With lowering silicon costs and rising consumer needs, manufacturers seem to be pushing one of two things: clock speed and/or core count. With the way things are going, it doesn't seem that clock speed of processors is rising anymore, but the number of processor cores.
I remember only a few years back, I had a nice fast single-core Pentium 4 processor. Fast-forward to today, and I don't think you can even purchase a single-core processor (not to mention the rising increase in multicore processors even in cellphones). The way things are going, we might find computers with hundreds of cores in a few years (and I know many operating systems already have support for it).
Is it more beneficial to a system's overall performance to increase the clock speed, or increase the number of cores? Assume we're getting into hundreds of cores all running together, or clock speeds ten times higher what we have today (regardless of whether or not that is physically possible).
What are some examples of common processes (e.g. encryption, file compression, image/video editing) that will most benefit from one or another? Are there some processes which can be, but currently aren't (due to technical reasons) sped up by increasing their parallelism?
Assume the hypothetical processor has the exact same core design (word size, address bit width, memory bus size, cache, etc...), so the only variables here are clock speed and core count. And again, I'm not talking about one, two, or even four cores - imagine tens to hundreds.