Scalable, extensible, and portable numerical libraries

W. Gropp, B. Smith

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Designing a scalable and portable numerical library requires consideration of many factors, including choice of parallel communication technology, data structures, and user interfaces. The PETSc library (Portable Extensible Tools for Scientific computing) makes use of modern software technology to provide a flexible and portable implementation. This paper discusses the use of a meta-communication layer (allowing the user to choose different transport layers such as MPI, p4, pvm, or vendor-specific libraries) for portability, an aggressive data-structure-neutral implementation that minimizes dependence on particular data structures (even vectors), permitting the library to adapt to the user rather than the other way around, and the separation of implementation language from user-interface language. Examples are presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of Scalable Parallel Libraries Conference, SPLC 1993
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)0818649801, 9780818649806
StatePublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes
Event1993 Scalable Parallel Libraries Conference, SPLC 1993 - Mississippi State, United States
Duration: Oct 6 1993Oct 8 1993

Publication series

NameProceedings of Scalable Parallel Libraries Conference, SPLC 1993


Conference1993 Scalable Parallel Libraries Conference, SPLC 1993
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityMississippi State

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Software
  • Computational Mathematics


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