Processor customization is one approach to optimizing a processor IP core to handle a certain workload. In some case it makes sense to design a dedicated core from scratch, but in many cases an existing core may partially meet your requirements and can be a good starting point for your optimized core.
In the past some processor IP vendors, notably ARC and TenSilica, offered extensible cores which allowed a limited amount of customization. However with Codasip Studio, the processor architecture and microarchitecture can be described with the CodAL language, offering far more degrees of freedom both in terms of ISA and microarchitecture.
This CodAL ability is particularly synergistic with the RISC-V ISA, but it can be applied to cores based on any other ISA too.
Customization and RISC-V
The RISC-V instruction set has three classes of instruction. There is a base instruction set for a given wordlength (32-, 64- or 128-bit), different groups of optional standard extensions, and non-standard custom extensions.
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