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November 02, 2010
ENCORE will focus on runtime management of parallelism and data locality for future heterogeneous many-core processors.
BARCELONA, Nov. 2 -- Nowadays the trend in high performance computing is to double the core count every 2 years, potentially leading to chips with 100+ cores in 10-15 years. Developing parallel applications that harness the power of these multi-core chips is the greatest challenge for researchers and companies in the area of scalable computing systems and, arguably, in all of computer science.
The ENCORE (ENabling technologies for a programmable many-CORE) Project objective is to address this challenge by offering a programming model that simplifies the use of multi-core chips and vastly improves their usability, reliability, code portability, and performance scalability. This project will build upon the success of the OpenMP 3.0 programming model and of the European-developed multi-core architecture of the SARC Project, and reinforce European excellence in the areas of multi-core, configurable computing architectures, system software, and tools.
With this aim, the three-year, 3.5MM€ ENCORE Project launched its activities, taking a holistic approach to parallelization and programmability that encompasses the hardware as well as the entire software toolchain (from applications to system software). The ENCORE Project will: (1) define an easy to use parallel programming model that offers code portability across several parallel architectures; (2) develop a runtime management system to dynamically detect, manage, and exploit parallelism, data locality, and resources across several parallel architectures; and (3) provide the appropriate hardware support for the parallel programming and runtime environment to enable scalability, performance, and cost-efficiency.
Coordinated by the Barcelona Supercomputing Center, the ENCORE Project brings together leading organizations in technology research including Delft University of Technology (The Netherlands), Foundation for Research and Technology -- Hellas (Greece), KTH - Royal Institute of Technology (Sweden), Technion - Israel Institute of Technology (Israel), ARM Limited (UK), and Technische Universität Berlin (Germany).
The success of the project is in large part determined by user uptake. For this reason, ENCORE proposes easy-to-use extensions to the mainstream programming languages C and C++, which are widely accepted by the parallel programming community and are strongly supported by industry. Moreover, ENCORE targets homogeneous as well as heterogeneous multi-core architectures, addressing issues related to scheduling for heterogeneous platforms and exploiting data locality.
"The goal of the ENCORE Project is to enable the average programmer to easily and effectively exploit future many-core chips without facing daunting programming challenges, and thus simplifying the adoption of many-core systems" says Alex Ramirez, project technical manager of the ENCORE project and the head of the Heterogeneous Architectures Group of the Computer Science Department at the Barcelona Supercomputing Center.
Source: Barcelona Supercomputing Center
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