Menu
Sun open sources high-performance language

Sun open sources high-performance language

Sun has open-sourced Fortress

Sun has open-sourced the preliminary compiler for its high-performance programming language project, Fortress.

The compiler, released by Sun this week on its Fortress website, is the latest piece of the language to see the light of day, and open sourcing it is an effort to get developers interested.

Fortress is still at an early stage, and Sun said it is aiming to get feedback from programmers in government, academia and industry. While Fortress is a general-purpose language, it has features that Sun says makes it particularly suitable for high-performance computing (HPC), so Sun is focusing on that group as an initial base for the project. Open source is another way of drawing attention from developers with particular interests, Sun said.

The language is one of three developed as part of a US Department of Defense program - DARPA's HPCS program - along with IBM's X10 and Cray's Chapel.

Sun intends the language as a successor to Fortran, still used for many high-performance applications. It is intended to offer far more programmability than existing languages - the ability to address the numerous processors and cores available in HPC projects and modern multicore computer chips.

For instance, it supports implicit parallel computation, meaning it assumes all the work carried out will be split into workloads to be carried out in parallel on different processor resources. Most languages require parallel computation to be explicitly requested.

The language is designed from scratch from the ground up, allowing it to be completely tailored to HPC programming, Sun said: "We aren't tying our hands behind our back by attempting to support legacy and obsolete language features," Sun said in explanatory notes accompanying Fortress.

While that may mean a steeper learning curve for developers, the company is hoping to get developers on board by letting them work in mathematical notation. "It allows programmers to reason in their problem domain without translating entities such as quantities and physical units into unfamiliar abstractions," the company said on the Fortress site.

So far Sun has released a series of draft specifications for the language and formal calculi and soundness proofs for several features, and has demonstrated parallel Fortress execution.

The initial effort targets the Java Virtual Machine, allowing it to run on a large number of platforms, but the intent is for Fortress to run directly on supercomputers with large stores of addressable memory, clusters of commodity hardware, workstations and other common HPC set-ups.


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Featured

Slideshows

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel

Reseller News honoured the leading female front runners of the New Zealand channel at the 2018 Women in ICT Awards (WIICTA) in Auckland. The awards honoured standout individuals across seven categories, spanning Entrepreneur; Innovation; Rising Star; Shining Star; Community; Technical and Achievement.

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel
Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners

Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners

Microsoft honoured leading partners across the channel following a year of customer innovation and market growth in New Zealand. The 2018 Microsoft Partner Awards recognised excellence within the context of the end-user, spanning a host of emerging and established providers.

Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners
Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch

Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch

Introducing the Reseller News Innovation Awards, launched to the channel at the 2018 Judges’ Lunch in Auckland. With more than 70 judges now part of the voting panel, the new-look awards will reflect the changing dynamics of the channel, recognising excellence across customer value and innovation - spanning start-ups, partners, distributors and vendors.

Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch
Show Comments