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Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation

 
 

Graphics & Workstation Performance Group Charter

Revised July 30, 2016

The Graphics & Workstation Performance Group, commonly referred to as the GWPG, is the representative body of the GWPG member organizations. The GWPG is an approved committee of the Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation (SPEC), and as such, operates under the bylaws and guidelines of SPEC.

1.0 Objectives

To permit standardized graphics and workstation performance measurement and evaluation by creating unambiguous vendor-neutral measures for product evaluation and comparison.

To develop specifications, programs and benchmarks for generating accurate performance measures in an open, accessible and well-publicized manner.

To provide tools, if applicable, which are available as examples for vendors and customers to use for their own performance measurement and evaluation needs.

To provide software releases to the public in a timely fashion.

To validate the specification, programs, and benchmarks by the development of a publicly available implementation.

To contribute to the coherence of the field of graphics and workstation performance measurement and evaluation so that customers will be better able to compare and evaluate vendor's products and environments.

To refrain from performing actual performance measures or evaluations.

1.1. SPEC General Policies and Principles

The intent of this section is to provide an overview of the general policies and principles of the SPEC organization, as context for the charter of the Graphics and Workstation Performance Group. The controlling documents for governance of SPEC are the Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws, filed with the State of California, and available from the SPEC Administrator.

In the event of disagreement between this document and SPEC's Bylaws, or disagreement between this document and decisions by the SPEC Board of Directors, said Bylaws or decisions shall take precedence over this document.

2.0 Activities

The GWPG, through Approved Projects, is developing a suite of standardized specifications that provide a standardized method of measuring graphics- and workstation-related performance for different hardware platforms. The Approved Projects are the responsibility of standing Subcommittees of the GWPG.

The current Approved Project Groups are the Graphics Performance Characterization (GPC), the Application Performance Characterization (APC), and the Workstation Performance Characterization (WPC) Groups.

2.1 The Graphics Performance Characterization Group (SPECgpc) is establishing graphics performance benchmarks for systems running under the OpenGL application programming interface (API) or other graphics APIs.

2.2 The Application Performance Characterization Group (SPECapc) is establishing a broad-ranging set of standardized benchmarks for graphics- and workstation-related applications.

2.3 The Workstation Performance Characterization Group (SPECwpc) is establishing benchmarks that measure key aspects of workstation performance based on diverse professional applications.

2.4 Other Approved Project Subcommittee -- Upon approval of a new project that meets the criteria outlined in the Objectives listed above, a new corresponding standing Subcommittee may be added by a majority vote of the GWPG.

3.0 Responsibilities

3.1 GWPG

The GWPG is the administrative body for the operations of the GWPG organization and its standing Subcommittees. The GWPG reviews and monitors all activities for compliance with these procedures and for compliance with the bylaws of SPEC.

The GWPG provides administrative management for the activities of its Subcommittees and is responsible for reviewing and approving all new project applications.

3.2 GWPG Approved Projects

The GWPG Approved Projects are assigned to standing Subcommittees which are the operational bodies responsible for the development, production and management of specifications, programs, and benchmarks for performance measurement. Projects are approved by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the members of the GWPG. All final releases of rules and specifications applicable across multiple projects, programs and benchmarks shall be approved by the GWPG prior to release.

The Subcommittees will be responsible for the work to develop, evaluate and approve the specifications, programs and benchmarks. All Subcommittee working documents and records of the Subcommittee's actions, methods and procedures shall be retained for review and inspection. The specifications, programs and benchmarks described herein will be made available to all interested parties at the earliest possible release dates.

4.0 Structure

The cost of the GWPG and its Subcommittees will be paid via membership fees or dues. Any organization can become a sustaining member by payment of the membership fee or annual dues.

The GWPG will put in place and maintain an appeals process through which any interested or affected party may register and have heard a complaint concerning GWPG or Subcommittee action or inaction on any Approved Project.

Meeting locations will rotate as appropriate. Potential locations will be provided to the SPEC office and final decisions will be approved by the GWPG.

Face-to-face meetings of the GWPG and Subcommittees will be held at least four (4) times a year. Additional meetings will be called as appropriate with sufficient advance notice. Any such meetings may be convened in person or by electronic means. Agendas will be prepared and circulated to all members in advance of meetings.

Meeting minutes will be kept by the elected secretary and issues raised at meetings or through electronic means will be recorded in the manner of standards discussion. An electronic mail archive will be kept.

GWPG and Subcommittees will adhere at all times to the principles of due process and antitrust compliance as set forth in detail in the Guidelines for Handling SPEC Information.

 

Exceptions to policy: For due cause, the GPWG may vote to approve exceptions to this policy or may adopt resolutions that may conflict with policies expressed in this document; in such cases an amendment to this document will be brought forth within a reasonable time period afterwards.

Conflict with Bylaws or Board:In the event of disagreement between GWPG resolutions vs. SPEC's Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws or decisions by the SPEC Board of Directors, the GWPG shall yield.

Election timing: o maintain continuity and consistency of representation on the GWPG, elections are held at the annual meeting.

