Architectural innovation

What is architectural innovation?

Architectural innovation involves taking design elements and using them in a novel way. An example from consumer electronics was the smart watch where existing mobile phone technologies were combined with digital watch display technology to create a new class of product.

In the processor sphere, a well-known area of innovation was replacing a single core with a multi-core system. Such systems mitigated the slowing down of semiconductor scaling.

Innovation in processors is also possible with novel ideas for a core. Such innovation can be in the instruction set, the design of computational units, security features as well as memory subsystems. Examples of innovation breakthroughs in the past include RISC, VLIW and dataflow architectures.

Architectural innovation glossary term

How to get started with architectural innovation?

If a designer has novel ideas for a processor core both hardware and software aspects need to be covered. This means that it is efficient to start with a description of the processor in an architectural language such as Codasip’s CodAL. Then if both a software toolchain (compiler, assembler, linker, etc) and RTL are generated from this description the design can be efficiently developed. Codasip provides the Studio product to support the efficient development of a CodAL description and the generation of HDKs and SDKs.

To go further, see also:

Getting started with Codasip