KEYNOTE: Experiences in Using Directive-based Programming for Accelerated Computing Architectures

Dr. Jack Wells, the Director of Science for the Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility (OLCF) at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Tennessee, USA will be giving the Keynote at the workshop.


Jack Wells

Dr. Jack Wells is the Director of Science for the Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility (OLCF), a DOE Office of Science national user facility, and the Titan supercomputer, located at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). Wells is responsible for the scientific outcomes of the OLCF’s user programs.

Wells has previously led both ORNL’s Computational Materials Sciences group in the Computer Science and Mathematics Division and the Nanomaterials Theory Institute in the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences. Prior to joining ORNL as a Wigner Fellow in 1997, Wells was a postdoctoral fellow within the Institute for Theoretical Atomic and Molecular Physics at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

Wells has a Ph.D. in physics from Vanderbilt University, and has authored or co-authored over 80 scientific papers and edited 1 book, spanning nanoscience, materials science and engineering, nuclear and atomic physics computational science, applied mathematics, and text-based data analytics.


Accelerated computing architectures have grown in their application within scientific computing since their introduction  approximately ten-years ago.  From the earliest days, there has been a focus on the programmability of these systems.  A variety of desired outcomes have driven the development of directive-based programming approaches for accelerated computing, including improvements in developer productivity and application portability, APIs that are non-proprietary or vendor non specific, and that support incremental acceleration of application codes.  The first specification was OpenACC 1.0 introduced in November 2011.  With major enhancements, OpenACC has evolved to version 2.5, and is providing constructive inputs to the OpenMP specification. In this talk, we discuss how the use of compiler directives have evolved over time and their implementation status on Titan and Summit. The talk will also discuss which applications on Titan are using directives and how their usage has been changing over time. To end, we will discuss the challenges that need to be solved and how new emerging frameworks are changing the way applications are using directives (e.g. as backends for Kokkos, etc) for C++.


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