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...simplifies development and execution of parallel applications...

Digital Equipment Corporation recently announced the introduction of DEC Fortran 90 V1.3 and the Digital Parallel Software Environment V1.0, the component products that make up Digital's High Performance Fortran (HPF). Developed to meet the needs of scientific and technical users who must manipulate large arrays of data, the new products are specifically designed to allow optimum use of parallel and clustered computing resources. Both are available for Digital's Alpha platforms running Digital UNIX.

"Our scientific and technical customers are looking for ways to do more sophisticated and complete design and analysis at lower cost," said Don Harbert, vice president of Digital's UNIX Business Unit. "Symmetric multiprocessing and clusters have brought supercomputing system costs down by a factor of ten. Now we're providing the tools these customers need to reduce software development time and effort."

The DEC Fortran 90 V1.3 compiler is the first compiler to date to support both the ANSI/ISO Fortran 90 standards and the full de facto HPF specification.

It includes functionality allowing users to write a single parallel program that can execute on both distributed-memory and shared memory machines. HPF eliminates the complex, error-prone task of explicitly telling the compiler how, where, and when to pass messages between processors on distributed-memory machines, or when to synchronize processors on shared-memory machines.

The Digital Parallel Software Environment V1.0 provides key pieces of the software development and execution environment for parallel HPF applications. It includes program development tools like a debugger and profiler, as well as underpinnings like optimized message passing and parallel system management tools.

"HPF is the premiere high-level language for parallel programming today," said Jonathan Harris, project leader for the compiler. "Digital's HPF compiler lets programmers use the parallel programming features of HPF with powerful features of Fortran 90 like modules and user-defined types. Digital HPF programs are capable of showing performance equivalent to hand-written explicit-message passing code. Add to that the ability to execute a single program on a distributed-memory cluster, a single SMP machine, or a cluster of SMP machines. No other HPF implementation in the world can come close to these capabilities."

"Digital has been known as the standard setter for Fortran for years," said Harbert. "This latest software is leading the way into 21st century computing for the scientist, engineer, and numerical analyst."

DEC Fortran 90 is available now and is priced from $1750. The Digital Parallel Software Environment is also available today, and is priced from $50 per node.

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