Advanced Micro Devices announced yesterday the completion of their ATI acquisition and made the most of it by also announcing the development of a new project code-named "Fusion". This project is working towards achieving a new breed of chips that integrates the central processing unit with the GPU. These "Fusion" processors will provide step-function increases in performance-per-watt when compared with present architecture, according to AMD.

"With the anticipated launch of Windows Vista, robust 3D graphics, digital media and device convergence are driving the need for greater performance, graphics capabilities, and battery life," said Phil Hester, AMD senior vice president and chief technology officer. "In this increasingly diverse x86 computing environment, simply adding more CPU cores to a baseline architecture will not be enough. As x86 scales from palmtops to petaFLOPS, modular processor designs leveraging both CPU and GPU compute capabilities will be essential in meeting the requirements of computing in 2008 and beyond."

The Fusion processors will continue to support graphics cards and physics accelerators, which is great because it leaves the door open for future upgrades.