Workshop main page: Functional High-Performance Computing (FHPC'13)
9:00 - 10:30 — Runtime Techniques for Declarative Parallel Programming
Matthew Fluet.
The Manticore Project(invited talk)
Abstract: The Manticore project is a research effort to design and implement a parallel functional programming language that targets commodity multicore and shared-memory multiprocessors. Our language is a dialect of Standard ML, called Parallel ML (PML), that starts with a strict, mutation-free functional core and extends with both implicitly-threaded constructs for fine-grain parallelism and CML-style explicit concurrency for coarse-grain parallelism.
In this talk, I will motivate and describe the high-points in both the design of the Parallel ML language and the implementation of the Manticore compiler and runtime system. After briefly discussing some notable results among our past research contributions, I will highlight our most recent research efforts. In one line of work, we have demonstrated the importance of treating even commodity desktops and servers as non-uniform memory access (NUMA) machines. This is particularly important for the scalability of parallel garbage collection, where unbalanced work with lower memory traffic is often better than balanced work with high memory traffic. In another line of work, we have explored data-only flattening, a compilation strategy for nested data parallelismthe eschews the traditional vectorization approachwhich transforms both control and data and was designed for wide-vector SIMD architectures. Instead, data-only flattening transforms nested data structures, but leaves control structures intact, a strategy that is better suited to multicore architectures. Finally, we are exploring language features that provide controlled forms of (deterministic and nondeterministic) mutable state within parallel computations. We begin with the observation that there are parallel stateful algorithms that exhibit significantly better performance than the corresponding parallel algorithm without mutable state. To support such algorithms, we extend Manticore two with memoziation of pure functions using a high-performance implementation of a dynamically sized, parallel hash table to provide scalable performance. We are also exploring various execution models for general mutable state, with the crucial design criteria that all executions should preserve the ability to reason locally about the behavior of code.
Sylvain Henry.
ViperVM: a Runtime System for Parallel Functional High-Performance Computing on Heterogeneous Architectures
Abstract: The current trend in high-performance computing is to use heterogeneous architectures (i.e. multi-core with accelerators such as GPUs or Xeon Phi) because they offer very good performance over energy consumption ratios. Programming these architectures is notoriously hard, hence their use is still somewhat restricted to parallel programming experts. The situation is improving with frameworks using high-level programming models to generate efficient computation kernels for these new accelerator architectures. However, an orthogonal issue is to efficiently manage memory and kernel scheduling especially on architectures containing multiple accelerators. Task graph based runtime systems have been a first step towards efficiently automatizing these tasks. However they introduce new challenges of their own such as task granularity adaptation that cannot be easily automatized.
In this paper, we present ViperVM, a runtime system that takes advantage of parallel functional programming to extend task graph based runtime systems and offer new optimization opportunities. The main concept is to replace dynamically created task graphs with pures functional programs. Some functions used in programs are associated to kernels (written in OpenCL, CUDA\ldots). The runtime system performs parallel reduction of these programs and it automatically schedules kernels on available accelerators. An advantage of this model is that it is easy to substitute a kernel execution with an equivalent functional expression in pure functional programs. Hence this mechanism can be used to perform granularity adaptation by replacing big tasks with equivalent expressions involving smaller ones.
11:00 - 12:30 — Parallel Programming Models and Application Classes
Frederik M. Madsen and Andrzej Filinski.
Towards a Streaming Model for Nested Data Parallelism
Abstract: The language-integrated cost semantics for nested data parallelism pioneered by NESL provides an intuitive, high-level model for predicting performance and scalability of parallel algorithms with reasonable accuracy. However, this predictability, obtained through a uniform, parallelism-flattening execution strategy, comes at the price of potentially prohibitive space usage in the common case of computations with an excess of available parallelism, such as matrix multiplication.
We present a simple nested data-parallel functional language and associated cost semantics that retains NESL's intuitive work--depth model for time complexity, but also allows highly parallel computations to be expressed in a space-efficient way, in the sense that memory usage on a single (or a few) processors is of the same order as for a sequential formulation of the algorithm, and in general scales smoothly with the actually realized degree of parallelism, not the potential parallelism.
