Heterogeneous System Architecture

What Does Heterogeneous System Architecture Mean?

Heterogeneous system architecture (HSA) is a particular processor architecture that combines a central processing unit (CPU) and a graphics processing unit (GPU) in order to speed up processes.


Techopedia Explains Heterogeneous System Architecture

The HSA is overseen by the HSA Foundation, which includes enterprises such as ARM Holdings. ARM Holdings pioneered the ARM instruction set architecture, a reduced instruction set (RISC) architecture for efficient processing.

One overarching goal of the HSA is to reduce latency for CPU/GPU operations. In order to do this, programmers have to reorganize the computing system, where traditional systems have a CPU that is separate from a GPU. However, with the use of the HSA, IT experts feel that companies can get closer to some core goals, including reducing power use, getting better battery life for devices and supporting software across a broader spectrum of devices. For example, in tests on facial recognition technologies, the HSA would seem to be a more efficient way to set up hardware.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…