What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?

By: dmcq (dmcq.delete@this.fano.co.uk), March 21, 2021 3:50 pm
Room: Moderated Discussions
Moritz (better.delete@this.not.tell) on March 20, 2021 5:21 am wrote:
> What if you could completely rethink the general processor concept?
> There are concepts that were without alternative in the days of little memory and few transistors:
> Sequential instructions by storage address and jumps based on that address
> Implicit dependency based on above principle
> Explicit naming of storage place rather than data item
> Explicit caching into registers
> Implicit addressing of registers
> Mixing of memory, float, integer instructions in one instruction stream
> that must be analyzed to remove the assumed sequentiallity.
> The ISA used to represent the physical architecture, today that
> is no longer the case in high performance microprocessors.
> The data modifies the program flow at run-time, instead of explicitly generating the data stream
> that reaches the execution units. The CPU steps through the program issuing the data to EUs instead
> of the program explicitly generating multiple data streams with synchronization markers.
> ... and many other implications that are so "natural" to us that we can not see/name them. As usual
> we can not even question the ways, because we are so used to them. There are infinite bad ways of doing
> it, but some of those forced/obvious (legacy) design decisions of the past might no longer be that
> necessary/without alternative. Some ways that seem cumbersome and wasteful might on second thought
> turn out to be hard on the human, but open new ways to the compiler, RTE, OS, CPU removing as much
> complexity as they add, but increasing throughput or energy efficiency beyond the current limit.

For straightforward large tasks I think we can depend on accelerators of various types to do the job. What we should be looking at is what would really help general purpose work. What is causing difficulties nowadays?

Computers from the past have got a lot to teach us, the Burroughs B5000 from nearly 60 years ago had a lot of innovative features more advanced than x86 has nowadays. Its operating system MCP was always renown for its reliability. It has been developed and survives to this day albeit in emulation from Unisys. The system avoided assembly language so could be upgraded more easily.

Of course any new architecture must be able to run practically anything that is around now with negligeable performance loss at worst. I'd be happy if a few faciities in Linux or Windows that many people think are important died the death, but there's no way something like that can be sold easily.

The one really important thing I would definitely bring in is capabilities. Burroughs had the equivalent with tags and called them descriptors but there hav been a number of implementations since. One recent project I like is from the CHERI project in Cambridge England and ARM is making a chip based on its N1 server design for it. This promises to simplify he system and make it more reliable and canp rovide direct user level calls to different protection domains obviating the need for passing data via the kernel.

Making calls to accelerators faster and more reliable has been a continuous project for anumber of years. The main work has been to get memory consistency. It was argued against as expensive and unnecessary because people could do just what was needed by hand - but I believe it is recognized now that it is better to pay the cost and get the hardware to do the job. The work of controlling the tasks is getting better but could still be improved.

