SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Nikita Ivanov, Sean Houghton

News Feed Item

Khronos Releases SPIR 1.2 Specification for Portable Encoding of OpenCL Device Programs

The Khronos™ Group today announced the ratification and public release of the SPIR™ 1.2 specification that provides a non-source encoding, and binary level portability, for OpenCL™ 1.2 device programs. SPIR (Standard Portable Intermediate Representation) is the industry's first open, cross-platform Intermediate Representation standard for portable heterogeneous parallel computing and is based on LLVM IR. SPIR enables developers to avoid exposing sensitive kernel source and enables a diversity of language front-ends to easily target OpenCL platforms and devices in addition to OpenCL C. The SPIR specification and registry can be found at http://www.khronos.org/registry/spir.

Before the development of SPIR, new tools and languages for accessing parallel acceleration on heterogeneous systems required specific and detailed knowledge to create compiler back-ends for each vendor's unique hardware architecture. The SPIR standard enables vendors to accept and accelerate SPIR binaries on their hardware, freeing higher-level languages to innovate across a diverse range of platforms including discrete accelerator boards, system on chips, graphics processors and FPGAs.

SPIR enables a rich ecosystem of compiler middleware for portable parallel programs by building on the strengths of LLVM and OpenCL. SPIR is a specialization of LLVM 3.2 IR, but also encodes OpenCL-specific semantics. The cl_khr_spir standard extension to OpenCL 1.2 and 2.0 defines how to load a SPIR instance into an OpenCL runtime. The development of SPIR has been validated on multiple vendor implementations of OpenCL, and has benefited from a thorough open consultation process between Khronos and the LLVM and Clang communities.

In addition to the SPIR specification, Khronos is making the following open source software components available on Github under the same license as LLVM and Clang:

  • a modified Clang 3.2 which generates SPIR from device programs in OpenCL C version 1.2;
  • a SPIR module verifier, written in the form of an LLVM pass;
  • a header file containing definitions for all enumerated values in the SPIR 1.2 specification.

Further details on these resources can be found at: https://github.com/KhronosGroup.

With the release of SPIR 1.2 and associated software tools, the Khronos Group welcomes developers of diverse computing and graphics stacks to leverage SPIR for cross vendor portability and to drive innovation on the following fronts:

  • Front-ends: new language front-ends and programming abstractions for heterogeneous parallel programming can target production quality OpenCL backends through SPIR;
  • Back-ends: new target platforms based on multicore, vector, VLIW or other technologies can reuse production quality language frontends and abstractions;
  • Tooling: advanced program analysis and optimization of programs in SPIR form.

For example, the developers of both OpenACC and C++ AMP have stated that they will target SPIR to access optimized back-ends across multiple vendors.

Industry Support

“AMD is very excited to see the Khronos Group finalize its SPIR 1.2 specification to build on the industry momentum driving heterogeneous computing, and we expect SPIR 1.2 to help enable a broad set of programming languages that take advantage of the immense computing capabilities of graphics hardware,” said Gregory Stoner, senior director, HSA Application Engineering, AMD, and Managing Director of the HSA Foundation. “SPIR 1.2 addresses several new features requested by our developers, including the ability to ship OpenCL kernels in a binary representation.”

“I expect SPIR to open up many new areas of research in heterogeneous parallel systems,” said Simon McIntosh-Smith, Head of the Microelectronics Research Group at the University of Bristol. “A portable intermediate representation such as this will enable the development of exciting new software tools and parallel languages, and will thus accelerate the adoption of next generation parallel architectures.”

“SPIR will be a key enabler for innovation in heterogeneous computing. Before SPIR, producing a new tool or language for accelerating on today's spectacularly powerful and efficient heterogeneous systems would require in-depth knowledge and access to each different hardware vendor's architecture,” said Andrew Richards, CEO of Codeplay. “Now, with SPIR as an open, cross-platform standard, we can innovate across a whole range of hardware architectures. This heralds in a new era of heterogeneous computing and I commend the excellent work by the group putting this cross-vendor standard together.”

“We are excited to see SPIR publicly released and believe it will greatly help OpenCL adoption by making application deployment more convenient and portable across hardware platforms,” said Jonathan Khazam, vice president and general manager of Intel's Visual & Parallel Computing Group. “SPIR and OpenCL are a great way to take advantage of GPU computing to deliver new experiences on a wide range of computing devices, from phones and tablets to PCs.”

About The Khronos Group

The Khronos Group is an industry consortium creating open standards to enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics, vision, sensor processing and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices. Khronos standards include OpenGL®, OpenGL® ES, WebGL™, OpenCL™, WebCL™, OpenVX™, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, StreamInput™ and COLLADA™. All Khronos members are enabled to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests. More information is available at www.khronos.org.

