The future of computing is at crossroads. The technology advances driving “Moore’s law” that have sustained the exponential growth of computing performance over the last several decades are slowing, and the roadmap for future advances is uncertain. The phenomenal expansion of computing power has made computers ubiquitous, spawning a $300 billion semiconductor industry, enabling unprecedented global economic growth, and transforming many aspects of society at large. Emerging technology needs will place further demands on computing, including the need to process a profusion of data from sensors, the internet, scientific experiments, social media, national security systems, and the financial world. Transmitting, storing, processing, and analyzing this data explosion with the requisite speed and performance may mandate a radical departure from the traditional computing paradigm, ranging from hardware to software to benchmarking, and may even involve rethinking the tasks that computing machines are designed to undertake. Recently, government, industry, and academia collectively recognized that addressing this critical technological problem requires a new, multidisciplinary research agenda for computing.
Thus, beyond Moore computing is addressed in this issue by showcasing current research on new materials and substrates for building faster switching devices for more power efficient computing, novel architectures inspired by the brain or models of physics as alternatives to the traditional von Neumann model of computation as well as novel and emerging applications of domain specific architectures. The special issue will touch upon important advances being made in this broad spectrum of research.