Gen-Z Consortium Announces Next-Generation Storage Class Memory
For those of you who do not know, Gen-Z Consortium is made up of AMD, ARM, Dell EMC, IBM, HPE, Micron, Samsung, Seagate, SK Hynix, Western Digital among other companies. This is a group of technology companies that is coming together to introduce the next-generation storage class memory. As of right now, Intel is not part of the Gen-Z Consortium.
Technology has been changing rapidly in these recent years and still architects design computer hardware based on the thinking that storage is slow and persistent, while the memory is fast and volatile. Intel and Micron’s 3D XPoint technology is a perfect example of how that is no longer true and how technology is evolving. This means that these assumptions are no longer correct.
“The increased computing demands of artificial intelligence, machine learning, advanced analytics and other Cognitive Era workloads requires greater hardware performance and innovation,” said Brad McCredie, Fellow and Vice President of POWER Development at IBM.
“This increased demand, combined with the reduction in benefit from Moore’s Law, calls for a new set of open standards. The combination of system-level acceleration via CAPI technology and now datacenter rack-level acceleration with Gen-Z can enable the industry to deliver much-desired breakthroughs in data center technology,” he noted.
Since the introduction and the growth of the internet of things, it seems that hardware is the limiting factor when ti comes to how accurately and quickly data can be analyzed. So hardware needs to keep up with the pace if we are going to advance any further.
“As the industry moves toward the 3rd platform new open innovations are required to enable infrastructure support of massive data, billions of IoT devices, and cloud native applications,” said John Roese, CTO of the Infrastructure Solutions Group at Dell EMC.
“Taking advantage of new storage class memories and enabling composability in a memory-centric way will be critical as the control plane shifts toward in-memory computing. Gen-Z is an open industry standard that enables these innovations. Dell EMC is excited to be part of the Consortium that is developing this groundbreaking open industry standard,” he added.
What the Gen-Z Consortium believes is that there is a need for an open architecture for a next-generation interconnect technology as memory tiers are becoming increasingly important.
The Gen-Z consortium designed the fabric protocol to offer three main benefits.
The Gen-Z protocol has high-performance with support for hundreds of GB/s bandwidth and lowsub-100ns latency. It also supports simple read/writes memory semantic operations.
2. Advanced Workloads And Technologies
The new fabric protocol allows real-time analytics, enables data centric and hybrid computing, supports scalable memory pools for in-memory applications, and it can abstract the media interface from the SoC to unlock new media innovation.
The new protocol promises secure end-to-end connectivity from one node to another, even at rack scale. The protocol has high software compatibility as it won’t require OS changes, and users can implement the technology economically.
The availability of the protocol has not been announced yet but the Gen-Z consortium has said that it will be made available for free. What do you think about the Gen-Z Consortium and what it is bringing to the table?