SoftNum: Software-Defined Number Formats

Computing devices implement computer arithmetic as basic functionality, and they implement the same, standardized number formats in order to support software portability. However, with Moore’s Law ending, we question whether it remains the best approach to achieve high performance and low energy consumption by applying the same standardized number formats for all applications. We explore how to make number formats, generally considered to be hard-wired functionality, software-defined. Software-defined number formats have the advantage of high performance, low energy consumption, and ensure sufficient while not excessive precision.

SoftNum is Amir’s individual Marie Sklodowska Curie Fellowship, sponsored by the European Commission.