THG Siggraph report - Day 1

Los Angeles (CA) - Every year, graphics professionals, video game designers and movie moguls meet for the Siggraph convention. The convention is a mix of "pie in the sky" demonstrations of future technologies and costly movie making hardware and software. Attendees, upon seeing the X-Wing model in the Los Angeles Convention Center lobby, get a sense of Siggraph's theme - creating a new reality from imagination.

Expensive video cards, very expensive solid state drives, and a "talking" robot are some of the exhibits covered in part 1 of our Siggraph coverage.

3D Labs Wilcat Realizm

Rendering realistic models and effects requires a fast graphics card with lots of memory. 3DLabs showed us their new Realizm 500 card that has 256 MByte of GDDR3 memory with a 256-bit wide interface bus. The card supports x16 PCI Express and has a plastic extension that provides stability in a full length slot. The card was recently released and retails for $899.

ATI - Xbox 360

The Xbox 360 is now an ever present fixture at most ATI booths. The Xbox has Three symmetrical cores running at 3.2 GHz each and three vector units. There are unconfirmed rumors flying around the Internet that the Xbox 360 will retail for $299.99 with the games costing $60 each.

Boxx - Super powerful workstations

The upcoming Boxx workstation promises to be a monster. It has four dual-core Opterons with 64 GByte of RAM. The hard-drive capacity can be upgraded to 6 TByte capacity internally. The workstation should be available before the end of the year.

According to Boxx officials, "This workstation is designed to 'kill' choke points in production."

Carnegie Mellon's "Robot" Trickery

In the Emerging Technologies Forum, Carnegie Mellon University has a "robot" at their booth that seems to talk to attendees with amazing speech and understanding. Responding instantly to your questions and sometimes poking fun at what they wear, the robot is actually controlled by a guy sitting in the corner of the booth. The human wears a headset, which lets him hear and talk through the robot.

We will have a video that shows the "robot" in action.