has a recipe for success and it's time to cook. ICE team were there every step of the way of the PS4's design and know exactly what's under the hood as: "The ICE Team has been involved with the development of the PlayStation®4 since its inception, including hardware design, graphics libraries, performance analysis tools, and developer support (hardware evangelism)."

    This is just the beginning and a big part of why Cerny called the PS4 a "super charged" machine that would evolve to become more powerful over time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mistercrow View Post
    Yep exactly, never sell the ICE Team short. And so the PS4 hardware is moving forward instead of standing still until the Xbone can catch up. What a shocker. lol And yeah so much for the tiling that supposedly only Xbone can do or the theory that Sony wont be able to move the hardware performance very far like MS can. Lots of crow being eaten right now.

    Yeah, I've been preaching about the Tiling resources issue for a while.

    The funniest part is MS's goal is to get tiling optimized for the 32MB eDRAM cache ... and the PS4 can set up multi targeted parallel tiles and so things in symphony, while the XB's speed ups would have to come in serial... Ultimately they want to somehow move things done in DDR3 in symphony ( a world often used by the artistic for what technical might call parallel , translated for those who might say i'm throwing bull$#@! words around) and have the final pipelines moved into the eDRAM ... ultimately, as you just read, ANY tech advance is going to be faster and better on the PS4... imagine something that mildly speeds up the XBO DRAMATICALLY speeding up the PS4?

    This puppy has been put to bed, despite the XBO Crusaders carrying their torches blindly. You have the second rate system, it's a done deal. You have TitanFall, how is it? Did it revolutionize gameplay at all (quick answer is no, give me Tribes).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lefein View Post
    If I have learned anything about the Japanese, there's nothing they can't do. I have proof:
    http://youtu.be/WIKqgE4BwAY

    See?
    That is one of the weirdest things I've ever seen. A trio of basically 13 year old J-pop idol singers fronting a Japanese thrash metal band, according to Wiki they're calling it "kawaii metal." Only in Japan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lefein View Post
    If I have learned anything about the Japanese, there's nothing they can't do. I have proof:
    http://youtu.be/WIKqgE4BwAY

    See?
    That is one of the weirdest things I've ever seen. A trio of basically 13 year old J-pop idol singers fronting a Japanese thrash metal band, according to Wiki they're calling it "kawaii metal." Only in Japan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Venger View Post
    That is one of the weirdest things I've ever seen. A trio of basically 13 year old J-pop idol singers fronting a Japanese thrash metal band, according to Wiki they're calling it "kawaii metal." Only in Japan.
    I wonder if they've been to Otakon?
    I haven't been every year sadly.
    Sleeping very soundly on a Saturday morning I was dreaming
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    Crazy
    Stone cold crazy, you know

  23. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by AttackTitan View Post
    I don't think there was any real doubt that it couldnt be done. It was more of extremely silly notion by some people from Xbox camp that Xbox One will be optimized while PS4 wont.

    It was most ridiculous, desperate hope they had. Now it is time for them to eat this.
    Pretty much. I had no doubts that the XB1 devs will make strides.

    But not applying that same logic to the PS4; people were either wishfully thinking, lapse in thinking, or being disingenuous.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Admartian View Post
    Pretty much. I had no doubts that the XB1 devs will make strides.

    But not applying that same logic to the PS4; people were either wishfully thinking, lapse in thinking, or being disingenuous.
    cognitive dissonance/bias and choice-supportive bias all rolled into one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Admartian View Post
    Pretty much. I had no doubts that the XB1 devs will make strides.

    But not applying that same logic to the PS4; people were either wishfully thinking, lapse in thinking, or being disingenuous.
    I call that selective reasoning.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sufi View Post
    cognitive dissonance/bias and choice-supportive bias all rolled into one.
    That too. The bias part is usually what causes the selective reasoning.

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    supportive-choice bias is pretty much selective reasoning. i think selective reasoning is part of it.

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    PSU PSych 100/101 courses starting now!!!

    Either way, it means next gen PS4 games will continue to make strides. Much like when we saw Genji/R1 (while the former was considered a bad game, it was a good gfx showcase for launch for the PS3) and comparing them to what we have now.

    Though imagining KZSF and/or BF4 etc looking better? Wow. Heck even games like Witcher 3 MGS5 are already looking tops.

