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The CRPC's Jack Dongarra, in conjunction with Marc Snir, Steve Otto, Steven Huss-Lederman, and David Walker, has recently completed a book on the Message Passing Interface (MPI) standard, entitled MPI: The Complete Reference. Dongarra, a distinguished professor at the University of Tennessee, and distinguished scientist of Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has been closely involved with the MPI project from its inception in 1992.

MPI is a standardized message-passing system designed by a group of researchers from academia and industry that is portable on a wide variety of parallel computers. More than 80 people from 40 organizations have been involved in the development of the standard, which defines the syntax and semantics of a core of library routines useful to a wide range of users writing portable message-passing programs in Fortran 77 or C. Several well-tested and efficient implementations of MPI already exist, including some that are free and in the public domain. These implementations are beginning to foster the development of a parallel software industry, and there is excitement among computing researchers and vendors that the development of portable, scalable large-scale parallel applications is now feasible.

MPI: The Complete Reference is an annotated reference manual for MPI, presenting a complete specification of the standard. Annotations explain why certain design choices were made, how users should use the interface, and how MPI implementors should construct a version of MPI. Detailed, illustrative programming examples are also given to highlight the more advanced or subtle features of MPI.

Published by MIT Press, this 336-page book will be released in paperback in December 1995. It is also available in postscript and html forms over the Internet. For html, access http://www.netlib.org/utk/papers/mpi-book/mpi-book.html. To retrieve the postscript file, use ftp, rcp, or email as described below:

  • ftp ftp.netlib.org
    cd utk/papers/mpi-book
    get mpi-book.ps
  • rcp anon@anonrcp.netlib.org:utk/papers/mpi-book/mpi-book.ps mpi-book.ps
  • Send email to netlib@netlib.org and in the message type: send mpi-book.ps from utk/papers/mpi-book

To order hardcopies directly from the publisher, contact The MIT Press at the Book Order Department, 55 Hayward Street, Cambridge, MA 02142; call 800-356-0343 or 617-625-8569; or send email to mitpress-orders@mit.edu . For more information, contact Gita Manaktala at the University of Tennessee, manak@mit.edu .

Note: MPI: The Complete Reference will be available for review at the CRPC exhibit booth during SUPERCOMPUTING '95, December 3-8, at the San Diego Convention Center.

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