Khronos, DevU, StreamInput, WebGL, WebCL, COLLADA, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenVX, OpenSL ES, OpenMAX, glTF and SPIR are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc. ASTC is a trademark of ARM Holdings PLC, OpenCL is a trademark of Apple Inc. and OpenGL is a registered trademark and the OpenGL ES and OpenGL SC logos are trademarks of Silicon Graphics International used under license by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

More Stories By Business Wire

Copyright © 2009 Business Wire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Business Wire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Business Wire. Business Wire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
In her General Session at 15th Cloud Expo, Anne Plese, Senior Consultant, Cloud Product Marketing, at Verizon Enterprise, focused on finding the right mix of renting vs. buying Oracle capacity to scale to meet business demands, and offer validated Oracle database TCO models for Oracle development and testing environments. Anne Plese is a marketing and technology enthusiast/realist with over 19+ years in high tech. At Verizon Enterprise, she focuses on driving growth for the Verizon Cloud platfo...
The Internet of Things will put IT to its ultimate test by creating infinite new opportunities to digitize products and services, generate and analyze new data to improve customer satisfaction, and discover new ways to gain a competitive advantage across nearly every industry. In order to help corporate business units to capitalize on the rapidly evolving IoT opportunities, IT must stand up to a new set of challenges. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jeff Kaplan, Managing Director of THINKstrateg...
SYS-CON Events announced today Isomorphic Software, the global leader in high-end, web-based business applications, will exhibit at SYS-CON's DevOps Summit 2015 New York, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Isomorphic Software is the global leader in high-end, web-based business applications. We develop, market, and support the SmartClient & Smart GWT HTML5/Ajax platform, combining the productivity and performance of traditional desktop software ...
The Internet of Things is tied together with a thin strand that is known as time. Coincidentally, at the core of nearly all data analytics is a timestamp. When working with time series data there are a few core principles that everyone should consider, especially across datasets where time is the common boundary. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Scott, Director of Enterprise Strategy & Architecture at MapR Technologies, discussed single-value, geo-spatial, and log time series dat...
DevOps Summit 2015 New York, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that it is now accepting Keynote Proposals. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Gridstore™, the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built to optimize Microsoft workloads, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Gridstore™ is the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built for Microsoft workloads and designed to accelerate applications in virtualized environments. Gridstore’s hyper-converged infrastructure is the ...
There's Big Data, then there's really Big Data from the Internet of Things. IoT is evolving to include many data possibilities like new types of event, log and network data. The volumes are enormous, generating tens of billions of logs per day, which raise data challenges. Early IoT deployments are relying heavily on both the cloud and managed service providers to navigate these challenges. In her session at Big Data Expo®, Hannah Smalltree, Director at Treasure Data, discussed how IoT, Big D...
The 4th International DevOps Summit, co-located with16th International Cloud Expo – being held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY – announces that its Call for Papers is now open. Born out of proven success in agile development, cloud computing, and process automation, DevOps is a macro trend you cannot afford to miss. From showcase success stories from early adopters and web-scale businesses, DevOps is expanding to organizations of all sizes, including the world's large...
The Internet of Things promises to transform businesses (and lives), but navigating the business and technical path to success can be difficult to understand. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Sean Lorenz, Technical Product Manager for Xively at LogMeIn, demonstrated how to approach creating broadly successful connected customer solutions using real world business transformation studies including New England BioLabs and more.
WebRTC defines no default signaling protocol, causing fragmentation between WebRTC silos. SIP and XMPP provide possibilities, but come with considerable complexity and are not designed for use in a web environment. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Matthew Hodgson, technical co-founder of the Matrix.org, discussed how Matrix is a new non-profit Open Source Project that defines both a new HTTP-based standard for VoIP & IM signaling and provides reference implementations.
DevOps Summit 2015 New York, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that it is now accepting Keynote Proposals. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete...
Explosive growth in connected devices. Enormous amounts of data for collection and analysis. Critical use of data for split-second decision making and actionable information. All three are factors in making the Internet of Things a reality. Yet, any one factor would have an IT organization pondering its infrastructure strategy. How should your organization enhance its IT framework to enable an Internet of Things implementation? In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, James Kirkland, Chief Ar...
"SAP had made a big transition into the cloud as we believe it has significant value for our customers, drives innovation and is easy to consume. When you look at the SAP portfolio, SAP HANA is the underlying platform and it powers all of our platforms and all of our analytics," explained Thorsten Leiduck, VP ISVs & Digital Commerce at SAP, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 15th Cloud Expo, held Nov 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SAP is delivering break-through innovation combined with fantastic user experience powered by the market-leading in-memory technology, SAP HANA. In his General Session at 15th Cloud Expo, Thorsten Leiduck, VP ISVs & Digital Commerce, SAP, discussed how SAP and partners provide cloud and hybrid cloud solutions as well as real-time Big Data offerings that help companies of all sizes and industries run better. SAP launched an application challenge to award the most innovative SAP HANA and SAP HANA...
Connected devices and the Internet of Things are getting significant momentum in 2014. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Hunter, Chief Scientist & Technology Evangelist at Greenwave Systems, examined three key elements that together will drive mass adoption of the IoT before the end of 2015. The first element is the recent advent of robust open source protocols (like AllJoyn and WebRTC) that facilitate M2M communication. The second is broad availability of flexible, cost-effective ...