Excellent. While so far only a few games have really used physics to truly change the game (here’s one example), having realistic debris and so on certainly makes for wonderful window-dressing no matter what. Of course, game environments are getting more and more complicated and Ageia hoped to harness the upcoming need for more physics calculation. They were, of course, assimilated by Nvidia and now we’re seeing the fruits of that acquisition.
The upcoming 177.79 Forceware drivers are going to use the GPU as a general purpose calculator for all things physics, with the Ageia PhysX framework providing the guts. Essentially, games that once were to take advantage of PhysX cards can now use CUDA processing on GeForce 8000, 9000, and 200 series cards to do those hardware physics calculations that rock your world. I’m looking forward to it and, having an 8800 GTS, will test it out personally come the 12th and get back to you, faithful readers. If it’s awesome, it might take the edge off of ATI’s recent victories.