SC19 Proceedings

The International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage, and Analysis

LLVM in HPC: Exciting Developments Again This Year!

Authors: Hal Finkel (Argonne National Laboratory, LLVM Foundation), James Brodman (Intel Corporation), John Leidel (Tactical Computing Laboratories)

Abstract: The LLVM compiler infrastructure is a core open-source project powering compilers and language-processing tools, both open source and proprietary, across the HPC ecosystem. In this BoF, a group of LLVM experts who are driving the development of LLVM (including contributors from ARM, Intel, NVIDIA, and other vendors) will give short presentations of their work, discuss exciting developments, then answer your questions on LLVM and its future in HPC.

Our goal is to connect you with LLVM experts so that you understand some of the uses of LLVM, and they understand what tools and LLVM enhancements you desire.

Long Description: HPC programmers rely on compilers and analysis tools. LLVM is the environment of choice for the development of such tools, and thus should be of interest to many HPC programmers.

Moreover, a lot of exciting things have happened over the last year that are relevant to HPC. New loop optimizations and vectorization capabilities, SVE support for future ARM architectures, LLVM has an official Flang Fortran project, advancements in OpenMP support on modern CPUs and accelerators, and more.

The goals of the BoF are: to educate people who are interested in LLVM, but not actively involved in the development about its current state, and about the compilers/tools which are built on top of it; to allow people who are interested in using LLVM in their projects to question LLVM experts and to understand why LLVM should matter to them; to give feedback to the experts about where our audience wants LLVM to be developing, and to allow LLVM users to put faces to the names of people they have seen only on mail lists.

The expected audience is both people who are developing programming tools which use, or may use, LLVM, such as compilers, performance analysis tools, code re-writing tools, runtime libraries, new languages, ... and also the users of such systems. Users should be interested in the state of the LLVM environment since it can allow them to use LLVM based compilers on multiple platforms, including support for the latest OpenMP standards, reducing the effort needed to port codes by providing the same language dialects on all supported platforms.

A similar BOF was held last year, and the year before, and over 100 people attended both times. Our evaluations from last year had all 5/5 scores, with comments including, “What a great discussion! Wish we had more time…” and “I learned a lot from this BoF. A lot of new information and great interaction between presenters and the audience.” This demonstrates that we achieved a good balance last year between the experts talking and general discussion.

The tangible result of the BoF will be a report summarizing the discussions which take place which can be published on the LLVM mailing list so that the entire LLVM community can benefit from the feedback provided at the BoF, and this will be mentioned in the LLVM weekly news.

The intangible results should include more awareness of LLVM in the HPC community and more contacts between end-users and tools writers.


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