Plenary Lecture

Task Tree Executor: Evolution and Experience

Professor Miroslav Popovic
University of Novi Sad
E-mail: miroslav.popovic@rt-rk.com

Abstract: Task trees are important class of parallel programs that are found in a broad range of applications, from critical infrastructures such as electricity, oil, and gas distribution networks, to modern large-scale computer games. Nowadays there are many approaches to parallel programming of multicores supported by various parallel programming frameworks, which could serve the purpose, and covering them all in a single lecture would be hardly achievable. Therefore, in this lecture, I switch immediately to a particular kind of task trees that are created and executed by the runtime library named Task Tree Executor (TTE), with which I have a great pleasure to be involved in. It seems appropriate mentioning that the original motive to design and implement TTE was a real-world project with a goal to parallelize a huge FORTRAN package for a legacy electricity distribution management system, back in 2008. The central idea behind the TTE is rather simple: partition a system model, which takes a form of a graph, into a set of slices, and create the corresponding task tree by assigning a task to each slice; the resulting task tree then may be executed in parallel top-down and bottom-up in order to perform various system calculations, a.k.a. system functions. In the lecture, I cover the TTE architecture evolution, which happened in the four distinctive steps, over period 2008-2012, as well as the experience I gathered, mainly the objective results that were provided through the experiments. I will also talk about statistical testing of task trees, and results achieved in that area. Although the focus of the lecture is on a particular kind of parallel programs, the TTE approach should be applicable on a broader class of problems/systems, so that other researchers and practitioners may find inspiration for their own work in it.

Brief Biography of the Speaker: Miroslav V. Popovic was born in Novi Sad, Serbia on February 1, 1961. He received his M.Sc. degree in electrical engineering from the Faculty of technical sciences at the University of Novi Sad, Novi Sad, Serbia, in 1984, and his Ph.D. degree in electrical and computer engineering from the University of Novi Sad, Novi Sad, Serbia, in 1990. His major field of study was computer engineering. He started his career as an assistant professor at the Faculty of technical sciences, where he remained working to the present day. He was promoted to a lecturer (docent) in 1992 and to an associated professor in 1997. Finally, he was promoted to a tenured professor in 2002. He is currently the head of the Chair of computer engineering and can be reached at the University of Novi Sad, Faculty of technical sciences, Department of computing and control, Trg Dositeja Obradovica 6, 21000 Novi Sad, Serbia. He wrote the book Communication Protocol Engineering (Boca Raton, Florida, USA: CRC Press, 2006) and about 150 papers published in international and domestic journals and conference proceedings. His current research interests are in the areas of parallel programming, model-based development, testing, and verification. Prof. Popovic is the member of the program committee of the IEEE Annual Conference on Engineering of Computer Based Systems (ECBS), and also the member of IEEE, IEEE Computer Society, IEEE TC on ECBS, and ACM.

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