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Upper division under-graduate college students

The challenge is to try parallel computing, not just talk about it.

During the week of May 21st to May 26th in 2006, this author attended a workshop on Parallel and Distributed Computing.  The workshop was given by the National Computational Science Institute and introduced parallel programming using multiple computers (a group of micro computers grouped or clustered into a super-micro computer).  The conference emphasized several important points related to the computer industry:

  1. During the past few years super-micro computers have become more powerful and more available.
  2. Desk top computers are starting to be built with multiple processors (or cores) and we will have multiple (10 to 30) core processors within a few years.
  3. Use of super-micro computing power is wide spread and growing in all areas: scientific research, engineering applications, 3D animation for computer games and education, etc.
  4. There is a shortage of educators, scientific researchers, and computer professionals that know how to manage and utilize this developing resource. Computer professionals needed include: Technicians that know how to create and maintain a super-micro computer; and Programmers that know how to create computer applications that use parallel programming concepts .

This last item was emphasized to those of you beginning a career in computer programming that as you progress in your education, you should be aware of the changing nature of computer programming as a profession.  Within a few years all professional programmers will have to be familiar with parallel programming .

During the conference this author wrote a program that sorts an array of 150,000 integers using two different approaches.  The first way was without parallel processing.  When it was compiled and executed using a single machine, it took 120.324 seconds to run (2 minutes).  The second way was to redesign the program so parts of it could be run on several processors at the same time.  When it was compiled and executed using 11 machines within a cluster of micro-computers, it took 20.974 seconds to run.  That’s approximately 6 times faster.  Thus, parallel programming will become a necessity to be able to utilize the multi-processor hardware of the near future.

A distributed computing environment was set up in a normal computer lab using a Linix operating system stored on a CD. After booting several computers with the CD, the computers can communicate with each other with the support of "Message Passing Interface" or MPI commands. This model known as the Bootable Cluster CD (BCCD) is available from:

Bootable Cluster CD – University of Northern Iowa at: (External Link)

The source code files used during the above workshop were modified to a version 8, thus an 8 is in the filename. The non-parallel processing "super" code was named: nonps8.cpp with the parallel processing "super" code named: ps8.cpp (Note: The parallel processing code contains some comments that describe that part of the code being run by a machine identified as the "SERVER_NODE"  with a part of the code being run by the 10 other machines (the Clients).  The client machines communicate critical information to the server node using "Message Passing Interface" or MPI commands.)

You may need to right click on the link and select "Save Target As" in order to download these source code files.

Download the source code file from Connexions: nonps8.cpp

Download the source code file from Connexions: ps8.cpp

Two notable resources with super computer information were provided by presenters during the workshop:

Oklahoma University – Supercomputing Center for Education&Research at: (External Link)

Contra Costa College – High Performance Computing at: (External Link)

You can also "Google" the topic's key words and spend several days reading and experimenting with High Performance Computing.

Consider reviewing the "Educator Resources" links provided in the next section.

Educator resources

There are many sites that provide materials and assistance to those teaching the many aspects of High Performance Computing. A few of them are:

Shodor – A National Resource for Computational Science Education at: (External Link)

CSERD – Computational Science Education Reference Desk at: (External Link)

National Computational Science Institute at: (External Link)

Association of Computing Machinery at: (External Link)

Super Computing – Education at: (External Link)

Simple definitions

high performance computing
Grouping multiple computers or multiple computer processors to accomplish a task in less time.
sequential processing
Using only one processor and completing the tasks in a sequential order.
parallel processing
Dividing a task into parts that can utilize more than one processor.
central processing unit
The electronic circuitry that actually executes computer instructions.
parallel programming
Involves developing programs that utilize parallel processing algorithms that take advantage of multiple processors.

Questions & Answers

Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
Damian
yes that's correct
Professor
I think
Professor
what is the stm
Brian Reply
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Rafiq
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
Damian
How we are making nano material?
LITNING Reply
what is a peer
LITNING Reply
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LITNING Reply
What is STMs full form?
LITNING
scanning tunneling microscope
Sahil
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Santosh
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
Mahi
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
Rafiq
if virus is killing to make ARTIFICIAL DNA OF GRAPHENE FOR KILLED THE VIRUS .THIS IS OUR ASSUMPTION
Anam
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Anam
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
Bob
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
brayan
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Damian
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
Renato
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
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Kyle
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
Adin
why?
Adin
what school?
Kyle
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
Joe
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
research.net
kanaga
sciencedirect big data base
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Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
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what does nano mean?
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nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
Bharti
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
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Source:  OpenStax, Programming fundamentals - a modular structured approach using c++. OpenStax CNX. Jan 10, 2013 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10621/1.22
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