What is OpenCL?
OpenCL™ is the first open, royalty-free standard for cross-platform, parallel programming of modern processors found in personal computers, servers, and handheld or embedded devices. OpenCL (which stands for "Open Computing Language") greatly improves speed and responsiveness for a wide range of applications in numerous market categories from gaming and entertainment to scientific and medical software.
OpenCL supports a wide range of applications, from embedded and consumer software to HPC solutions, through a low-level, high-performance, portable abstraction. By creating an efficient, close-to-the-metal programming interface, we believe OpenCL will form the foundation layer of a parallel computing ecosystem of platform-independent tools, middleware, and applications.
OpenCL was created by the Khronos Group with the support and participation of many industry-leading companies and institutions including 3Dlabs, Activision Blizzard, AMD, Apple, ARM, Broadcom, Codeplay, Electronic Arts, Ericsson, Freescale, Fujitsu, GE, Graphic Remedy, HI, IBM, Intel, Imagination Technologies, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Motorola, Movidius, Nokia, NVIDIA, Petapath, QNX, Qualcomm, RapidMind, Samsung, Seaweed, S3, ST Microelectronics, Takumi, Texas Instruments, Toshiba, and Vivante. Fixstars is also a part of the standardization group and is actively involved in the specification process.
Benefits of Using OpenCL
Development of Highly Portable Applications
By developing applications using the parallel processing API (the freely available OpenCL API), you can achieve a high level of portability and significantly reduce costs when switching hardware.
Through lower-level OpenCL functions accessible via the API, OpenCL allows you to get great performance out of your hardware while still maintaining portability.