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Locally-Oriented Programming: A Simple Programming Model for Stencil-Based Computations on Multi-Level Distributed Memory Architectures

Craig Rasmussen, Matthew Sottile, Daniel Nagle, Soren Rasmussen
University of Oregon, Eugene, Oregon, USA
arXiv:1502.03504 [cs.PL], (12 Feb 2015)

@article{rasmussen2015locallyoriented,

   title={Locally-Oriented Programming: A Simple Programming Model for Stencil-Based Computations on Multi-Level Distributed Memory Architectures},

   author={Rasmussen, Craig and Sottile, Matthew and Nagle, Daniel and Rasmussen, Soren},

   year={2015},

   month={feb},

   archivePrefix={"arXiv"},

   primaryClass={cs.PL}

}

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Emerging hybrid accelerator architectures for high performance computing are often suited for the use of a data-parallel programming model. Unfortunately, programmers of these architectures face a steep learning curve that frequently requires learning a new language (e.g., OpenCL). Furthermore, the distributed (and frequently multi-level) nature of the memory organization of clusters of these machines provides an additional level of complexity. This paper presents preliminary work examining how programming with a local orientation can be employed to provide simpler access to accelerator architectures. A locally-oriented programming model is especially useful for the solution of algorithms requiring the application of a stencil or convolution kernel. In this programming model, a programmer codes the algorithm by modifying only a single array element (called the local element), but has read-only access to a small sub-array surrounding the local element. We demonstrate how a locally-oriented programming model can be adopted as a language extension using source-to-source program transformations.
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