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FIEA Developers Rate Intel® Solid-State Drives an A+: Article

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Sometimes engineers just have to see for themselves. They can read the specs and study the numbers, but until they actually perform experiments in a lab setting, they tend to be doubters. Various marketing literature and anecdotal evidence may suggest that solid-state drives are faster than conventional rotating drives, but maybe those tests were in uncommon configurations that don’t equate to real-world settings. Or maybe the testers were biased.
It turns out that, based on easily duplicated tests taken from throughout the game-development process, Intel® Solid-State Drives (Intel® SSDs) offer performance improvements from top to bottom. Access times for standard, spinning hard-disk drives average about 5 to 10 milliseconds (ms), mostly because those heads have to move and wait for the data to rotate into position beneath the read/write head. Solid state drives feature access times around 0.1 ms. The drives access data directly from the flash memory, resulting in dramatic speedups.
Recently, a team of promising graduate students from the Florida Interactive Entertainment Academy (FIEA) received a gift of Intel SSDs to perform rigorous testing against conventional hard drives. The team had recently completed an exhausting, eight-month, game-development exercise that resulted in a solid, professional-quality game demo.

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