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?

1 comment:

  1. Good list. There are many, many others of course, but this extremely diverse list is already way too long for any single forum (or even short series of forums) to manage. A (very) small and much more focused subset of these could be chosen for 'RC 2' if this topical area (energy efficient computing) is still to be included. Focusing on topics not 'overly-covered' by the countless other forums being run these days, as well as choosing the right ones which can directly lead to some well-defined follow-up goals and actions are what I'd suggest using as down-selection criteria. Just my 'two cents' - Thanks, Yung-Hsiang!