Deep Dive: The Open Cloud *FPGA* Testbed- Martin Herbort, BU and Miriam Lesser, NEU

March 3, 2020, 2:00 – 3:10 PM
GSU 321

Abstract: We are creating a cloud infrastructure with a significant FPGA component.  The Open Cloud Testbed has some unique attributes, in particular that there are isolatable partitions to facilitate sandboxes for real systems work.  In the OCFT, the FPGA in various cloud architectures can be configured down to the bare metal, and issues related to, e.g., developing shells or BSPs, can be explored.  The idea is not to replace AWS (or IBM/Huawei/…) for compute cycles or basic application development, but rather to give researchers some benefit not otherwise available, or, at least, not nearly as cost-effectively.

In this Deep Dive we will discuss the various FPGA/Cloud configurations we would like to explore, including especially Bump-in-the-Wire and tightly couple node accelerator. We will then have an open discussion about potential use cases, including hardware operating systems, middleware acceleration, toolflows, provider applications, and others.


Martin Herbordt is Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Boston University where he directs the Computer Architecture and Automated Design Lab. His research spans Architecture and High Performance Computing. He and his group have been working for many years in accelerating HPC applications with FPGAs and GPUs, and in building systems integrating FPGAs. More recently their focus has been on middleware and system aspects of large-scale FPGA clusters and clouds, the latter especially in Bump-in-the-Wire configurations.

Miriam Leeser is Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Northeastern University.  She has been doing research in hardware accelerators, including FPGAs and GPUs, for decades, and has done ground breaking research in floating point implementations, unsupervised learning, medical imaging, privacy preserving data processing and wireless networking.  She received her BS degree in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University, and Diploma and Ph.D. Degrees in Computer Science from Cambridge University in England.  She has been a faculty member at Northeastern since 1996, where she is head of the Reconfigurable Computing Laboratory and a member of the Computer Engineering group.  She is a senior member of ACM, IEEE and SWE. She is the recipient of an NSF Young Investigator Award.   Throughout her career she has been funded by both government agencies and companies, including DARPA, NSF, Google, MathWorks and Microsoft. She received the prestigious Fulbright Scholar Award in 2018.

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