Programmatic Reform and Academic Innovation for the Next Generation Engineering and IT Education and Research in Beyond Von Neumann and Post Binary Era
Extension of Moore’s curve down to sub-nanoscale dimensions would lead to the anticipated delivery of over 100 Billion transistors with hundreds of optimized cores on a single chip. However, CMOS technologies are moving towards the fundamental limits of performance, energy efficiency, and physical and material reliability. In Von Neumann computing architecture, the physical and functional separation of the central processing and memory units limits execution speed and imposes massive energy overheads. CMOS technology is, therefore, confined in the medium-performance and medium-power range due to the conflicting impacts of supply and frequency scaling on performance and energy efficiency. There has been a very high demand to study the two extreme ends of the design spectrum, namely, the ultra-low-power (ULP) with acceptable performance at one end and extremely high-performance with manageable power at the other. A third direction is emerging that would require very high-performance applications with very low power consumption. In the age of the Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) the most critical aspects of all micro and nanoelectronic systems in the ULP domain are portability, reliability, longer lifetime, energy efficiency and rapid charging rate. Meeting these needs require research and development in two different fronts – (1) finding improved technologies that to ensure faster information processing speed and higher memory capacity at lower power consumption, and (2) identifying technologies and techniques to generate, store and manage energy at lower cost using eco-friendly but economically viable process.
The above-mentioned trends and future directions of emerging technologies require an overhaul of academic programs and research directions. Future degree programs and research projects would require multi- and trans-disciplinary focus because future engineers and IT professionals must have logical reasoning, human and communication skills, tactics, ability to look at an engineering problem from societal viewpoint, and leadership skills along with multidisciplinary technical competence. Because engineers and IT professionals will address the complex socio-economic challenges of a new century. Therefore, there is an urgent need to bring transformative and radical programmatic changes in the way we deliver academic degree programs and conduct research. This talk will explore different emerging approaches on how we educate future engineers and IT professionals.