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Preparing for Many-Core

Texas Advanced Computing Center (05/03/12) Aaron Dubrow

The Texas Advanced Computing Center recently hosted the Intel Highly Parallel Computing Symposium, which showcased the experiences of researchers who had ported their scientific computing codes to Intel’s Knights Ferry software development platform, the prototype hardware and software development package for Intel’s Many Integrated Core (MIC) architecture.  More than 100 participants from many sectors of the science and technology community attended the symposium.  Intel engineers James Reinders and Tim Mattson focused on the goals and research processes that led to the development of Intel’s MIC architecture, and the ecosystem of libraries, kernels, and programming paradigms that Intel hopes will make its new coprocessors a long-term success in the high-performance computing community.  “The architecture for many-core is still being determined,” Mattson notes, and he says more than a dozen research groups at Intel are working on the many-core problem.  One key topic of the symposium was vectorization, which refers to programs that are modified to perform the same operation many times simultaneously on a large number of operations.  The symposium also highlighted the promise and challenge of implementing existing codes on Intel’s new coprocessor.

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