Chip design coincidence

Chip design coincidence

Postby LamsonNguyen » Fri Sep 13, 2013 10:40 pm

I stumbled upon this article, and raised an eyebrow when they mentioned using 16 and 64 core chips. I dug around and found the research paper, only to be disappointed when I hit page 7, which mentioned them simulating the multi-core x86 chips. Still, there was a diagram of a 64 core chip that was tiled just like the E64 and a NOC was used as well, so maybe someone needs to be introduced to Parallella. ;)
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Re: Chip design coincidence

Postby aolofsson » Fri Sep 13, 2013 10:53 pm

Well, research is very different from products...There are pros and cons of using simulators vs building chips. The same group at MIT also built a 110 processor chip that was presented at HotChips.

http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/ ... _processor
(100mm^2 in 45nm based on article, I don't have the hotchips slides..).

Compare this to the Epiphany-IV (64 cores in 10mm^2 in 28nm). Certainly not apples to apples, but it does put the Epiphany density in perspective.

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Re: Chip design coincidence

Postby Gravis » Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:44 am

LamsonNguyen wrote:I stumbled upon this article, and raised an eyebrow when they mentioned using 16 and 64 core chips. I dug around and found the research paper, only to be disappointed when I hit page 7, which mentioned them simulating the multi-core x86 chips. Still, there was a diagram of a 64 core chip that was tiled just like the E64 and a NOC was used as well, so maybe someone needs to be introduced to Parallella. ;)

there is a big difference between concept and implementation. if you are thinking the Epiphany is a ripoff of someone else's idea, consider that Intel and AMD both make x86 multicore processors. both concept and architecture are the same but the difference is their implementation. in contrast, the Epiphany is a new core architecture with a similar network design of other manycore processors.

the manycore processor isn't a new concept either, it was invented decades ago. however, it has evolved many times because from what i've seen, there are few kinds of manycore designs: mesh, grid and multithreaded. mesh is every core connected to each other (one or more switches interconnect it), grid communicates only with adjacent cores and multithread uses one pipeline to execute multiple programs. Tilera makes their own manycore mesh-based processors which is conceptually similar to the Epiphany.

the Epiphany processor is another evolutionary iteration of manycore design. in addition to an internal mesh network, the Epiphany processors themselves can be tiled, transparently scaling up to 4095 cores all while sharing a single memory map.

the big advantage that the Epiphany processor has over the Tile64 chips is that it wont cost $400+ to get one.
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Re: Chip design coincidence

Postby LamsonNguyen » Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:10 am

Gravis, not sure how you would think that I would think that Epiphany is a rip-off since this paper was just published, nor the need for a lecture. My intention was not to attack Adapteva, just simply to point out the prevalence of the powers of two, which I had not noticed before. Full disclosure: Programming is a hobby for me and I don't have a formal CS education, but I've read the arch and sdk references. I don't understand everything, for sure, but I'll be re-reading them once I get my boards and getting my hands dirty. So, my lack of posts regarding the more technical matters on the forums doesn't give you the right to dismiss me as an idiot, only as someone less knowledgeable than yourself. :D
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Re: Chip design coincidence

Postby Gravis » Sat Sep 14, 2013 8:06 am

@LamsonNguyen
i was not trying to lecture or dismiss you. i didnt look at your alias, so didn't register in my mind and i thought you were new to the forum (there has been some new blood lately). try reading my post as if it were an article, not something directed to you and you may find it informative (which is how i intended it to be read) rather than disparaging. i help people new to electronics on IRC, so it's not uncommon for me to have to explain certain design concepts and their common use.
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Re: Chip design coincidence

Postby LamsonNguyen » Sat Sep 14, 2013 5:55 pm

It's good that you seek to write to inform people new to electronics, so hats off to you, though I'm sure looking at peoples' aliases would be helpful when replying. :lol:
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