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0018-9162/02/$17.00 2002 IEEE38 Computer Performance

Summary: 0018-9162/02/$17.00 2002 IEEE38 Computer
Performance modeling and analysis are now inte-
gral to the design flow of modern computing systems,
especially for high-performance microprocessors. As
Figure 1 shows, designers begin by developing per-
formance models of the target architecture, followed
by actual logic design--also called Register Transfer
Language, or RTL. Circuit designers convert the logic
specification into circuits, and layout engineers even-
tually position the circuits on the processor floor plan.
For very complex designs, such a design process
can take as long as seven years. Of course, the
process involves close interactions between the
steps. The performance model, in particular, is
refined as logic, and circuit designers feed back bet-
ter timing estimates for different hardware compo-
nents of the target architecture. Thus, the per-


Source: Adve, Sarita - Department of Computer Science, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Austin, Todd M. - Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, University of Michigan
Mukherjee, Shubu - Intel Corporation


Collections: Computer Technologies and Information Sciences; Engineering