RESEARCH PAPER: The Graphcore Software Stack: Built To Scale

Software for new processor designs is critical to enabling application deployment and optimizing performance. UK-based startup Graphcore, a provider of silicon for application acceleration, places significant emphasis on software, dedicating roughly half its engineering staff to the challenge. Graphcore’s Intelligence Processing Unit (IPU) utilizes the expression of an algorithm as a directed graph, and the company’s Poplar software stack translates models and algorithms into those graphs for execution. The software simplifies adoption of the chip for AI and parallel computing, making it vital to the company’s success. This paper explores the benefits provided by the company’s software and discusses how these capabilities could speed development and deployment of applications that run on Graphcore IPUs.

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Table Of Contents

  • Introduction
  • A Brief Overview Of The Intelligence Processing Unit
  • The Graphcore Software Platform
  • Deployment: Industry Standard Tools And Platforms
  • Figure 1: The Graphcore Intelligent Processor
  • Figure 2: The Graphcore Software Platform
  • Figure 3: Graphcore’s Poplar Libraries
  • Figure 4: Graphcore Ecosystem Support

Companies Cited

  • Cirrascale
  • Dell Technologies
  • Graphcore
  • Microsoft