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GNU Tools Cauldron 2014 - Accelerator BoF

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Published on Sep 4, 2014

Presenter: Thomas Schwinge

Abstract:
In this BoF, we will discuss how we can support accelerators (e.g., GPGPUs) in GCC. This is a rather wide problem and raises questions ranging from which programming abstractions to support (e.g., OpenMP 4.0 accelerator extensions, OpenACC, and others) to which accelerator (virtual) ISAs to support -- and everything in between. The goal of
this session is to continue the discussion started in last year's Accelerator BoF, quickly review what has happened since, and coordinate which next steps to take. Possible sub-topics for discussion include:

* Front-end issues: Which programming abstractions for parallelization on accelerators at the programming-language level do we target? OpenMP 4.0 will include accelerator abstractions; OpenACC has similar features. Are there features that are shared across several programming abstractions (e.g., ways to put constraints on regions of code so that it can indeed be executed on a particular accelerator)?

* Which infrastructure do we need in the middle-end to support different language-level abstractions without a lot of duplicated
code? Which GCC-internal abstractions do we need? Can we have a single shared internal representation of accelerator code? How
do we deal with issues such as heterogeneous accelerator hardware or separate address spaces on accelerators? How do we represent communication between hosts and accelerators? Is the current
SIMD support sufficient for accelerator code too?

* Back-end questions: Which (virtual) architectures do we want to target first? Should we target low-level programming abstractions such as OpenCL, too? Which additional runtimes do we want to -- or need to -- bind to? Can/should we target
existing runtimes, or do we need to build our own (glue) layers?

* Testing: Do we need anything special to test all of this?

* Other GNU tools: What do we need to do in other tools such as GDB?

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