The refined semantics is based on distinguishing formally between fully materialized _vectors_ and potentially ephemeral _sequences_ of values, with the latter being bulk-processable in a streaming fashion. This semantics is directly compatible with previously proposed piecewise execution models for nested data parallelism, but allows the expected space usage to be reasoned about directly at the source-language level.
The language definition and implementation are still very much work in progress, but we do present some preliminary examples and timings, suggesting that the streaming model has practical potential.
Qi Wang, Meixian Chen, Yu Liu and Zhenjiang Hu.
Towards Systematic Parallel Programming of Graph Problems via Tree Decomposition and Tree Parallelism
Abstract: Many graph optimization problems, such as the Maximum Weighted Independent Set problem, are NP-hard. For large scale graphs that have billions of edges or vertices, these problems are hard to be computed directly even using popular data-intensive frameworks like MapReduce or Pregel that are deployed on large computer-clusters, because of the extremely high computational complexity. On the other hand, many studies have shown the existence of polynomial time algorithms on graphs with bounded treewidth, which makes it possible to solve these problems on large graphs. However, the algorithms are usually difficult to be understood or parallelized.
In this paper, we propose a novel programming framework which provides a user-friendly programming interface and automatic in-black-box parallelization. The programming interface, which is a simple and straightforward abstraction called Generate-Test-Aggregate (GTA for short), is used to describe a set of graph problems. We propose to derive bottom-up dynamic programming algorithms on tree decompositions from the user-specified GTA algorithms, and further transform the bottom-up algorithms to parallel ones which run in a divide-and-conquer manner on a list of subtrees. Besides, balanced tree partition strategies are discussed for efficient parallel computing. Our preliminary experimental results on the Maximum Weighted Independent Set problem demonstrate the practical viability of our approaches.
Josef Svenningsson, Joel Svensson and Mary Sheeran.
Counting and Occurrence sort for GPUs using an Embedded Language
Abstract: This paper investigates two sorting algorithms: counting sort and a variation, occurrence sort, which also removes duplicate elements, and examines their suitability for running on the GPU. The duplicate removing variation turns out to have a natural functional, data-parallel implementation which makes it particularly interesting for GPUs.
The algorithms are implemented in Obsidian, a high-level domain specific language for GPU programming.
Measurements show that our implementations in many cases outperform the sorting algorithm provided by the library Thrust. Furthermore, occurrence sort is another factor of two faster than ordinary counting sort. We conclude that counting sort is an important contender when considering sorting algorithms for the GPU, and that occurrence sort is highly preferable when applicable. We also show that Obsidian can produce very competitive code.
13:30 - 14:30 — Optimizing Compilation of Functional Programs
Troels Henriksen and Cosmin E. Oancea.
A T2 Graph-Reduction Approach To Fusion
Abstract: Fusion is one of the most important code transformations as it has the potential to substantially optimize both the memory hierarchy time overhead and (sometimes asymptotically) the space requirement.
In imperative languages, the legality of loop-fusion is typically verified by dependency analysis on arrays applied at loop-nest level. Such analysis, however, has often been labeled as ``heroic effort'' and, if at all, is supported only in its simplest and most conservative form in industrial compilers.
In functional languages, fusion is naturally and more easily derived as a producer-consumer relation between program constructs that expose a richer, higher-order algebra of program invariants, such as the map-reduce list homomorphisms.
Related implementations in the functional context typically apply fusion only when the to-be-fused producer is used exactly once, i.e., in the consumer. This guarantees that the transformation is conservative: the resulting program does not duplicate computation.
We show that the above restriction is more conservative than needed, and present a structural-analysis algorithm, inspired from the T1-T2 transformation for reducible data flow, that enables fusion even in some cases when the producer is used in different consumers AND without duplicating computation.
We report an implementation of the fusion algorithm for a functional-core language, named L0, which is intended to support nested parallelism across regular multi-dimensional arrays. We succinctly describe L0's semantics and the compiler infrastructure on which the fusion transformation relies, and present compiler-generated statistics related to the success of fusion analysis on a set of six benchmarks.
Artjoms Sinkarovs and Sven-Bodo Scholz.
