$MC^2RAM$: Markov Chain Monte Carlo Sampling in SRAM for Fast Bayesian Inference

28 Feb 2020  ·  Priyesh Shukla, Ahish Shylendra, Theja Tulabandhula, Amit Ranjan Trivedi ·

This work discusses the implementation of Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) sampling from an arbitrary Gaussian mixture model (GMM) within SRAM. We show a novel architecture of SRAM by embedding it with random number generators (RNGs), digital-to-analog converters (DACs), and analog-to-digital converters (ADCs) so that SRAM arrays can be used for high performance Metropolis-Hastings (MH) algorithm-based MCMC sampling. Most of the expensive computations are performed within the SRAM and can be parallelized for high speed sampling. Our iterative compute flow minimizes data movement during sampling. We characterize power-performance trade-off of our design by simulating on 45 nm CMOS technology. For a two-dimensional, two mixture GMM, the implementation consumes ~ 91 micro-Watts power per sampling iteration and produces 500 samples in 2000 clock cycles on an average at 1 GHz clock frequency. Our study highlights interesting insights on how low-level hardware non-idealities can affect high-level sampling characteristics, and recommends ways to optimally operate SRAM within area/power constraints for high performance sampling.

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