OpenMP*: The Once and Future API


October 2018 marked the 21st birthday of OpenMP*—an API for writing multithreaded applications that has evolved into a preeminent parallel programming model.

According to Tim Mattson—one of OpenMP’s founders—the reason why is simple. “[OpenMP] is a safe and gentle way to get into parallel computing. Developers can quickly go from Ground Zero to writing parallel algorithms.”

Additionally, as an open standard, OpenMP levels the playing field in a competitive league of hardware vendors (software applications always last longer than any particular hardware product), allowing developers to create portable code that withstands the continuous evolution of hardware revisions.

So where is OpenMP going next? Are there another 21 years in its future? Can it remain relevant in a future where the pace of hardware complexity and heterogeneity goes off the charts?

Tune in to hear Tim discuss these very issues with Tech.Decoded, including his prediction about parallel programming’s future.

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  • OpenMP 5.0 support is available in Intel® oneAPI DPC++/C++ Compiler, Intel® C++ Compiler Classic, and Intel® Fortran Compilers. Get all three in the Intel® oneAPI HPC Toolkit.

Tim Mattson
Senior principal engineer, Intel Corporation

Tim Mattson is a parallel programmer whose 24/7 obsession is science. With Intel since 1993, Tim is a senior principal engineer whose contributions span a brilliant array of globe-changing efforts. These efforts include (and this is the short list) the first TFLOP computer, the OpenMP and OpenCL™ programming languages, Intel’s first TFLOP chip and the 48 core SCC, Polystore data management systems (in collaboration with MIT), and the GraphBLAS API for expressing graph algorithms as sparse linear algebra.

Currently Tim leads a programming systems research group and collaborates with researchers at MIT on the intersection of AI and data systems ( Tim earned a BS in Chemistry degree from the University of California, Riverside, and a MS in Chemistry degree and a PhD in quantum scattering theory from the University of California, Santa Cruz.


Henry A. Gabb, PhD
Senior principal engineer, Intel Corporation

Henry is a senior principal engineer in the Intel Software and Services Group, Developer Products Division, and is the editor of The Parallel Universe, Intel’s quarterly magazine for software innovation. He first joined Intel in 2000 to help drive parallel computing inside and outside the company. He transferred to Intel Labs in 2010 to become the program manager for various research programs in academia, including the Universal Parallel Computing Research Centers at the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Prior to joining Intel, Henry was director of scientific computing at the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center MSRC, a Department of Defense high-performance computing facility. Henry holds a B.S. in biochemistry from Louisiana State University, an M.S. in medical informatics from the Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine, and a PhD in molecular genetics from the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine. He has published extensively in computational life science and high-performance computing. Henry recently rejoined Intel after spending four years working on a second PhD in information science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he established his expertise in applied informatics and machine learning for problems in healthcare and chemical exposure.


Intel® oneAPI HPC Toolkit

Deliver fast C++, Fortran, OpenMP, and MPI applications that scale. Requires the Intel® oneAPI Base Toolkit for full functionality.

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