ICRC 2020

5th IEEE International Conference on Rebooting Computing
1-3 December 2020
Virtual Conference


The 2020 5th IEEE International Conference on Rebooting Computing (ICRC) was held 1-3 December as a virtual conference due to the COVID pandemic. The conference was sponsored by the IEEE Rebooting Computing Initiative and IEEE Computer Society, with Gold Sponsorship provided by Huawei. The general chair was Tom Conte of Georgia Tech, and the program co-chairs were Michael Schneider of NIST and Catherine Schuman of Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The program committee was responsible for the selection and review of the conference papers, which will be published soon in IEEE Xplore.

Now in its 5th year, the IEEE International Conference on Rebooting Computing is the premier venue for forward-looking computing, including algorithms and languages, system software, system and network architectures, new devices and circuits, and applications of new materials and physics. This is an interdisciplinary conference that has participation from a broad technical community, with emphasis on all aspects of the computing stack. Bridging quantum computing and new architectures, the broad scope of ICRC extends to many areas of interest, including novel device physics and materials for post-Moore, beyond CMOS, and non-von Neumann computing paradigms.

ICRC 2020 featured 4 keynote addresses and 2 invited talks, as well as a series of regular papers and posters. Brief bios and abstracts of the keynote and invited speakers and the complete program are available. This program also included a satellite virtual workshop, the Winter 2020 Meeting of the International Roadmap for Devices and Systems (IRDS™), held 29-30 November. The IRDS™ outbrief was open to ICRC registrants.

The first keynote was presented by Dr. Manish Parashar, who is with the US National Science Foundation and the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, focusing on the future of US advanced computing systems. He spoke about national planning for going beyond the near-term exascale computing projects, to include future quantum and artificial intelligence systems. These were featured in a recent report from the US National Science and Technology Council, “Pioneering the Future Advanced Computing Ecosystem: A Strategic Plan” (PDF, 626 KB).

The next keynote was delivered by Dr. Man-Hong Yung, who is the Chief Scientist for Quantum Algorithms for Huawei, as well as a professor in the Southern University of Science and Technology in Shenzhen, China. Dr. Yung spoke about prospects for near-term quantum computing. While Noisy Intermediate Scale Quantum systems (NISQ) will be unable to achieve the full capabilities ultimately expected for quantum computers, he anticipated that hybrid systems of NISQ and classical computers will be able to address certain optimization and chemistry problems that classical computers alone cannot achieve in any reasonable amount of time. A recent overview of the subject by Dr. Yung is available at Huawei.

The 3rd keynote was by Dr. Iuliana Radu, who is the Director of Quantum and Exploratory Computing at IMEC in Belgium. She provided an overview of materials and device aspects going beyond CMOS, including 2D materials, as well as semiconductor and superconductor quantum bits (qubits). A recent article by Dr. Radu on similar subjects is available at IMEC.

The final keynote was given by Dr. Gregory Cohen, who is a professor in Neuromorphic Systems at the University of Western Sydney, Australia. He spoke about how inspiration from bio-neural sensors (as in biological eyes) can lead to much more efficient visual processing of artificial visual sensors for robots. A recent similar talk from last year by Dr. Cohen is available on his website.

There were also two invited talks. The first was by Dr. Todd Hylton, who is the Executive Director of the Contextual Robotics Institute at the University of California at San Diego. He spoke about Thermodynamic Computing, which he argued represents an intermediate scale between classical computing and quantum computing. Dr. Hylton also gave an invited talk on a similar subject at the 2017 ICRC, a video of which is available via IEEE.tv.

The final invited talk was by Dr. Advait Madhavan of the University of Maryland and the National Institute of Standards and Technology, who spoke about “Temporal State Machines.” This is a novel computing approach, inspired by biological neural systems, in which the information is encoded in arrival time. A recent review article by Dr. Madhavan on this topic (PDF, 2 MB) is available.

Videos of the some of the talks may be available later via IEEE.tv, and the papers from the meeting will be available via IEEE Xplore.