We can’t say who did it. Or exactly how. But we can tell you this: It didn’t involve aliens.

We can also tell you why we hired some of the world’s best crop circle artists to put an image of our latest mobile processor in a barley field near Salinas, California, two hours south of San Francisco.

We simply couldn’t think of any other way to explain that our new Tegra K1 processor, with 192 graphics cores, can do things no other technology — on this planet, at least — could.

Those energy-sipping graphics cores put an unbelievable amount of power into an incredibly tiny package. They use the same Kepler architecture used to accelerate some of the world’s most powerful supercomputers, and power the graphics chips embedded in our top-of-the-line GeForce GTX graphics cards.

They can also tap into the same CUDA parallel computing platform used by scientists to simulate the streams of interstellar particles that blast out from the cores of galaxies and black holes.

Some of the possibilities seemed right out of science fiction. Like advanced robotic vision systems that can be slipped into mainstream cars. Or PC-caliber graphics running on devices you can slide into your pocket.

So, when our Tegra team tried to figure out how to tell this story – in a creative way – they kept returning to a simple theme: How impossibly advanced this stuff is. So advanced, it seemed otherworldly.

That’s when we reached out to a team of crop circle experts. They flew in after Christmas and quickly headed to a dusty field in an effort our marketing team dubbed “Project 192,” — a reference to the number of graphics cores in K1.

The field’s owner had planted the barley, as many farmers do, to be plowed under, renewing the land. Meanwhile, it provided the perfect canvas for our crop circle specialists who drove out to the site accompanied by our team. They worked quickly.

When the morning arrived, it wasn’t long before a crowd began to gather. Word spread, fast.

While we were hoping to get the word out — we even created a video showing the crop circle’s discovery to spread the mystery and the fun — we didn’t realize how big this thing would get. The story quickly went global, with websites and television stations as far away as Mongolia and Hungary reporting the story.

More than a few people told reporters they had a simple explanation for what they saw: aliens. And when the circle was plowed under by the farm’s owner, one commenter on a story posted to CNN even fretted that we just plowed under an integrated circuit more advanced than anything made by man.

newscaps
An image of our latest Tegra processor left in a California barley field sparked a worldwide guessing game.

Many others, however, noticed a clue, hidden in the pattern: The number 192 represented in the clock positions of the spheres in “orbit” around the circle, and repeated over and over again, in Braille.

We decided not to step forward too quickly. Puzzle lovers — many of them our fans — were having too much fun with this.

What could it mean? Did the number refer to some sort of artifact with previously unseen power? Did it have anything to do with the 192 GPU cores we announced would be in our next-generation mobile processor, at the SIGGRAPH graphics industry conference back in July?

In a word: yes.

  • Jeffery Longa

    Ya this thing is really cool.

  • singingcowboy674

    Wow. I guess I did use a lot of “thees” and “thous” and “shalt”s and the like. Huh. Sorry if you didn’t understand the words I used. You see if you are keeping up with the comments, you will note Pat thought my comment toward him lacked meaningfulness. Structure. I merely provided what he asked. I’m sorry if you could not understand the big words. It’s hard to get one’s point across limiting the length of the words used to 3 and 4 letters. Sorry. Can’t please everybody.

    And out of all that I wrote all you can gripe about is the perceived “stupidness” of Unidentified Flying Obejectology (which I hate to break it to you isn’t a word but I’ll allow it) based on a uninformed view of what it is? Which I’m guessing you are equating to “ufology”. Your description of “what makes it stupid” reveals the limited scope of your knowledge of the field. Maybe you are just Pat’s mama or big sister trying to look out for him. lol I would suggest some familiarization with the subject before engaging in anymore “banter”.

    Remember the old saying…..

    “Better to be thought a fool than to open one’s mouth and remove all doubt.”

  • Marcus

    “We can’t say who did it. Or exactly how.” And then they show them making it in the video with interviews with the artists.

  • Marcus

    I’m glad you are not using nvidia anymore. However, they probably paid the farmer a fairly substantial amount of money to use his field. I’m sure he’s happy about it.

  • Jeffery Longa

    Well if I appear to think I’m intellectually superior you’re glowing with a superiority complex in your transcendence from a different threshold of thought. Because that doesn’t sound condescending in any way whatsoever. So how about this. You believe in them I assume, I hold that I do not know if we have been visited because from what I have observed from astronomers, scientists, which includes a certain astrophysicist, there is not enough evidence toward the notion we have been visited. On top of that we know what it takes mathematically to go from this planet to the closest one that can sustain life, not to say that particular planet even has life so the distance to travel becomes much further.

