Past, Present, Parallel: A Survey of Available Parallel Computer Systems

Springer Science & Business Media
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Past, Present, Parallel is a survey of the current state of the parallel processing industry. In the early 1980s, parallel computers were generally regarded as academic curiosities whose natural environment was the research laboratory. Today, parallelism is being used by every major computer manufacturer, although in very different ways, to produce increasingly powerful and cost-effec- tive machines. The first chapter introduces the basic concepts of parallel computing; the subsequent chapters cover different forms of parallelism, including descriptions of vector supercomputers, SIMD computers, shared memory multiprocessors, hypercubes, and transputer-based machines. Each section concentrates on a different manufacturer, detailing its history and company profile, the machines it currently produces, the software environments it supports, the market segment it is targetting, and its future plans. Supplementary chapters describe some of the companies which have been unsuccessful, and discuss a number of the common software systems which have been developed to make parallel computers more usable. The appendices describe the technologies which underpin parallelism. Past, Present, Parallel is an invaluable reference work, providing up-to-date material for commercial computer users and manufacturers, and for researchers and postgraduate students with an interest in parallel computing.
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Publisher
Springer Science & Business Media
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Published on
Dec 6, 2012
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Pages
392
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ISBN
9781447118428
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Language
English
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Genres
Computers / Information Technology
Computers / Networking / Hardware
Computers / Programming / General
Computers / Systems Architecture / General
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This content is DRM protected.
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This volume contains papers presented at the BCS-FACS Workshop on Specification and Verification of Concurrent Systems held on 6-8 July 1988, at the University of Stirling, Scotland. Specification and verification techniques are playing an increasingly important role in the design and production of practical concurrent systems. The wider application of these techniques serves to identify difficult problems that require new approaches to their solution and further developments in specification and verification. The Workshop aimed to capture this interplay by providing a forum for the exchange of the experience of academic and industrial experts in the field. Presentations included: surveys, original research, practical experi ence with methods, tools and environments in the following or related areas: Object-oriented, process, data and logic based models and specifi cation methods for concurrent systems Verification of concurrent systems Tools and environments for the analysis of concurrent systems Applications of specification languages to practical concurrent system design and development. We should like to thank the invited speakers and all the authors of the papers whose work contributed to making the Workshop such a success. We were particularly pleased with the international response to our call for papers. Invited Speakers Pierre America Philips Research Laboratories University of Warwick Professor M. Joseph David Freestone British Telecom Organising Committee Charles Rattray Dr Muffy Thomas Dr Simon Jones Dr John Cooke Professor Ken Turner Derek Coleman Maurice Naftalin Dr Peter Scharbach vi Preface We would like to aeknowledge the finaneial eontribution made by SD-Sysems Designers pie, Camberley, Surrey.
Performance Evaluation, Prediction and Visualization in Parallel Systems presents a comprehensive and systematic discussion of theoretics, methods, techniques and tools for performance evaluation, prediction and visualization of parallel systems. Chapter 1 gives a short overview of performance degradation of parallel systems, and presents a general discussion on the importance of performance evaluation, prediction and visualization of parallel systems. Chapter 2 analyzes and defines several kinds of serial and parallel runtime, points out some of the weaknesses of parallel speedup metrics, and discusses how to improve and generalize them. Chapter 3 describes formal definitions of scalability, addresses the basic metrics affecting the scalability of parallel systems, discusses scalability of parallel systems from three aspects: parallel architecture, parallel algorithm and parallel algorithm-architecture combinations, and analyzes the relations of scalability and speedup. Chapter 4 discusses the methodology of performance measurement, describes the benchmark- oriented performance test and analysis and how to measure speedup and scalability in practice. Chapter 5 analyzes the difficulties in performance prediction, discusses application-oriented and architecture-oriented performance prediction and how to predict speedup and scalability in practice. Chapter 6 discusses performance visualization techniques and tools for parallel systems from three stages: performance data collection, performance data filtering and performance data visualization, and classifies the existing performance visualization tools. Chapter 7 describes parallel compiling-based, search-based and knowledge-based performance debugging, which assists programmers to optimize the strategy or algorithm in their parallel programs, and presents visual programming-based performance debugging to help programmers identify the location and cause of the performance problem. It also provides concrete suggestions on how to modify their parallel program to improve the performance. Chapter 8 gives an overview of current interconnection networks for parallel systems, analyzes the scalability of interconnection networks, and discusses how to measure and improve network performances.
Performance Evaluation, Prediction and Visualization in Parallel Systems serves as an excellent reference for researchers, and may be used as a text for advanced courses on the topic.
Load Balancing in Parallel Computers: Theory and Practice is about the essential software technique of load balancing in distributed memory message-passing parallel computers, also called multicomputers. Each processor has its own address space and has to communicate with other processors by message passing. In general, a direct, point-to-point interconnection network is used for the communications. Many commercial parallel computers are of this class, including the Intel Paragon, the Thinking Machine CM-5, and the IBM SP2.
Load Balancing in Parallel Computers: Theory and Practice presents a comprehensive treatment of the subject using rigorous mathematical analyses and practical implementations. The focus is on nearest-neighbor load balancing methods in which every processor at every step is restricted to balancing its workload with its direct neighbours only. Nearest-neighbor methods are iterative in nature because a global balanced state can be reached through processors' successive local operations. Since nearest-neighbor methods have a relatively relaxed requirement for the spread of local load information across the system, they are flexible in terms of allowing one to control the balancing quality, effective for preserving communication locality, and can be easily scaled in parallel computers with a direct communication network.
Load Balancing in Parallel Computers: Theory and Practice serves as an excellent reference source and may be used as a text for advanced courses on the subject.
The cooperation test [Apt, Francez & de Roever] was originally conceived to capture the proof theoretical analogue of distributed message exchange between disjoint processes, as opposed to the interference freedom test [Owicki & Gries], being the proof theoretical analogue of concurrent communication by means of interference through jointly shared variables. Some authors ([Levin & Gries, Lamport & Schneider, Schlichting and Schneider]) stress that both forms of communication can be proof theoretically characterized using interference freedom only, since proofs for both ultimately amount to an invariance proof of a big global assertion [Ashcroft], invariance of whose parts amounts to interference freedom. Yet I feel that the characteristic nature of the cooperation test is still preserved in the analysis of these authors, because in their analysis of CSP the part dealing with interference freedom specializes to maintenance of a global invariant, the expression of which requires per process the introduction of auxiliary variables which are updated in that process only, thus preserving the concept of disjointness (as opposed to sharing), since now all variables from different processes are disjoint. The cooperation test has been applied to characterize concurrent communication as occurring in Hoare's Communicating Sequential Processes (CSP) [Hoare 2], Ichbiah's ADA [ARM], and Brinch Hansen's Distributed Processes (DP) [Brinch Hansen]. This characterization has been certified through soundness and completeness proofs [Apt 2, Gerth]. As in the interference freedom test this characterization consists of two stages, a local sequential stage and a global stage.
A remote Scottish island plays host to a deadly reunion...

It should be a lot of fun, meeting up for a long weekend in a rented lighthouse on a chunk of rock miles from anywhere. There will be drinks and games and all sorts of other amusements. It is ten years since the last get-together and twenty years since Nadia and her friends graduated from university. But not everything goes according to plan. One of the group has a more sinister agenda and, as events begin to spiral out of control, it becomes clear that not everyone will get off the island alive...


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