Affiliation: Entering into a relationship of affiliation (as defined in the SPEC Bylaws, Section 2.1) does not alone constitute the creation of a vacancy. (For example, Company B is not a member of the GWPG or one of its groups. It buys all the assets of, and takes on all the responsibilities of, Company A, including Company A's OSSC seat.) If, however, such affiliation would cause or appear to cause a member and its affiliate(s) to have two or more votes on the GPWG, then, as described in the Bylaws, a single voting representative shall be designated and one or more vacancies shall be declared.

Voting representative: Each GWPG member institution shall designate a voting representative. If the designated voting representative is absent from a GWPG meeting, another person employed by the member institution (or its affiliates) may temporarily represent the member. In the event of a lack of clarity as to who has the vote, the GWPG Chair may refuse to accept a vote until the designated voting representative appoints a substitute in writing.

Proxies: The GWPG does not allow use of proxy voting (that is, the authorization of an individual who is not an employee of a member institution to vote on behalf of that member), because GWPG members are expected to participate, to be actively involved in discussion, and to evaluate the evidence that may be presented. All GWPG votes shall be open and public votes, except election of officers, which is by secret ballot. Exceptions to the secret ballot may be made if there is only one candidate per office.

It should be noted that the lack of passage of a motion by the GWPG does NOT imply approval of the CONVERSE of the motion.

Advisers: GWPG can, after notification in writing to the Board of Directors, enlist the aid of advisers and consultants from the industry and academe.

Coordination with Board: Certain organizational activities require board participation and approval. For example, the board must approve press releases, setting prices for benchmark licenses, and any major resource, reallocations of SPEC administrative staff and Public Relations to assist with the non-technical aspects of releasing a new benchmark suite. This work may be facilitated by a joint committee of the board and the GPWG (e.g. Planning Committee) or proposals may be brought directly to the board by the Group or Project Group Chair.

5.0 Membership

Terminology note about SPEC "Membership": SPEC is a California nonprofit mutual benefit corporation. governing law has certain formal terminology regarding membership (see, for example, California Corporations Code, sections 5056 and 7331). SPEC's Bylaws authorize only one class of membership in the corporation. It is understood that one sometimes sees the term "member" used in a looser sense, and indeed the law appears to recognize that the term "member" may be used in a less formal sense (7333). However, this section 5.2 follows the formal usage of the Bylaws, which clearly say that SPEC has only one class of "Membership".

Organizations are the sustaining members of the GWPG and its subcommittees. Organizational membership is attained by submission of the designated membership fees or annual dues of any of the GWPG subcommittees. The membership fees and annual dues are set by the Subcommittee and approved by a majority vote of the GWPG.

5.1 Participation in GWPG

Participation in GWPG is open to any organization that has a direct and/or material interest in workstation or graphics performance benchmarking. Members of the GWPG are active participants in one or more Subcommittees.


All members are eligible to nominate candidates for offices and the SPEC Board of Directors, and to champion proposed benchmarks. All members have the opportunity to review and comment on all benchmarks developed by GWPG. This can be done through active participation in the subcommittee developing the suite or during the benchmark's final call for comments.

5.1.1 Participation in Subcommittees

Participation in Subcommittees is open to any organization that has a direct and/or material interest in scope of performance benchmarking for the Subcommittee. In addition, a supporting role is open to any individual who has a direct and/or material interest in the scope of activity and is qualified as a technical expert in this scope of activity. Supporting individuals or organizations participate only in the technical meetings of the Subcommittee.

5.2 Participation Levels

5.2.1 Sustaining Membership

Sustaining membership is offered to any organization that remits the annual membership fee or annual dues.

Universities and non-profit institutions are eligible to become sustaining members, but at their option may prefer to join as "Non-profit Associates", as described in section 5.2.2.2.

Sustaining members may become active participants in any working group or subcommittee of GWPG.

5.2.2 Non-Membership Roles

SPEC does make an effort to accommodate the participation of academic institutions and other non-profit organizations that might be unable to meet the full requirements for Sustaining Membership. Those applying for Non- Membership roles must be willing to abide by SPEC's Bylaws, the Fair Use guidelines, the Guidelines for handling SPEC-confidential material, and GWPG's Charter. Accommodations are made by special arrangement of the GWPG and can include reduced (or waived) dues and other arrangements. These accommodations generally fall into three categories, none of which have voting rights:

  • Ex Officio, may be granted to any organization or individual that can contribute to the overall success of the program,
  • SPEC Associates, those which pay a reduced fee and receive full benefits, and
  • SPEC Supporting Contributor, whose contributions and access is restricted to the one specified benchmark development process.

5.2.2.1 Ex Officio

Ex Officio may be granted to any organization or individual that can contribute to the overall success of the program. Ex Officio is reviewed annually and requires a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the members of the GWPG or respective Subcommittee. Ex Officio does not have voting rights.

5.2.2.2 Associates

To encourage participation from universities and other non-profit institutions interested in its work, SPEC maintains a SPEC Associate role that enables non-profit organizations to share in the SPEC process, but (since they are not full members) does not allow for voting on benchmarks.

