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IEEE: Computing 'Earthquake' Needed as Scaling Stalls

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The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers hopes to launch the Reboot Computing initiative late this year.


The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers' (IEEE) Reboot Computing initiative is planning to meet at the end of the year in Washington, D.C., to launch what the president of IEEE calls "an earthquake in the computing industry."

The Reboot Computing initiative is built around the premise that the emergence of the Internet of Things and the stalling ability to scale computing power at the rates described in Moore's Law necessitate a fundamental rethink of computing. The initiative is not dedicated to any one approach to changing computing, but rather to "Three Pillars" that the organization believes need to inform any such effort: energy efficiency, new user interfaces, and dynamic security baked in at every level. There are many new approaches to computing being explored today, including neuromorphic and approximate computing, adiabatic computing, and variations on parallelism.

Georgia Institute of Technology professor Thomas Conte, who co-chairs the Reboot Computing initiative, says he is particularly interested in Hewlett-Packard's "The Machine" project, which seeks to meld several new technologies into a completely new form of computer architecture. He also is interested in the efforts of the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's Microsystems Technology Office, which currently is focusing on software and new ways of representing data.

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