Security could be improved so what is currently done by trusted compute modules is well protected and yet easily accessed. Even the operating sysem should be unable to read such code and data, but it would be nice if users could set up their own rather than it having to be completely outside the operating system.
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TopicPosted ByDate
What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?Moritz2021/03/20 05:21 AM
  What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?Stanislav Shwartsman2021/03/20 06:22 AM
    I like the analysis of current arch presentedMoritz2021/03/20 10:13 AM
    Did you read this old article?Michael S2021/03/21 02:12 AM
  Deliver programs in IRHugo Décharnes2021/03/20 07:34 AM
    Java bytecode and Wasm exist, why invent something else? (NT)Foo_2021/03/20 08:01 AM
      Java bytecode and Wasm exist, why invent something else?Hugo Décharnes2021/03/20 08:55 AM
        Java bytecode and Wasm exist, why invent something else?Foo_2021/03/20 10:50 AM
          Java bytecode and Wasm exist, why invent something else?Hugo Décharnes2021/03/20 12:40 PM
            Java bytecode and Wasm exist, why invent something else?Foo_2021/03/20 04:54 PM
              It's called source code, no?anonymou52021/03/21 12:43 AM
                It's called source code, no?Foo_2021/03/21 05:07 AM
                Thoughts on software distribution formatsPaul A. Clayton2021/03/22 01:45 PM
    Deliver programs in IRJames2021/03/20 11:24 AM
      Deliver programs in IRHugo Décharnes2021/03/20 12:28 PM
        Deliver programs in IRHugo Décharnes2021/03/20 12:36 PM
    Deliver programs in IRLinus Torvalds2021/03/20 01:20 PM
      Deliver programs in IRHugo Décharnes2021/03/20 01:51 PM
      I'd like to be able to NOT specify order for some things ...Mark Roulo2021/03/20 05:49 PM
        I'd like to be able to NOT specify order for some things ...Jukka Larja2021/03/21 12:26 AM
          NOT (unintentionally) specify orderMoritz2021/03/21 06:00 AM
            NOT (unintentionally) specify orderJukka Larja2021/03/22 07:11 AM
              NOT (unintentionally) specify orderMoritz2021/03/22 12:40 PM
                NOT (unintentionally) specify orderJukka Larja2021/03/23 06:26 AM
          I'd like to be able to NOT specify order for some things ...Mark Roulo2021/03/21 09:47 AM
            I'd like to be able to NOT specify order for some things ...Victor Alander2021/03/21 05:14 PM
      Next architecture will start with MLwumpus2021/03/21 12:24 PM
        Next architecture will start with MLLinus Torvalds2021/03/21 02:38 PM
          Maybe SQL was the better example for general purpose machineswumpus2021/03/22 08:33 AM
            Maybe SQL was the better example for general purpose machinesanon2021/03/22 09:10 AM
        Next architecture will start with MLML will move to PIM2021/03/22 03:51 AM
    Deliver programs in IRanon2021/03/21 03:22 AM
      Deliver programs in IRanon22021/03/21 04:52 AM
        Deliver programs in IRrwessel2021/03/21 05:05 AM
          Deliver programs in IRanon22021/03/21 07:08 PM
            Deliver programs in IRrwessel2021/03/21 10:47 PM
              Deliver programs in IRdmcq2021/03/22 04:33 AM
                Deliver programs in IRrwessel2021/03/22 06:27 AM
  What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?Veedrac2021/03/20 11:27 AM
    Cray MTAanon2021/03/20 06:04 PM
      Cray MTAChester2021/03/20 07:54 PM
        Cray MTAVeedrac2021/03/21 01:33 AM
          Cray MTAnoone2021/03/21 09:15 AM
            Cray MTAVeedrac2021/03/21 10:54 AM
    monolithic 3Dwumpus2021/03/21 12:50 PM
  What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?Anon2021/03/21 12:06 AM
  What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?rwessel2021/03/21 05:02 AM
  What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?juanrga2021/03/21 05:46 AM
  Summery so farMoritz2021/03/21 09:45 AM
    Summery so farrwessel2021/03/21 11:23 AM
      not staticMoritz2021/03/26 10:12 AM
        Dynamic meta instruction encoding for instruction window compressionMoritz2021/03/28 03:28 AM
          redistributing the work between static compiler, dynamic compiler, CPUMoritz2021/04/05 03:21 AM
            redistributing the work between static compiler, dynamic compiler, CPUdmcq2021/04/05 09:27 AM
    Summery so farAnon2021/03/21 08:53 PM
  What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?blaine2021/03/21 10:10 AM
    What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?rwessel2021/03/21 11:26 AM
      What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?rwessel2021/03/21 11:34 AM
        What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?blaine2021/03/21 12:55 PM
          What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?rwessel2021/03/21 01:31 PM
      What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?gallier22021/03/22 12:49 AM
  What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?dmcq2021/03/21 03:50 PM
  Microthread/low IPCEtienne Lorrain2021/03/22 03:22 AM
    Microthread/low IPCdmcq2021/03/22 04:24 AM
      Microthread/low IPCEtienne Lorrain2021/03/22 06:10 AM
        Microthread/low IPCdmcq2021/03/22 08:24 AM
    Microthread/low IPCdmcq2021/03/22 04:53 AM
      Microthread/low IPCEtienne Lorrain2021/03/22 05:46 AM
      Microthread/low IPCAnon2021/03/22 05:47 AM
    Microthread/low IPCHeikki Kultala2021/03/22 05:47 PM
      Microthread/low IPCEtienne Lorrain2021/03/23 03:36 AM
        Microthread/low IPCNyan2021/03/24 03:00 AM
          Microthread/low IPCEtienne Lorrain2021/03/24 04:23 AM
      Microthread/low IPCAnon2021/03/23 08:16 AM
        Microthread/low IPCgai2021/03/23 09:37 AM
          Microthread/low IPCAnon2021/03/23 10:17 AM
            Microthread/low IPCdmcq2021/03/23 12:42 PM
  Have you looked at "The Mill CPU" project? (nt)Anon C2021/03/22 06:21 AM
    Have you looked at "The Mill CPU" project? (nt)Moritz2021/03/22 12:13 PM
      Have you looked at "The Mill CPU" project? (nt)Andrew Clough2021/03/22 04:27 PM
        The Mill = vaporwareRichardC2021/03/23 12:47 PM
          The Mill = vaporwareMichael S2021/03/23 01:58 PM
          The Mill = vaporwareCarson2021/03/23 06:17 PM
          The Mill = doomed but interestingAndrew Clough2021/03/24 08:06 AM
            Solution in search of a problemwumpus2021/03/24 08:52 AM
              Solution in search of a problemdmcq2021/03/24 10:22 AM
          never-ware != vaporware (at least in connotation)Paul A. Clayton2021/03/24 10:37 AM
  What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?anonini2021/03/22 08:28 AM
    microcode that can combine instructionMoritz2021/03/22 12:26 PM
  What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?anony2021/03/22 10:16 AM
    Totally clueless.Heikki Kultala2021/03/22 05:53 PM
  Hierarchical instruction setHeikki Kultala2021/03/22 06:52 PM
    Hierarchical instruction setVeedrac2021/03/23 03:49 AM
      Hierarchical instruction setHeikki Kultala2021/03/23 06:46 AM
        Hierarchical instruction setEtienne Lorrain2021/03/23 07:16 AM
          microthreads on OS call/exceptionHeikki Kultala2021/03/23 07:34 AM
        Hierarchical instruction setVeedrac2021/03/23 09:31 AM
          Hierarchical instruction setEtienne Lorrain2021/03/24 01:13 AM
            Hierarchical instruction setVeedrac2021/03/24 07:11 AM
    Hierarchical instruction setAnon2021/03/23 08:39 AM
  What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?Paul A. Clayton2021/03/26 08:21 AM
    What are your ideas for a radically different CPU ISA + physical Arch?wumpus2021/03/26 09:45 AM
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