    So how about this, why don’t you and your enlightened intellect give me your best empirical evidence, no anecdotal bullshit. That means no eyewitness testimony, no strange occurrence that went unexplained so aliens were pegged to it, and no blurry recording or photo that could easily be reproduced. Now enlighten me.

  • singingcowboy674

    You have to understand my ire is not drawn in the way you think. I understand your points and I tend to agree, based only on what we know “for a fact”, according to mainstream science. What chapped me is your word “stupid”. While you may have been calling the study itself stupid, by proxy, at least in my opinion, you were calling those who study the phenomena stupid as well. Thus leading me to believe you believed yourself intellectually superior based simply on the fact that you would insinuate that people with a different opinion on the matter, other than what you hold were likely challenged in their intellect. Apologies if that was a mistake. Words in text do not translate the tone in which they were meant to be read. It seemed as you were chiming in more so on Patrick’s side, where he had been in much more mockery than you, I suppose my aggravated attitude with him jumped off onto you. As I was operating in a defense mode when our conversation began. Apologies if I took you wrong from the beginning.

    I personally do not know exactly what is going on as well. I did feel myself intellectually superior had you been closed minded saying unequivocally “No. There is none.” as I believe open mindedness or the admission of “maybe” or “could be” or “I don’t know” is superior to someone who doesn’t have enough information either way and yet says they know beyond a shadow of a doubt and those who differ from their stance are foolish. I do hope that is not too big headed of me. I’m not a snob by any means. As well a “live and let live” kind of person. But I am quick to jump in if I feel someone is being bullied or being a bully themselves. I do not believe it is right to ridicule either side. I have seen enough evidence to know that there is SOMETHING that is not as we are being led to believe. Though I’m not in possession of that to present it to you. In fact I cannot prove their existence. But looking at anecdotal evidence and so many eye witness reports on things, as well so many whistle blowers who risked and often lost their lives for what they claimed to know; I think we owe it to them to give them the benefit of the doubt that “we the people” are not privy to what “they our government” as well as private foundations that work in tandem with gov’ts, who are either under gag order from disclosing information; OR desire to keep the technology discovered to themselves, than what we are allowed to know.

    I’m sure that you are aware of the premise that the government has a 20 year buffer on all new tech. Or it used to be around that. What we see in the private sector is leaked. So imagine if we double what we know every 6 months and our government (via military or intelligence) has a hold on things that they consider “proprietary” or for the use of itself as to not allow our enemies to catch wind of it, which I think is a reasonable; imagine how much our gov’t keeps from us. As well, it is not outside the realm of consideration that, should our gov’t be in possession of tech from “aliens” or are privy to their existence empirically themselves. they would likely not release this information to the general public. They would have a legitimate concern about people’s reactions as far as fear goes. But as is also the case, were the government to allow it known, again, empirically; that there was an advanced civilization of non-terrestrial origin who would likely have to be of greater technology; the gov’t would likely lose it’s ability to govern the masses. Many, many, many people feel oppressed by gov’ts. Even our own. So if there were a more advanced civilization that was in communication or coming in close proximity with our land mass and people, that would really threaten the gov’t itself. “I don’t have to listen to you!” kind of deal. It’s also a consideration that they may believe them to be hostile and therefore to avoid public collapse, they keep it under wraps.

    I’m not saying that either is the case. But I am saying that we know the gov’t does not TRULY answer to “we the people” at least in every facet. And there is motive to hide things like that. Be it money, power, etc. As well there is means to keep things secret. With all these bases that are “shoot on sight” more or less, nobody other than those sworn to secrecy or who are “in on it” could ever know about it. So you have motive, and means. Opportunity I’m not sure how it would be established as far as in a court of law goes. But you get my point.

    I personally believe that “they” are where we got our more advanced technology. Not that humans aren’t smart enough. Rather the jump in tech that has occurred since the 40s is monumental. As to their origin. I don’t know. Are they from outer space? Like you said, we can’t do it by our math (not to say that if they are far more advanced that they would probably not likely be constrained to our set of laws) but just throwing it out there, what if they are trans-dimensional? The word “universe” is an oxymoron. “Uni” is “one” or “singular” but “-verse” if I’m not mistaken indicates plurality.

