DySER: Unifying Functionality and Parallelism Specialization for Energy-Efficient Computing

Venkatraman Govindaraju, Chen-Han Ho, Tony Nowatzki, Jatin Chhugani, Nadathur Satish, Karthikeyan Sankaralingam, Changkyu Kim
2012 IEEE Micro  
Specialization is a promising direction for improving processor energy efficiency. With functionality specialization, hardware is designed for application-specific units of computation. With parallelism specialization, hardware is designed to exploit abundant data-level parallelism. The hardware for these specialization approaches have similarities including many functional units and the elimination of perinstruction overheads. Even so, previous architectures have focused on only one form of
more » ... cialization. Our goal is to develop mechanisms that unify these two approaches into a single architecture. We develop the DySER architecture to support both, by Dynamically Specializing Execution Resources to match program regions. By dynamically specializing frequently executing regions, and applying a set of judiciously chosen parallelism mechanisms-namely region growing, vectorized communication, and region virtualization-we show DySER provides efficient functionality and parallelism specialization. It outperforms an OOO-CPU, SSE-acceleration, and GPU-acceleration by up to 4.1×, 4.7× and 4× respectively, while consuming 9%, 86%, and 8% less energy. Our full-system FPGA prototype of DySER integrated into OpenSPARC demonstrates an implementation is practical.
doi:10.1109/mm.2012.51 fatcat:vhuwzkylqzh7bhwyecd7k2bree