[llvm-dev] RFC: Generic IR reductions

Renato Golin via llvm-dev llvm-dev at lists.llvm.org
Wed Feb 1 04:39:31 PST 2017

On 1 February 2017 at 11:59, Demikhovsky, Elena
<elena.demikhovsky at intel.com> wrote:
>   > @llvm.reduce(ext <N x double> ( add <N x float> %a, %b))
> And if we don't have %b? We just want to sum all elements of %a? Something like @llvm.reduce(ext <N x double> ( add <N x float> %a, zeroinitializer))

Hum, that's a good point. My examples were actually wrong, as they
weren't related to simple reductions. Your zeroinit is the thing I was
looking for.

> Don't we have a problem with constant propagation in this approach?

I'm not sure. Can you expand this?

> I proposed a "generic" intrinsic approach on the BOF (Nov, 2016), like
>     %scalar = @llvm.reduce(OPCODE, %vector_input) - OPCODE may be a string, integer or metadata.

I wouldn't use metadata. Integer would be cumbersome and lead to
eventual ABI breakages, and "text" would be the same as:

  %scalar = @llvm.reduce.add(%vector)

which is the same thing Amara proposed.

I'm not saying it is wrong, I'm just worried that, by mandating the
encoding of the reduction into an intrinsic, we'll force the
middle-end to convert high-level code patterns to the intrinsic or the
target will ignore it completely.

There is a pattern already for reductions, and the back-ends already
match it. This should not change, unless there is a serious flaw in it
- for the targets that *already* support it. This is an orthogonal

SVE has more restrictions, for instance, one cannot know how many
shuffles to do because the vector size is unknown, so the current
representation is insufficient, in which case, we need the intrinsic.

But replace everything else with intrinsics just because one target
can't cope with it doesn't work.

On thing that does happen is that code optimisations expose patterns
that would otherwise not be apparent. This includes potential
reduction or fusion patterns and can lead to massively smaller code or
even eliding the whole block. If you convert a block to an intrinsic
too early you may lose the ability to merge it back again later, as
we're doing today.

These are all hypothetical wrt SVE, but they did happen in NEON in the
past and were the reason why we only have a handful of NEON
intrinsics. Everything else are encoded with sequences of


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