RISC-V technology

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Recently, chip designer Qualcomm said that it is partnering with Alphabet's Google to make wearable devices like smartwatches using chips based on RISC-V technology.

About RISC-V technology: 

  • It is an open-source technology which is pronounced as "risk five".
  • It is an open-source instruction set architecture (ISA) used for the development of custom processors targeting a variety of end applications.
  • It is considered the fifth generation of processors built on the concept of the reduced instruction set computer (RISC). 
  • It was begun as a project at UC Berkeley to create an open-source computer system based on RISC principles.
  • It was initially designed for academic use. The standard has evolved and is now managed by RISC-V International. 
  • How does RISC-V work?
    • As an open-standard architecture, RISC-V is defined by member companies of RISC-V International, the global nonprofit organization behind the ISA.
    • The intent is that through collaboration, the member companies can contribute new avenues of processor innovation while promoting new degrees of design freedom.
    • It features a small core set of instructions upon which all the design’s software runs.
    • The architecture allows designers to customize and build their processor in a way that’s tailored to their target end applications.
  • Benefits of RISC-V include:
    • Its open-standard nature, which allows collaboration and innovation across the industry.
    • The entire RISC-V architecture can be scrutinized closely in the public domain, eliminating back doors and hidden channels.
  • Applications: Wearables, Industrial, IoT, and Home Appliances, Smartphones, Automotive, High-Performance Computing (HPC), and Data Centers.

Q1) What is Open-source technology

Open-source technology refers to software, hardware, or other technologies that are developed and distributed with an open licensing model. This means that the source code, design, or specifications of the technology are made freely available to the public, allowing anyone to view, use, modify, and distribute the technology.

Source: Qualcomm, Google partner to make RISC-V chip for wearable devices