On January 29th, Netronome and the Open Compute Project hosted a workshop at GLOBALFOUNDRIES headquarters in Silicon Valley to share the concept of creating an Open Domain-Specific Architecture targeted for System on a Chip (SoC) designs. Over 70 people attended from over 35 companies including Achronix, AveraSemi, Facebook, Kandou, NXP, TitanIC and zGlue to express their support and interest in this concept, along with a healthy dose of apprehension and skepticism.
Outweighing that skepticism is the potential benefit of breakthrough speed and agility to deliver performance from domain specific hardware accelerators (e.g. networking, security, storage, machine learning and inference silicon) while reducing cost of development and manufacturing.
An Open Domain-Specific Architecture (ODSA) sub-project will be chartered within the Open Compute Project Foundation. This workgroup will define an open interface and architecture that enables the mixing and matching of available silicon die from different suppliers onto a single SoC for data center applications. The goal is to define a process to integrate best-of-breed chiplets onto a SoC.
“The open architecture for domain-specific accelerators being proposed by the ODSA Workgroup brings the benefits of disaggregation to the world of SoCs. The OCP Community led by hyperscale operators has been at the forefront driving disaggregation of server and networking systems. Joining forces with OCP, the ODSA Workgroup brings the next chapter of disaggregation for domain-specific accelerator SoCs as it looks toward enabling proof of concepts and deployable products leveraging OCP’s strong ecosystem of hardware and software developers,” said Sujal Das, chief marketing and strategy officer at Netronome.
"Coincident with the decline of Moore's law, the silicon industry is facing longer development times and significantly increased complexity. We are pleased to see the ODSA Workgroup become a part of the Open Compute Project. We hope workgroup members will help to drive development practices and adoption of best-of-breed chiplets and SoCs. Their collaboration has the potential to further democratize chip development, and ultimately reduce design overhead of domain-specific silicon in emerging use cases,” said Aaron Sullivan, Director Hardware Engineering at Facebook."
Today there are many companies affected by, and affecting SoCs and domain-specific accelerators, such as co-processors for networking, security, storage, machine learning and inferencing. OCP has become the community of choice for collaboration by these companies and the ODSA goals align well with an already strong community of cloud hardware and firmware developers.
“Open hardware standards drive innovation. Achronix believes that the standardization of chiplets will enable companies to develop FPGA-based solutions faster for cost-efficient hardware accelerator products at lower costs. This is why Achronix helped start the ODSA Workgroup, and why we are excited to see this effort gain momentum by becoming part of the OCP,” said Manoj Roge, vice president of strategic planning and business development at Achronix Semiconductor Corporation.
The 2019 OCP Global Summit will be held March 14-15 in San Jose, CA. Click here to register. #OCPSummit19 https://www.opencompute.org/summit/global-summit/registration
For additional information and how to get involved, please visit the project portal and join the mailing list.
Wiki page: https://www.opencompute.org/wiki/Server/ODSA
Mailing list: https://ocp-all.groups.io/g/OCP-ODSA
For more information on ODSA, please refer to some recent blogs written by Bapi Vinnakota https://www.netronome.com/blog/odsa-workshop-report/.