IEEE Adopts Multicore Association’s Software/Hardware Interface for Multicore/Manycore (SHIM) Processors as New Standard

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SHIM Transitions to IEEE 2804 to Continue Its Evolution

The Multicore Association™ (MCA), a global non-profit organization that develops standards to optimize products with multicore processor implementations, announced today that its Software/Hardware Interface for Multicore/Manycore (SHIM) processors and tools, has been ratified as a new standard with the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). This means that existing IEEE SA members can join the SHIM standard working group without incurring any additional membership fees.

From a historical perspective, MCA released the first version of SHIM in 2015. This specification was defined to help existing software tools to quickly adapt to new multicore hardware and accelerate the development of new innovative tools. In 2018, MCA released SHIM 2.0 which included enhanced capabilities for complex processor architectures and improved performance estimation accuracy.

SHIM’s primary goal is to define a hardware architecture description standard useful for software design, especially for multi-core design assist tools such as software mapping and parallelization tools. Primary architectural features that SHIM describes include processor cores, accelerators, memory/caches, and inter-core communication channels – providing details such as topology, number of elements, and performance characteristics of the processor, memory, and the inter-connect.

“Now as IEEE standard, 2804, members of MCA and IEEE are encouraged to band together and start work on the next version. The SHIM standard is beneficial for many types of tools, including performance estimation for parallelization tools, hardware modeling, and system configuration,” said Masaki Gondo, CTO at eSOL and chair of the SHIM working group of the Multicore Association and chair of IEEE SHIM Working Group. “With the broader and acknowledged network of IEEE SA, we believe this will further accerelate the development and adaption of the SHIM standard.”

The SHIM 2.0 specification is publicly available from the organization's website. For more information, visit To join the IEEE SHIM working group, please contact the responsible IEEE Program Manager shown at

About The Multicore Association
The Multicore Association provides a neutral forum for vendors interested in, working with, and/or proliferating multicore-related products, including processors, infrastructure, devices, software, and applications. The consortium has made freely available its SHIM, Multicore Communications API (MCAPI) Multicore Resource Management API (MRAPI), and Multicore Task Management (MTAPI) specifications, as well as its Multicore Programming Practices (MPP) guide. In addition to the SHIM working group, the organization has active working groups focused on Multicore Communications (Version 3.x). Further information is available at

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Markus Levy
The Multicore Association
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