Radio Free HPC Looks at Diverging Chip Architectures in the Wake of Spectre and Meltdown

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Paul Kocher is a Security Technology Advisor at Rambus.

In this podcast, the Radio Free HPC team looks at the tradeoff between chip performance and security. In the aftermath of the recently disclosed Spectre and Meltdown exploits, Cryptograpy guru Paul Kocher from Rambus is calling for a divergence in processor architectures:

The direction that we need to go as an industry though is …We need to stop trying to build one processor architecture that is great for playing video games and doing wire transfers. We need to build architectures where there are cores and software stacks designed for security that can be slower, that can be simpler, and we need separate ones that are optimized for performance.”

In this video, Paul Kocher presents: Spectre – Exploiting Speculative Execution. Kocher is the lead author of the paper on the Spectre processor vulnerability.

After that, we do our Catch of the Week:

    • Shahin points us to a story about the first-ever photography of a single atom. Unsurprisingly, it looks like a tiny dot.
    • Henry is concerned about the story about a Canadian system administrator that intentionally blew out all the switches on a railway system. How safe is our whole transportation system?
    • Dan likes the story about Russian nuclear scientists who were arrested for mining Bitcoin with their state-owned supercomputer.
    • Rich notes that ORNL has posted their plans for Frontier, their first Exascale supercomputer. It looks like it will be fully operational in 2023.

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