In this special guest feature, James Reinders discusses the use of the Intel® Advanced Vector Instructions (Intel® AVX-512), covering a variety of vectorization techniques available for accessing the performance of Intel AVX-512.
Today the Google Cloud Platform announced that it is the first cloud provider to offer the next generation Intel Xeon processor, codenamed Skylake. “Skylake includes Intel Advanced Vector Extensions (AVX-512), which make it ideal for scientific modeling, genomic research, 3D rendering, data analytics and engineering simulations. When compared to previous generations, Skylake’s AVX-512 doubles the floating-point performance for the heaviest calculations. In our own internal tests, it improved application performance by up to 30%.”
While there have been previous generations of AVX instructions, the AVX-512 instructions can significantly assist the performance of HPC applications. “The new AVX-512 instructions have been designed with developers in mind. High level languages that are used for HPC applications, such as FORTRAN and C/C++, through a compiler will be able to use the new instructions. This can be accomplished through the use of pragmas to direct the compilers to generate the new instructions, or users can use libraries which are tuned to the new technology.”