Allinea Tools Introduce Australia’s ‘Awesome’ Future Workforce to Efficient Supercomputing

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Transcript of Allinea Tools Introduce Australia’s ‘Awesome’ Future Workforce to Efficient Supercomputing

  1. 1. Case Study: Allinea Tools Introduce Australias Awesome Future Workforce to Efficient Supercomputing Snapshot Client: Western Australias iVEC is an unincorporated joint venture between Australias National Science Agency and four western Australian universities. Situation: Rebecca Hartman-Baker is inspiring students to become the workforce Western Australia will need for its world-class research projects. Solution: Throw a profiling party to make code-optimization a fun activity. Success: Allinea MAP makes profiling code awesome. Summary quote: These students are the cream of the crop and the Allinea tools will definitely help them to become more competent computational scientists. Rebecca Hartman-Baker, iVEC Supercomputing Development and Applications SpecialistTalk to Rebecca Hartman-Baker, and youll notice she says awesome a lot. In fact, while working at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in Tennessee, a friend gave her a lanyard that said Team Awesome. Everyone coveted my lanyard, she chuckles. So she ordered 100 more to reward people who did awesome things. When she moved across the world for an opportunity to help establish a new supercomputing center in Western Australia, the lanyards came too. These days, some are likely finding their way into the hands of students. Thats because teaching and inspiring Western Australias up and coming researchers is a big part of her job. One of the tools shes teaching students to use is Allinea MAP because of its awesome ease-ofuse.Its a great tool to get people comfortable with profiling, diagnosing and fixing problems in their code.Why hold a clinic when you can throw a party? Given her proclivity for fun, it isnt surprising Hartman-Baker called her first user-clinic a profiling party. A clinic sounds so unapproachable but a party sounds harmless and fun, she says. It attracts people to come and give profiling a try. Hartman-Baker says its important to realize many people are scared to try new tools. A lot of them have never taken a computer science class; they picked up programming from their PhD. advisor or other grad students. They dont care about the computer and they dont understand that choices they make in their algorithms can make a big difference in performance. As it turned out, Allinea MAP is the perfect tool for a party. People can run their code and see results quickly. Theres no steep learning curve to bust the festive vibe.Rebecca Hartman-Baker and team standing in front of the Pawsey Centre.
  2. 2. Case Study: Allinea Tools Introduce Australias Awesome Future Workforce to Efficient SupercomputingOptimizing Code for Worlds Largest Radio TelescopeMaking History at SC13During the profiling party, a radio astronomy grad student arrived with code designed to filter and process data from the Murchison Widefield Array, one of three precursor telescopes for the Square Kilometer Array (SKA). The SKA will be the worlds largest radio telescope when in full operation in 2024. Radio telescopes reveal areas of space otherwise obscured or not visible with optical telescopes. Most of the codes execution time was spent in a nested loop with six levels. Hartman-Baker showed the student how to experiment with two different loop configurations, using Allinea MAP and see which gives , the optimal performance.Beyond profiling parties, HartmanBaker will use Allinea MAP for an even more ambitious project. Shes mounting a team of undergraduate students from iVECs partner universities to compete as the first-ever team from Australia in the SC13 student cluster competition. During the 48-hour event, students assemble a cluster, not to exceed the 26-amp power limit, on the SC13 exhibit floor. They run three set codes and one mystery code to solve as many problems as they can before the time is up.Experimenting with a piece of code could be construed as a waste of time, but Allinea MAPs intuitive GUI and straightforward approach made the experience enjoyable. We didnt have to consult the manual except for clarification about what certain metrics meant, says Hartman-Baker. Shes planning to throw another profiling party soon. Next time Ill bring some popcorn, she jokes.Each project will require significant supercomputing resources and skilled researchers. For her part, Hartman-Baker is leading the decision-making process during iVECs purchase of a petaflop machine as well as cultivating the talents of up-and-coming researchers. Thats why I came here: for the opportunity to work on these projects and for the chance to work with these students, she says. Shes starting them off on the right footing. With awesome tools like Allinea MAP and Allinea DDT, theyll develop the programming habits they need to work at a large scale and make the best of their new supercomputer.Allinea is donating licences for both Allinea MAP and its popular Allinea DDT debugger during the run-up and competition.In one configuration the cache performance looked better, but there were other factors that made the total time spent in the loop longer, says Hartman-Baker.Allinea Software Inc. 2033 Gateway Pl Ste. 500, San Jose, CA. 95110 USA Tel: +1 (408) 884 0282research, including the SKA program.With Allinea MAP well be able to quickly profile our codes, figure out the hotspots and optimize to get more work done in the given amount of time, says HartmanBaker.Awesome Potential Its an exciting time for supercomputing in Western Australia. In 2009, the Australian government committed $80 million, under its Super Science Initiative, to develop the Pawsey Supercomputing Center. The centers primary purpose is to support high-powered AustralianAllinea Software Ltd. The Innovation Centre, Warwick Technology Park, Gallows Hill, Warwick CV34 6UW UK Tel: +44 (0)1926 623 231 Fax: +44 (0)1926 623 232For more information about the Allinea environment, visit