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High Performance Computing: Programming and Applications [Hardcover]

John Levesque , Gene Wagenbreth

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Book Description

Dec 14 2010 1420077058 978-1420077056

High Performance Computing: Programming and Applications presents techniques that address new performance issues in the programming of high performance computing (HPC) applications. Omitting tedious details, the book discusses hardware architecture concepts and programming techniques that are the most pertinent to application developers for achieving high performance. Even though the text concentrates on C and Fortran, the techniques described can be applied to other languages, such as C++ and Java.

Drawing on their experience with chips from AMD and systems, interconnects, and software from Cray Inc., the authors explore the problems that create bottlenecks in attaining good performance. They cover techniques that pertain to each of the three levels of parallelism:

  • Message passing between the nodes
  • Shared memory parallelism on the nodes or the multiple instruction, multiple data (MIMD) units on the accelerator
  • Vectorization on the inner level

After discussing architectural and software challenges, the book outlines a strategy for porting and optimizing an existing application to a large massively parallel processor (MPP) system. With a look toward the future, it also introduces the use of general purpose graphics processing units (GPGPUs) for carrying out HPC computations. A companion website at www.hybridmulticoreoptimization.com contains all the examples from the book, along with updated timing results on the latest released processors.

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About the Author

John Levesque works in the Chief Technology Office at Cray Inc., where he is responsible for application performance on Cray’s HPC systems. He is also director of Cray’s Supercomputing Center of Excellence at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). ORNL was the first site to install a Petaflop Cray XT5 system, Jaguar; as of June 2010, it is the fastest computer in the world according to the TOP500 list.
For the past 40 years, Mr. Levesque has optimized scientific application programs for successful HPC systems. He is an expert in application tuning and compiler analysis of scientific applications.

Gene Wagenbreth is a senior system programmer in the Information Sciences Institute at the University of Southern California, where he is applying GPGPU technology in sparse matrix solvers, image tomography, and real-time computational fluid dynamics. He also presents courses on the use and programming of GPUs.
Since the 1970s, Mr. Wagenbreth has worked with most of the highest performance computers, including Cray models, other vector processors, hypercubes, and clusters. He has worked with shared and distributed memory computers using MPI, OpenMP, pthreads, and other techniques. He has also applied parallel processing in numerous fields, including seismic analysis, reservoir simulation, weather forecasting, and battlefield simulations.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Amazon.com: 3.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
3.0 out of 5 stars The material is excellent, but the Kindle format is horrible. Jan. 3 2014
By Donald Morton - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
For someone who's been affiliated with HPC for 20+ years, more at the machine-independent level, this book served as an excellent review of things I've only touched lightly on over the years, as well as providing more depth at a level closer to the hardware. It's well-written, but I think someone would want to have just a little bit of computer architecture course work to really get this. And, indeed, in the introduction the book states that it's meant for the HPC applications programmer.

For the material itself, I would give it 4 or 5 stars, but the Kindle formatting is really bad. Here is just one line, randomly picked from the page I'm currently on

A ctually, t he loop is n ot vectorized d ue to t he st riding through memory.

Imagine reading a full book like this. It's material I'm interested in, and I'm willing to cut through it this way, but it seems a shame. On the other hand, unlike many other Kindle books, figures and code samples are formatted very well. Somehow, they just didn't get it when it came to typesetting. I should note that I've only tried reading this on my iPad Kindle Reader.

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