Huawei announces 7nm process AI processor `` Ascend 910 '', suggesting possibility of adopting RISC-V in the future



Chinese communication equipment maker Huawei announces the first AI (Artificial Intelligence) processor `` Ascend 910 '' and the AI development framework `` MindSpore '' as `` the world's most powerful AI processor '' Announced on March 23rd. Huawei suggests the possibility of adopting RISC-V , which is an open source instruction set architecture (ISA) in the future, and it is reported that there are embargoes due to worsening relations with the United States. The

Huawei launches Ascend 910, the world's most powerful AI processor, and MindSpore, an all-scenario AI computing framework-Huawei
https://www.huawei.com/en/press-events/news/2019/8/Huawei-Ascend-910-most-powerful-AI-processor


Huawei mulls open-source chip design if US ban continues-Chinadaily.com.cn
http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/a/201908/23/WS5d5fe368a310cf3e355679b1.html


Huawei Seeks Independence From the US With RISC-V and Ascend Chips
https://www.tomshardware.com/news/huawei-risc-v-ai-processors-ascend-us,40238.html


According to Huawei, the maximum power consumption of the Ascend 910 is 310W, which is lower than the 350W planned in advance. Huawei also stated that 256 tera FLOPS was recorded by half-precision floating point (FP16) processing, and 512 tera OPS was executed by multiply-add operation with 8-bit integer (INT8), that is, 512 trillion times per second. It is.


The Ascend 910 is designed with TSMC 's 7nm process and is expected to function as a neural processing unit for training AI models in the data center.

Huawei also announced “MindSpore,” an AI development framework. MindSpore is developed with the three goals of 'easy development', 'efficient execution' and 'adaptable to all scenarios'. Also, MindSpore only handles gradients and model information that have already been processed, and not the data itself, Huawei has appealed to ensure user privacy.

When developing a general neural network for natural language processing with MindSpore, the number of lines of core code is 20% less than the main framework, and developer efficiency is improved by at least 50%. Huawei is 'a combination of Ascend 910 and MindSpore is ,, other mainstream AI chip and TensorFlow argue that is twice as fast as a combination of'. “Huawei will help build a more robust and vibrant AI ecosystem. MindSpore will be open source in the first quarter of 2020. We want to promote AI adoption and help developers do their best. I think. ”


However, Huawei was embargoed by the United States in May 2019, and licensing of the ARM architecture was suspended . Since Huawei has already obtained a permanent license for ARMv8 architecture, Huawei's product release plan is not affected by the embargo at the time of writing, but it can develop CPUs using ARM's new technology in the future There is a possibility of disappearing. In this interview, Eric Shue, chairman of the company, said in an interview in Shenzhen: “Even if the new technology provided by ARM is not available, RISC-V (risk five) can be adopted. 'This is an open architecture that can be used, and this challenge cannot be overcome.'

The RISC-V mentioned by Mr. Shou Rinban is an open source ISA. Not only Huawei but also other well-known companies such as Microsoft, IBM, Qualcomm, Micron, and Samsung are participating in the development project, and it is expected to have the potential to significantly change the existing computing ecosystem.

RISC-V is expected to become a technological innovation since `` Moore's Law ''-GIGAZINE


For example, x86, which is the most popular PC, is an ISA developed by Intel, and you need to pay a license fee to use Intel. However, RISC-V is developed as open source, so there is no need to pay a license fee. In addition, RISC-V is designed to be customized to suit a wide range of applications, and has backward compatibility that allows software for processors that are commonly used at the time of article creation to run. For these reasons, it has been pointed out that RISC-V has already reached the point where it has already spread.

Open source CPU instruction set `` RISC-V '' has come one step before popularization-GIGAZINE


“We have n’t started the transition to RISC-V because Huawei still wants to adopt the ARM architecture,” commented Shu Hwaban. However, as long as the embargo continues, the adoption of RISC-V is inevitable for Huawei to reduce its reliance on US technology and to compete with US competitors. If Huawei adopts RISC-V, the spread of RISC-V will also advance, so the future trend of Huawei will attract attention.

The promotion movie of Ascend 910 released by Huawei can be seen from the following.

Huawei: Ascend 910, The World's Most Powerful AI Processor-YouTube


in Hardware,   Video, Posted by log1i_yk