Sematics-Preserving Data Layout Transformations for Improved Vectorisation
Abstract: Data-Layouts that are favourable from an algorithmic perspective often are less suitable for vectorisation, i.e., for an effective use of modern processor's vector instructions.
This paper presents work on a compiler driven approach towards automatically transforming data layouts into a form that is suitable for vectorisation. In particular, we present a program transformation for a first-order functional array programming language that systematically modifies they layouts of all data structures.
At the same time, the transformation also adjusts the code that operates on these structures so that the overall computation remains unchanged. We define a correctness criterion for layout modifying program transformations and we show that our transformation abides to this criterion.
14:30 - 15:30 — Libraries for Parallel Functional Programming
Lindsey Kuper and Ryan R. Newton.
LVars: Lattice-based Data Structures for Deterministic Parallelism
Abstract: Programs written using a deterministic-by-construction model of parallel computation are guaranteed to always produce the same observable results, offering programmers freedom from subtle, hard-to-reproduce nondeterministic bugs that are the scourge of parallel software. We present a new model for deterministic-by-construction parallel programming that generalizes existing single-assignment models to allow multiple assignments that are monotonically increasing with respect to a user-specified partial order. Our model achieves determinism by using a novel shared data structure that allows only monotonic writes and "threshold" reads that block until a lower bound is reached. We give a proof of determinism and a prototype implementation for our model and describe how to extend it to support a limited form of nondeterminism that admits failures but never wrong answers.
Mauro Blanco, Pablo Perdomo, Pablo Ezzatti, Alberto Pardo and Marcos Viera.
Towards a functional run-time for dense NLA domain
Abstract: We investigate the use of functional programming to develop a numerical linear algebra run-time; i.e. a framework where the solvers can be adapted easily to different contexts and task parallelism can be attained (semi-) automatically. We follow a bottom up strategy, where the first step is the design and implementation of a framework layer, composed by a functional version of BLAS routines. Using this framework, we implement a functional version of Cholesky factorization, which serves as a proof of concept to evaluate the flexibility and performance of our approach.
16:00 - 17:30 — Data Parallelism
Manuel Chakravarty.
Data Parallelism in Haskell(invited talk)
Abstract: The implicit data parallelism in collective operations on aggregate data structures constitutes an attractive parallel programming model for functional languages. Beginning with our work on integrating nested data parallelism into Haskell, we explored a variety of different approaches to array-centric data parallel programming in Haskell, experimented with a range of code generation and optimisation strategies, and targeted both multicore CPUs and GPUs. In addition to practical tools for parallel programming, the outcomes of this research programme include more widely applicable concepts, such as Haskell’s type families and stream fusion. In this talk, I will contrast the different approaches to data parallel programming that we explored. I will discuss their strengths and weaknesses and review what we have learnt in the course of exploring the various options. This includes our experience of implementing these approaches in the Glasgow Haskell Compiler as well the experimental results that we have gathered so far. Finally, I will outline the remaining open challenges and our plans for the future.
This talk is based on joint work with Gabriele Keller, Sean Lee, Roman Leshchinskiy, Ben Lippmeier, Trevor L. McDonell, and Simon Peyton Jones.
Panel: (Clemens Grelck -UvA, Manuel Chakravarty -UNSW, Neal GlewR.Newton - Ind.U, R.S.Nikhil -Bluespec, Cosmin Oancea -DIKU)
Data Parallelism and GPU Computing
Abstract: Highly parallel platforms like modern graphics processing units (GPUs) require new programming paradigms to go beyond small-scale parallelism. Functional languages are promising candidates for this new challenge, and substantial work has been done in the recent past towards executing functional code on GPUs, but accelerator programming is not all sunshine and roses. We will discuss the state of art and related questions with a panel of invited experts.
  • What particular opportunities and obstacles do functional languages expose for modern day massively parallel hardware (GPUs, FPGAs)?
  • What are desirable hardware features to facilitate programming modern hardware in the functional paradigm and which features are rather in the way?
  • How do differences between classical (vector) processors and modern accelerator architectures affect, or even drive, (functional) language design and implementation?
  • How do you envision "Joe programmer" to make use of presumably highly parallel and heterogeneous hardware in 10 to 15 years' time?