We recently reported that Microsoft has published two articles on Parallel Extensions for the .NET Framework (PFX), an upcoming set of libraries which allow straightforward expression and coordination of data-parallel queries and task-parallel operations. Now, in this video on Channel9, Anders Hejlsberg (Microsoft Chief Architect for C# and LINQ) and Joe Duffy (Senior Software engineer for the MS Parallel Computing Division) give a white-board overview of PFX.
The video includes a nice discussion of the Task Parallel Library (TPL) architecture, which implements dynamic work stealing for lightweight load-balancing across processors. While issues of shared state must still be managed explicitly by the programmer, PFX does provide some helpful tools in this area, including 1) a TPL construct for Aggregation between multiple threads, and 2) a Task Manager which allows the programmer to force sequential operation for debugging.
Need more? Here’s Scott Hanselman’s recent podcast interview of developer Stephen Toub, discussing some more PFX details and concepts.
Combining these tools with Windows Communication Foundation will make interoperable, scalable computing platforms easier than ever to build. Compute-bound scalability, that is…license-bound scalability with MS is a whole ‘nother issue.