Electronic Design

Multicore Association Completes API Spec

The Multicore Association has completed version 1.0 of its multicore communications application programming interface (MCAPI) and will soon make it publicly available. The association, an industry consortium focused on developing standards that speed time to market for systems using multicore processors, has been working on MCAPI for two years.

MCAPI captures the basic elements of inter-core communications that are required for embedded “closely distributed” systems. It scales to support hundreds of processor cores. Potential applications for such an API are extremely varied, but its principal use will be in embedded multicore systems with tight memory constraints and task execution times and which require reliable on-chip interconnect and high system throughput. Besides the details of the API, the specification includes example usage models for multimedia, networking, and automotive applications.

“MCAPI provides three communication modes: connectionless messages, connected channels for packets, and connected channels for scalars,” said Sven Brehmer, chairman of the Multicore Association’s MCAPI working group and president and CEO of PolyCore Software, which plans to introduce the first commercially available implementation of MCAPI soon. “It also provides functions for endpoint and non-blocking operations management. MCAPI was designed to provide basic and simple multicore communication functionality. This allows for flexible and high-performance implementations and more complex functionality to be layered on top of MCAPI.”

The Multicore Association

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