Nvidia's new Fermi chip is being billed as a supercomputing chip but Nvidia doesn't want you to forget that it is also aimed at Apple's Snow Leopard and Windows 7.

The Fermi chip was announced with much fanfare on Wednesday as key silicon in a future supercomputer from Oak Ridge National Laboratory. But, wait, Fermi is also going to be great at accelerating stuff in Snow Leopard and Windows 7--not to mention a great gaming chip, according to Bill Dally, chief scientist at Nvidia who spoke during a conference call with analysts on Thursday.

The Fermi graphics processing unit (GPU)--which packs 512 processing cores--will support DirectX-11, a technology for speeding certain multimedia software in Windows 7, and also support an analogous technology in Snow Leopard, OpenCL.

"A lot of (the chip's new) features accelerate key consumer applications. Both Snow Leopard and Windows 7 enable the GPU to be used as a co-processor to accelerate third-party applications," Dally said. With a "discrete (standalone) GPU they can get very good performance on these applications," he said.

Full story: c|net