SC10 Session Preview: Parallel Active Harmony

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The SC10 Doctoral Showcase is great forum for Ph.D. students in HPC, networking, storage and analysis. To qualify, Doctoral candidates who plan on graduating within the next 12 months submit a short summary of their research. Selected speakers get to present a 15-minute summary of their best research to experts in academia, industry and research laboratories.

As part of the Doctoral Showcase, Ananta Tiwari from the University of Maryland will present Tuning Parallel Applications in Parallel on Wednesday, Nov 17 at 3:30 in Room 399.

We present Parallel Active Harmony — a scalable end-to-end auto-tuner for scientific codes. Harmony takes a search-based collaborative approach to auto-tuning. Application programmers and end-users collaborate to describe and export a set of performance related parameters to the Harmony system. These parameters define a tuning search-space. The auto-tuner monitors the program performance and suggests application adaptation decisions. The decisions are made by a central controller using a parallel search algorithm. Recently, we have been working on making online tuning practical. Our goal is to enable application developers to write applications once and have our auto-tuner adjust the application behavior automatically when run on new systems. We evaluated our system on a parallel multi-block lattice Boltzmann code. The code has five hot-regions and all five are tuned simultaneously at runtime. Performance improved up to 48% for a 512-core run with a minimal cost of 2% (8 cores) extra cores for code-generation.

The Doctoral Showcase has an impressive lineup of talks in store for SC10, so why did I pick this one? Well, I think the world could use a whole lot more Parallel Active Harmony, don’t you?