Designing Inexact Systems Efficiently using Elimination Heuristics
Shyamsundar Venkataraman1,a, Akash Kumar1,b, Jeremy Schlachter2,c and Christian Enz2,d
1Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore.
2Integrated Circuits Laboratory, EPFL, Neuchâtel 2, Switzerland.
There are a wide variety of applications that are
able to tolerate small errors in the values of the outputs, provided
they are within the application-specific thresholds. For such
applications, there have been many efforts to study the tradeoff
involved in the accuracy of the output and the energy/area
requirement. However, most of the efforts have been at the
level of individual components. In this article, we present a
design flow to study the inexactness at the level of system and
provide heuristics to quickly explore the design-space under given
inexactness and area/energy constraints. The approach is applied
to various digital signal processing filters and an ECG application
of QRS detection. In both cases, orders of magnitude speed-ups
are obtained in the design-flow process. Area savings of 21.61%
and power savings of 22.79% were observed for a low-pass filter
having a relative error of just 8E-5%.
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