Circuit IR Compilers and Tools

ESI Software APIs

More on this to be written.

Status: unimplemented

Thanks to ESI’s strong static typing, typed, design-dependent software APIs can be automatically generated. Said APIs would be mostly independent of the transport mechanism (PCIe, network, etc.) used to communicate with the silicon. The same API could even drive a simulation of the ESI system.

Said APIs would need to ensure that the software is talking to the correct hardware. There are several possible approaches:

  • Generate a hash which is contained in the API and the hardware then compare at runtime. This has the downside of software not being able to communicate with logically compatible hardware. (E.g. mismatched interfaces which aren’t used.)
  • Communicate via some self-describing message format (e.g. protobuf or bond). This has the downside of encoding/decoding overhead.
  • Auto-generate self-describing hardware for dynamic discovery of functionality. This would allow software to be built without a static API (e.g. a generic poke/prod script). The downside is larger hardware area, though maybe not by much.