The Variability Expeditions: Exploring the Software Stack for Underdesigned Computing Machines
Speaker: Rajesh K. Gupta, Professor and Qualcomm Endowed Chair in Embedded Microsystems, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, University of California, San Diego
Date: October 19, 2011
Time: 1:10 p.m.
Location: Alliant Energy – Lee Liu Auditorium, Howe Hall
Abstract: Modern computing is ignorant of the variability in the behavior of underlying components from device to device, chip to chip, its wear over time, or the environment in which the computing system is placed. This is a growing problem, as microelectronic devices scale down to molecular assemblies. The ‘guardbands’ used to guarantee component behavior (for power, performance) have gone to ridiculous margins accounting for as much as two-thirds of the chip area to meet performance ‘specs’ and is already undermining the gains from continued device scaling. Changing the way software interacts with hardware offers the best hope to recover the advantages from process scaling. In this this talk, Gupta will describe his approach and progress in the Variability Expeditions project that fundamentally rethinks the rigid, deterministic hardware-software interface, to propose a new class of computing machines that rely on an opportunistic software stack to adapt to the conditions in an underdesigned hardware.
Speaker biography: Gupta is a professor and Qualcomm Endowed Chair in Embedded Microsystems in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD). His research interests are in energy efficient systems. Gupta leads the Microelectronic Embedded Systems Lab and is head of the Embedded Systems Group at UCSD. His recent contributions include SystemC modeling and SPARK parallelizing high-level synthesis, both of which are publicly available and have been incorporated into industrial practice. Gupta has led or co-lead Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency-sponsored efforts under the Data Intensive Systems and Power Aware Computing and Communications programs. Gupta received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, a master’s degree in electrical engineering and computer science from the University of California, Berkeley, and a PhD in electrical engineering from Stanford University. Gupta is a Fellow of IEEE.