Sub-Project 1: System modeling, exploration, integration, demonstration of cognitive/attentive cameras

This sub-project addresses the system-level challenges and unifies the efforts of the other sub-projects into a cohesive modelling, design and verification framework. Regarding the system modelling, a high-level simulation framework will be developed and shared among all PIs to evaluate the functionality, the performance and the energy efficiency of individual components, as well as their impact at the system level. Energy per operation will also be modelled using proprietary models, to preliminarily estimate the benefit of each innovative technique before performing time-consuming circuit and architectural design. The same environment will be used to share a common database of benchmarks for quantitative assessment, and to perform experiments in a controlled environment shared by all researchers in the team. Tentatively, the environment will be in OpenCV-Python [OCP] as a compromise between Python’s code readability (as needed in collaborative efforts) and availability of OpenCV libraries (which has also been used by the PIs to generate some preliminary results). Such environment will also be used to generate test vectors for chip testing.

 

This sub-project also covers the system design, integration and demonstration aspects in CogniVision, once the above preliminary exploration is performed, and circuit/architectural techniques are investigated and developed for silicon implementation in other sub-projects. System integration will be first performed as a System on Board (SoB), assembling the stand-alone chips that are generated in the various sub-projects for two silicon rounds. The final demonstration is instead performed in the form of a single System on Chip (SoC). Accordingly, chip design partitioning and floor plan will be preliminarily performed, and a mixed-signal simulation/verification environment will be developed to verify the design from behavioral down to gate-level and some selected circuit simulations, when designs become available over time for the blocks in the CogniVision SoC. Also, this sub-project focuses on the silicon infrastructure for chip configuration and testing, based on the CogniVision chip architecture in Fig. D21. Once verified and taped out, the CogniVision chip will be fabricated by a commercial silicon foundry (e.g., GlobalFoundries) and tested in a real-world environment to assure that the ultimate quantitative targets in Table IV are achieved.The targeted use cases in this table are well within the capabilities of CogniVision, both in terms of memory (2MBs) and throughput (<20,000MOPS).The on-chip microprocessor(tentatively PULPino by ETHZ, also team collaborator [PLP]) in Fig. D21 does not affect the performance, as it is only configurethe accelerators and weights into the on-chip memory.