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SpiNNaker: The design automation problem

Andrew Brown, David Lester, Luis Plana, Steve Furber and Peter Wilson


This paper describes the design automation issues and techniques used to design a massively parallel processing platform "SpiNNaker" from a hardware and systems design perspective. The emphasis of this paper is addressing the key problem of resource mapping, where multiple threaded programs are to be targeted onto a hardware platform that consists of multiple ARM cores and other resources such as memory and networks. In addition, the design environment is considered to ensure that a designer can program applications onto this environment in a practical manner.