Graphics Processing Units came to the tech scene as a means to ease and improve the visual display aspect of computers; however, a few decades later, they contribute to much more than graphics. Today they count themselves amongst the critical components in the makeup of some of 2018’s fastest supercomputers. That being said, non-supercomputer enterprises stand to gain from the application of GPUs as well.
The term Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) first became popular during the 90s with the development of the Nvidia GeForce 256. This model became the first consumer-available GPU to include T&L (Transform and Lighting) hardware and contain a cache. Fast forward to the early 2000s, and the concept of the General Purpose Graphics Processing Unit (GPGPU) was in the works. This expansion meant that GPUs would no longer be considered solely for the interpretation and display of images. Instead, it became possible for many data-laden industries to appreciate and apply GPUs to tasks traditionally handled by the CPU.
While some of the benefits of applying GPUs can vary per industry, there are a few central advantages that apply.