Associates pay an initiation fee and annual dues as determined by the Board of Directors.

Associates have the opportunity to review and comment on all benchmarks developed by the GWPG. This can be done through active participation in the subcommittee developing the suite or during the benchmark's final call for comments.

5.2.2.3 Supporting Contributors

The role of Supporting Contributor is available to any commercial organization, academic institution, or individual by invitation only. A subcommittee may issue an invitation to an interested party to apply for this role. The application must be approved by the GWPG and the Board.

Supporting contributors may participate in subcommittees and have no voting rights and pay no dues. Supporting may help develop new benchmark suites, provide expertise to the GWPG or help provide other support within the GWPG.

5.2.2.2 Table of Benefits

SUSTAINING ASSOCIATE EX OFFICIO/SUPPORTING
DUES FULL DISCOUNT NONE
GENERAL MEMBERSHIP VOTING YES NO NO
PARTICIPATE IN FACE-TO-FACE MEETING, CONFERENCE CALLS, BENCHMARK DEVELOPMENT YES YES YES
GWPG WORK IN PROGRESS YES YES YES - if providing support for code; otherwise NO.
ELIGIBLE TO ELECT GWPG OFFICERS YES NO NO
ELIGIBLE TO VOTE FOR BOARD MEMBERS YES NO NO
ELIGIBLE TO PARTICIPATE IN ANY GWPG SUBCOMMITTEES ANY/ALL ANY/ALL ANY/ALL IF SUPPORT IS PROVIDED
COPIES OF GWPG SUITES ALL ALL ALL
SPEC/GWPG EMAIL ALIAS ANY/ALL ANY/ALL Any Supporting
ACCESS TO PRO.SPEC.ORG YES YES LIMITED - Controlled by Chair to selected pages only.
RESULT PUBLICATION ON WWW.SPEC.ORG UNLIMITED UNLIMITED Dependent on new suite support; otherwise, non- member price set by GWPG.
PARTICIPATION PERIOD Dues Paid and meeting other membership Requirements Dues Paid and meeting other participation Requirements ONE YEAR, RENEWABLE. GWPG may terminate at any time.
RESULTS REVIEW YES YES May participate in the results review session for which results were submitted.
ATTEND ANNUAL MEETING YES YES YES
ELIGIBLE FOR GWPG OFFICE YES YES NO

5.3 Officers of Committees and Subcommittees

The officers for the GWPG and each Subcommittee shall be the Chairperson, Vice Chairperson and the Secretary and such subordinate officers as may be appointed by the Chairperson.

The terms of the Chairperson, Vice Chairperson and Secretary shall be one year and each officer shall be elected by a simple majority of the voting members of the respective committee or subcommittee. The number of terms of any officer shall be unlimited.

The Chairperson shall preside at all meetings. The Chairperson may designate the Vice Chairperson or, in the latter's absence, another alternate to serve in his or her place.

The Vice Chairperson shall assist the Chairperson in all duties of the office.

The Secretary shall assure that all activities are accurately recorded. The secretary shall also assure that all records of membership and voting status are maintained.

The Secretary is responsible for preparing and distributing the minutes of all official meetings.

These responsibilities may be carried out with the assistance of SPEC.

5.4 Voting in Organization Sessions of GWPG and Subcommittees

Organization Sessions of GWPG and Subcommittees are those meetings that are convened to address issues that are deemed necessary to conduct the business of the GWPG or Subcommittee. These issues are left to the specific agenda of the GWPG or Subcommittee, but are subject to appeal under the appeal process outlined in the Guidelines Section of these procedures.

Organizations are the voting members in Organization Sessions of the GWPG, and Subcommittees. Each member organization is allowed one vote on any issue. Organizations may send as many representatives as necessary to represent their interests. (This number may be limited if meeting facilities or SPEC is constrained.)

Voting status is achieved by in-person attendance at the second consecutive official (qualified) meeting of the GWPG or Subcommittee.

Voting status is lost if the organization fails to remit payment for membership fees or annual dues. Voting status is restored by payment of these fees or dues.

Voting status is also lost if the organization is not represented in person during at least two consecutive official meetings of the GWPG or subcommittee. Voting status is restored at the second consecutive official meeting after attendance has been resumed.

Issues may be designated for resolution by ballot by voting members of the GWPG or Subcommittee. Ballot may be by standard mail, by electronic means, conference call voice ballot or a combination of any of the three. A ballot is deemed valid if a quorum of eligible voting organizations returns ballots. Voting is Approved, Approved with Comment, Disapproved with Comment, or Abstained with Comment. Disapproval and Abstained votes require comment on the nature of the vote.

5.5 Voting in Technical Sessions of Subcommittees

Technical Sessions of Subcommittees are those meetings in which discussions are based on the technical merit of the issues being addressed. These issues are left to the specific agenda of the Subcommittee, but are subject to appeal under the appeal process outlined in the Guidelines Section of these procedures.