The High Performance Distributed Computing (HPDC) group studies programming environments for large-scale distributed systems, hand in hand with current technology and real-world applications. Technology has changed over the years from cluster computers, to grids, clouds, edge devices, hybrid systems with many-core accelerators, mobile systems, sensors, and Internet-of-Things. Applications from numerous domains have been addressed over the years, including search algorithms, model checking, multimedia, semantic web, bioinformatics, astronomy, climate modelling, digital forensics, e-health, and machine learning.
The group produced well-known programming environments such as Orca, MagPIe, Ibis, JavaGAT, and WebPIE. Current programming systems include Swan (smartphone-based sensors and Internet-of-Things), MCL/Cashmere (programming heterogeneous many-core systems), and VLog (a high-performance Datalog engine). See the “Our software systems” page for more details.
The group has also coordinated the Distributed ASCI Supercomputer (DAS) project for the past 2 decades. The current system is DAS-6.
The current research of the group is on efficient deep learning, distributed edge systems for machine learning, knowledge abstraction from large web-based data sets, in-network computing, many-core accelerators, distributed sensor applications, and large-scale stream distributed reasoning. The group has many new recent projects, especially on Deep Learning.
Group leader Henri Bal is the author of 3 books (including Modern Compiler Design, 2012) and about 200 published articles. He has been the promotor of over 30 PhD students. He is the winner of the Euro-Par 2014 Achievement Award, Member of the Academia Europeana, the first Honorary Member (since June 2022) of the Advanced School for Computing and Imaging (ASCI), and former member Editorial board of IEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems (TPDS).
Jacopo Urbani is tenured assistant professor in the group and runs a subgroup (KARMA) on Knowledge Acquisition, Reasoning, and Management.
Lin Wang is assistant professor in the group since December 2018; he received a Google Research Scholar Award in April 2022.