[llvm-dev] RFC: Generic IR reductions

Renato Golin via llvm-dev llvm-dev at lists.llvm.org
Wed Feb 1 01:58:15 PST 2017

On 1 February 2017 at 09:38, Demikhovsky, Elena
<elena.demikhovsky at intel.com> wrote:
> I suppose, we can let Target to "decide".  Target may decide to use an intrinsic since it will be converted later to one instruction or leave a plain IR letting the optimizer to work smoothly.
> Actually, we do the same for gather/scatter - vectorizer does not build intrinsics if the Target does not support them.

Absolutely, this is a target-specific decision.

For gather / scatter we had some intrinsics, but we also used plain IR
for others, no? For strided access, we used mostly IR, despite the
original proposal to be mostly intrinsics.

I think the balance is: what is the cost across the compiler to
generate and keep the intrinsics syntactically correct and optimal?

I'm not claiming I know, as I don't know AVX or SVE too well, but we
need answers to those questions before we take any decision.

>> adds complexity to the optimizer
> Optimizer should not deal with intrinsics, with this kind of intrinsics at least.

That's why it adds complexity. To most optimisers, intrinsics are
function calls that could either be replaced by a code block, or a
specific instruction or a library call. This may make certain
transformations opaque.

We have had in the past, examples in the NEON generation that has
shown better code after inlining due to new IR patterns being found,
and if we had used intrinsics, they wouldn't.

> The target should be able to answer on question IsProfitable(ORDERED_REDUCTION_FADD, VF)  - ordered reductions, for example, are not supported on X86 and the answer will, probably, be "false".
> In this case we'll stay with plain IR.
> But SVE will answer "true" and an intrinsic will be created. So, in my opinion, we need reduction intrinsics.

I'm not sure what you mean. The cost analysis is per instruction,
which adds up to per block or function, be them intrinsics or legal IR

The implementation of functions that calculate profitability already
have to take into account non-intrinsics, so that shouldn't make any

> The IR is plain and the ISAs are complex, we miss optimizations at the end. IR should be reach in order to serve complex ISAs.

Creating more intrinsics actually make the IR *more* complex. What
kind of optimisations would we miss?

If you mean "patterns may not be matched, and reduction instructions
will not be generated, making the code worse", then this is just a
matter of making the patterns obvious and the back-ends robust enough
to cope with it, no?

I mean, we already do this for almost everything else. If the current
IR can express the required semantics, then we should use plain IR.

The alternative is to start forcing intrinsics for everything, which
would make IR really pointless.

> As far as intrinsics set, we, probably, need "ordered" and "plain" mode for FP reductions.

The ordered and plain modes can be chosen via an additional parameter,
the accumulator.

> X86 does not have the "ordered" today, but might be interesting in a loop-tail operation in FP fast mode.

Indeed, same for NEON and I guess most other SIMD engines.


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