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cycle of reincarnation

cycle of reincarnation: [coined by Ivan Sutherland ca. 1970] n.
   Term used to refer to a well-known effect whereby function in a
   computing system family is migrated out to special-purpose
   peripheral hardware for speed, then the peripheral evolves toward
   more computing power as it does its job, then somebody notices that
   it is inefficient to support two asymmetrical processors in the
   architecture and folds the function back into the main CPU, at
   which point the cycle begins again.  Several iterations of this
   cycle have been observed in graphics-processor design, and at least
   one or two in communications and floating-point processors.  Also
   known as `the Wheel of Life', `the Wheel of Samsara', and other
   variations of the basic Hindu/Buddhist theological idea.  See also
   blitter, bit bang.