    See, used to, philosophers were looked at as the forerunners of new science. Now they are scoffed at as dreamers it seems. “If you can’t see it, smell it, taste it, touch it, hear it or measure it, it doesn’t exist. If you think it does then you are stupid.” (My interpretation of much of mainstream science as a whole.)

    Here’s what I think. I think we are advanced for being the primitive people that we are. We have got the tip of the ice berg figured out. But there is much more beyond that that we have not even yet begun to fathom. And our best would likely not be able to conceptualize it in their brain enough to understand it, even if they were shown step by step. It’s like we are in second grade and we have learned our multiplication tables. And that’s good for our level of advancement. But compared to the astrophysicist, in second grade, you’ve got a long way to go. And if that astrophysicist came into that classroom and started talking to them about it and trying to give them lessons, they would have no ability to grasp it. Because it is an advanced set of calculations that is built upon and built upon. They are laying the foundation while Astrophysicist is explaining the view from the top of a sky scraper. Their world is not that big yet to even begin to understand what he is explaining. But yet we are extremely proud of ourselves and are taking our multiplication tables home to mom and dad. The problem is that many of these “2nd grade level scientists” are full grown men with egos and pride and peer authority and they believe that for the most part they know for certain what can and cannot be because they feel they have reached the pinnacle of scientific knowledge. :)

    Sorry. Brevity is not my strong suit.

  • Brian Caulfield

    Hey everybody – We value your feedback, even if it’s given in a very blunt way, but please refrain from personal attacks directed at others commenting here… or their mothers (those comments will be deleted). Many thanks!

  • Brian Caulfield

    Update: we’ve now deleted one comment, but that involved a very personal comment about another commentator’s mother. Your comment has not been deleted.

  • Brian Caulfield

    Many thanks for your feedback!

  • Brian Caulfield

    Wow. That’s just awesome.

  • T-Squared

    I suddenly feel reluctant to support a company that traffics in hoaxes. Especially when that money would have been better spent on the research and development of more superior hardware. Hey nVidia, since your dumping your money in the garbage, I would appreciate it if you could wire a healthy sum to my savings. Shoot me an email and I’ll provide you with the proper routing information.

  • T-Squared

    They are already here bro. They’re using the “black oil” alien virus to overthrow us from within. But there are a group of alien rebels, fighting on our behalf, who oppose this sinister plot. Thank the lord Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny are still around, otherwise you would surely be doomed.

  • Juniar Vdaya

    interesting marketing approach, although I didn’t see what k1 do on video.

  • sol emp

    AMD rules / Nvidia sux

  • Byrnan Greenleaf

    So you aren’t impressed by creativity and intelligence in marketing and product design…. I’m not impressed by your method of choosing products to sell in your shop. I’ve found NVidia graphics cards to be much more dependable and need to be replaced less often to keep up with gaming needs than competitors graphics cards. If I ran a retail store I wouldn’t lose money over my opinions on a company’s marketing campaign.

  • Byrnan Greenleaf

    How is it a hoax if they admitted to doing it? How do you not know that crop circles being an alien invention is the hoax? Certainly aliens have better things to do with their time than flattening crops to form shapes and patterns after travelling the vast distances between planetary systems. And why would they have their marketing department stop working on new marketing to answer questions about it when an informed moderator can answer them?

  • disqus_kH68ytLCeC

    More of a claim than an admission, I’d say. It boggles the mind as to why exactly one would presume to know how ‘aliens’ prioritise their time. The assumption that any form of interplanetary travel may be necessary in order to create a crop circle is also misguided. As for the marketing department at NVIDIA, it would appear that Mr. Caulfield is indeed a PR spokesperson for the brand.

  • Brian Caulfield
  • DonMrLenny .

    such a stupid way for marketing campign,to stomp on belifes of other people,be sure that im not gonna buy one of your graghic cards to my next computer

  • macek677

    How NVIDIA explain then strange light night before that crop circle appeared?
    New tech? Military help? Satellites burning into crop circles? Exotic weapons?
    This is not making any sense,

    maybe the crop circle was made to warn us

  • macek677

    “as long as they did not break any laws”
    They did it on some ones crop, without even asking, youtube what this poor farmer had to say about all this.

  • Mckiller

    you solved the riddle Ken, great search. great job Nvidia. congratulations. I appreciated all this chat but confess disapointment in this surprise. cropcirclemakers is the greatest xiters of all times.. needed fix my punkbuster this time. :} Brian you got a mess this time.