    Plus games like The Order 1886 and other future exclusives will only benefit (going by history at least).
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    @psych. lol tell me about it. though people have told me that i should've become a psychologist or a psychiatrist (if i could live through med school) because all i think about is human behavior and have for years. i also like electronics but i ended up in business *shrugs* i might have basic psych knowledge but there's a lot of it there *pats self* *gives self cookie*

    genji? lol i never thought that looked anything special. BF4, i was already disappointed with, but i'm content with it now after playing with it for a while. it's ok. i was expecting the graphics we saw in the demo, what i got was an update over the PS3 graphics. not a generational difference.

    MGS looks good but nothing special. sorry, i'm just a little harsh. to me, destiny looks like what should be considered next-gen. it's not only huge, it has a lot of details as well.

    these are filler titles we're seeing right now, they're good enough for launch. that's it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sufi View Post
    @psych. lol tell me about it. though people have told me that i should've become a psychologist or a psychiatrist (if i could live through med school) because all i think about is human behavior and have for years. i also like electronics but i ended up in business *shrugs* i might have basic psych knowledge but there's a lot of it there *pats self* *gives self cookie*

    genji? lol i never thought that looked anything special. BF4, i was already disappointed with, but i'm content with it now after playing with it for a while. it's ok. i was expecting the graphics we saw in the demo, what i got was an update over the PS3 graphics. not a generational difference.

    MGS looks good but nothing special. sorry, i'm just a little harsh. to me, destiny looks like what should be considered next-gen. it's not only huge, it has a lot of details as well.

    these are filler titles we're seeing right now, they're good enough for launch. that's it.
    you are harsh!

    Destiny, at least from what I've seen, is more less what we've seen already.

    My main point was, if these games already look as good as they do now, it is exciting to think what they will be.
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    Speaking of psych, why are you guys talking about tiling resources which is GPU based, in an article that has nothing to do with it?

    And is this some sort of revelation that devs get better with hardware as time goes on?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Admartian View Post
    you are harsh!

    Destiny, at least from what I've seen, is more less what we've seen already.

    My main point was, if these games already look as good as they do now, it is exciting to think what they will be.
    oh of course, i can't even fathom yet. it's already surprassed my expectations somewhat.

    i don't know what to expect at this point.

    oh no, i didn't think much of destiny until i actually saw the storyline trailer and dev diary videos that show the game in more detail. the gameplay we saw at E3 was lame. also did not look anything special.

    now, you're right, they haven't shown anything yet that we haven't seen and i agree there...but just the whole concept as far as how big the game is going to be, how long it will be supported and how good it looks from those particular videos...you have to check it out. go to your PS store and look for it there, i promise you that you will find them at least interesting.

    i was somewhat blown away but i still have questions about the gameplay.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mynd View Post
    Speaking of psych, why are you guys talking about tiling resources which is GPU based, in an article that has nothing to do with it?

    And is this some sort of revelation that devs get better with hardware as time goes on?
    NO one said it was a revelation - it was speculating on the excitement and possibilities from the outcome.

    Is that okay?
    Quote Originally Posted by Sufi View Post
    oh of course, i can't even fathom yet. it's already surprassed my expectations somewhat.

    i don't know what to expect at this point.

    oh no, i didn't think much of destiny until i actually saw the storyline trailer and dev diary videos that show the game in more detail. the gameplay we saw at E3 was lame. also did not look anything special.

    now, you're right, they haven't shown anything yet that we haven't seen and i agree there...but just the whole concept as far as how big the game is going to be, how long it will be supported and how good it looks from those particular videos...you have to check it out. go to your PS store and look for it there, i promise you that you will find them at least interesting.

    i was somewhat blown away but i still have questions about the gameplay.
    My first impressions of it being a an online thing put me off. Not saying it or any other heavily focused MP-games are bad - far from it, but when those features are emphasised to that point I switch off.

    Especially with no bot mode or other co-op type mode (like Special Ops etc) like KZ or even CoD.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Admartian View Post
    NO one said it was a revelation - it was speculating on the excitement and possibilities from the outcome.

    Is that okay?

    My first impressions of it being a an online thing put me off. Not saying it or any other heavily focused MP-games are bad - far from it, but when those features are emphasised to that point I switch off.

    Especially with no bot mode or other co-op type mode (like Special Ops etc) like KZ or even CoD.
    that's cause it's an official MMO game they don't have any offline features because that would encourage people to not play online...that's what i presume.

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