Wednesday, January 29, 2014

competition for energy-efficient computing (image recognition)

This figure shows the idea of the competition. The inputs will be a set of images. The score is the ratio of the accuracy and the amount of energy consumed. The participants have the freedom to offload computation.

The competition will be held in 2015 with a major conference (one candidate is IEEE International Symposium on Circuits and Systems in June). The winner must be able to recognize or classify at least half of the images (i.e. the accuracy must exceed 50%).
  • first prize is a cash award of USD$5,000
  • second prize $3,000
  • third $2,000. 
The participants will receive a set of training data at least one month in advance.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

questions for energy efficiency in Rebooting Computing 2

Hello, Everyone,

The RC (rebooting computing) committee gave me the tasks of writing a
set of questions to discuss for the blogger as well as the next RC
Summit.  Here is my first attempt.  Please feel free to comment and
change the list.  Thank you.

What technologies have the potential replacing CMOS?  Where are they
standing now?  What are the likely timelines?

Will Boolean logic be replaced?  What are the candidates?

Will future computers be hybrid, including some parts that can produce
precise answers (number crunching) and some parts that produce
approximate answers (such as recognition)? 

Will it be possible to power most of the "edge devices" (sensors,
mobile phones, tablets) by ambient energy sources?  If so, how?  If
not, why? 

What is the theoretical minimum energy for computing, communication,
and storage? 

Let me further define the units of computing, communication,
and storage.

One unit for computing is one double-precision floating-point

One unit of communication is sending 1MB and receiving 1MB data
(excluding headers) for wireless: 10 meters away; for wires or fiber:
100 meters away.

One unit of storage is saving 1MB data (without metadata).

What is the state of the art in the energy consumption for computing,
communication, and storage?

What is the distance between the theoretically minimum and the current
state of the art?

What are the barriers reducing the distances?

How are different power management solutions evaluated? Do you think
future electronics should have "energy counters" that can report their
energy consumption?  Would this accelerate the research and innovation
improving energy efficiency?

Is it possible to develop "energy benchmarks" (similar to performance
benchmarks)?  As most computing devices are connected to networks,
would it be necessary to develop energy benchmarks that consider
network connections?  How should the energy consumed by shared
resources (routers and servers) be counted?

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Action Items for energy efficiency

From the summit, I think there are two main actions items for the energy efficiency group.
  1. Organize a competition of low-power designs.
  2. Organize workshops discussing how to design systems that can migrate computation to more energy efficient locations or locations with renewable energy