SIPEW stands for “SPEC International Performance Evaluation Workshop”, and the SIPEW workshop 2008 was held on June 27 and 28 in Darmstadt, Germany, right after an internal SPEC conference that lasted almost a week. We had received an invitation to the event, which we weren’t familiar with, so we decided to attend and have a look behind the SPEC curtain.
The main purpose of the SIPEW 2008 workshop was to offer a platform for software and hardware manufacturers to meet with each other and benchmark engineers. Almost 100 attendees reflected the importance of the event, given its highly professional nature and deeply technical content, which really gets down to the nitty gritty of benchmarking. At registration, all attendees received a book on the topics of the workshop: Performance Evaluation – Metrics, models and benchmarks.
While most of the content is truly scientific and out of range for people who don’t have a background in statistics, math, software architecture and the issues related to benchmarking, the keynotes discussed topics related to benchmarking, which are more relevant for benchmarking in practice. Two of the main topics were scheduling in server farms and the keynote on SPECpower_ssh2008, which is SPEC’s power efficiency benchmark that was released in late 2007.