Wednesday, August 17, 2022 (10 AM PST)

  • TILOS Seminar Series: Machine Learning for Design Methodology and EDA Optimization. Speaker: Haoxing Ren, NVIDIA. (zoom link)

Abstract: In this talk, I will first illustrate how ML helps improve design quality as well as design productivity from design methodology perspective with examples in digital and analog designs. Then I will discuss the potential of applying ML to solve challenging EDA optimization problems, focusing on three promising ML techniques: reinforcement learning (RL), physics-based modeling and self-supervised learning (SSL). RL learns to optimize the problem by converting the EDA problem objectives into environment rewards. It can be applied to both directly solve the EDA problem or be part of a conventional EDA algorithm. Physics-based modeling enables more accurate and transferable learning for EDA problems. SSL learns the optimized EDA solution data manifold. Conditioned on the problem input, it can directly produce the solution. I will illustrate the applications of these techniques in standard cell layout, computational lithography, and gate sizing problems.  Finally, I will outline three main approaches to integrate ML and conventional EDA algorithms together and the importance of adopting GPU computing to EDA.

Bio: Haoxing Ren (Mark) leads the Design Automation research group at NVIDIA Research. His research interests are machine learning applications in design automation and GPU accelerated EDA. Before joining NVIDIA in 2016, he spent 15 years at IBM Microelectronics and IBM Research working on physical design and logic synthesis tools and methodologies for IBM microprocessor and ASIC designs. He received several IBM technical achievement awards including the IBM Corporate Award for his work on improving microprocessor design productivity. He published many papers in the field of design automation including several book chapters in logic synthesis and physical design. He also received the best paper awards at ISPD’2013, DAC’2019 and TCAD’2021. He earned his PhD in Computer Engineering from University of Texas at Austin in 2006.