by Calisa Cole

Five years to the week that CUDA was launched, let’s consider just how much has been achieved in this groundbreaking architecture:

  • 350 million CUDA-enabled GPUs have been installed.
  • More than one million downloads have been made of the CUDA Toolkit.
  • 500 universities around the world teach CUDA and GPU computing courses.
  • More than a dozen CUDA books have been written. The most recent is GPU Computing Gems – Jade Edition.
  • 150 institutions are formally recognized as CUDA Centers of Excellence or CUDA Research and Training Centers, fostering close relationships between NVIDIA Research and academia.
  • More than 1,000 people this year alone have participated in GPU Meetups in the U.S., rubbing elbows and learning about GPU technology.
  • The GPU computing ecosystem grows daily, offering up new tools, compilers, codes, applications and research papers covering hundreds of domains.

Industry analyst Rob Enderle summed up CUDA’s importance in an online column. CUDA, he wrote, ”is a platform that could save the world or my life someday…. It is allowing people who otherwise couldn’t afford, or couldn’t get access to supercomputing resources the critical capability to get their work done. The kind of work ranges from medical to environmental research, and the result could be the safety of the human race.”

For CUDA’s five-year milestone, we thought it fitting to catch up with Ian Buck, the inventor of CUDA and NVIDIA’s General Manager for GPU Computing. We interview Ian about the early days of CUDA and what’s on the horizon for GPU computing. Check out the full interview with Ian on CUDA Zone.

At SC11 this week in Seattle, Wash., HPCWire honored CUDA with the “Best HPC Software Product or Technology:  NVIDIA Next-generation CUDA Architecture” award. If you are at SC11 in person, be sure to stop by the NVIDIA GPU Technology Theater and say hello to Ian and the rest of the NVIDIA team. If you can’t make it in person, watch the presentations from your desk or laptop via our Facebook live stream.

The story of GPU computing is just beginning.