Topic for Discussion Sessions

Reflections and Perspectives on Avenues to Performance

One can naturally consider the following two questions:

To organize our thoughts we can schematically partition the history of solving problems by computation into three broad paradigms:

A promising direction, which begins to be pursued in several business areas, consists in tailoring general models to focused application areas.  Effective ways are searched to incorporate expert knowledge (for example, Bayesian kernels). In a way, the goal is a synthesis between Paradigms 1 and 3 described above.

While pondering on the target questions, within the outlined framework, it may be useful to identify the specific role of each layer of the computing stack, such as VLSI and other technologies, circuit design, machine architecture, compilers, performance tools, system software, application software, programming models, algorithms, theory of computation, etc. From which layers of the stack can we expect further performance improvements in the coming decade? And how will these layers evolve, to best serve the new computational paradigms?  Do we expect basic matrix operations to be the dominant primitives, as in the last twenty years?