Abstract: Large-scale deep learning benefits from an emerging class of AI accelerators. Some of these accelerators’ designs are general enough for compute-intensive applications beyond AI and Cloud TPU is one such example. In this paper, we demonstrate a novel approach using TensorFlow on Cloud TPU to simulate the two-dimensional Ising Model. TensorFlow and Cloud TPU framework enable the simple and readable code to express the complicated distributed algorithm without compromising the performance. Our code implementation fits into a small Jupyter Notebook and fully utilizes Cloud TPU's efficient matrix operation and dedicated high speed inter-chip connection. The performance is highly competitive: it outperforms the best published benchmarks to our knowledge by 60% in single-core and 250% in multi-core with good linear scaling. When compared to Tesla V100 GPU, the single-core performance maintains a ~10% gain. We also demonstrate that using low precision arithmetic---bfloat16---does not compromise the correctness of the simulation results.
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