What is reconfigurable computing?

Reconfigurable Computing, also called adaptive computing, refers to a computer architecture that facilitates faster and more complex computing by using reprogrammable integrated circuits to process data that solves problems and directs specified functions. 

In effect, it offers the higher speed and efficiency of computer hardware to perform serial and parallel tasks combined with software’s flexible capacity to allow changes to a circuit’s purpose in the field to adjust for changing circumstances.

Technologies commonly used to implement reconfigurable computing include Field-Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs), Digital Signal Processors (DSPs), and Graphics Processing Units (GPUs). The wide range of uses for these technologies includes commercial and military aircraft, automotive computers and controls, cameras, communications tools, cryptography devices, electronic sensors, GPS, image and video processing, Internet of Things (IoT) devices, medical imaging, missile systems, radar arrays, satellites, scientific instruments, security systems, smart phones, spacecraft, supercomputers, unmanned vehicles, voice recognition systems, wireless devices, etc., etc.

  • In designing these and other products, reconfigurable computing can provide three core advantages: (1) More functionality from simpler and smaller hardware designs, (2) Cost savings on low volume products and those whose useful life is extended by updating its purpose, and (3) Shorter/faster development time-to-market. While the effectiveness and uses of specific components continues to change, the need for reconfigurable computing capabilities will remain. Likewise, the need for designers and partners who excel at developing world class reconfigurable, high performance transceiver-on-a-chip platforms will also continue to grow for the foreseeable future.

 


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