RapidMind, JetBrains speeds up parallel programming

RapidMind and JetBrains are, respectively, boosting products for parallel programming and Java, with RapidMind adding standards support and JetBrains emphasizing SQL capabilities.

RapidMind said Monday it is using and contributing to both the LLVM (Low Level Virtual Machine) Compiler Infrastructure project and the OpenCL (Computing Language) standard. Through these projects, RapidMind said it can simplify parallel programming for developers while reducing the investment required to maintain code generation technology. Previously, RapidMind had dedicated resources to development and maintenance of low-level device-specific drivers within the RapidMind platform, the company said.

The company’s proprietary code generation technology will take advantage of LLVM to leverage the existing LLVM code base and allow quicker support for new architectures.

RapidMind, which offers its RapidMind Multicore Development Platform, plans to continue its focus on offering an application-oriented runtime, enabling software organizations to take advantage of multicore processors.

RapidMind enables users to exploit multicore CPUs, GPUs, and the Cell Broadband Engine without having to learn new languages or understand the underlying hardware architecture.

LLVM features open-source libraries and tools to provide a hardware-independent interface to generate code for a variety of processors. LLVM and OpenCL are two of the initiatives RapidMind will support to encourage growth of a software ecosystem around newly emerging processors.

“As part of our investment in integrating LLVM into the RapidMind platform, we have already contributed a number of improvements back to LLVM and will continue to do so in the future,” said Dr. Michael McCool, RapidMind chief scientist, in a statement released by the company.

OpenCL, while still early in its evolution, could help create a more consistent, device-level interface to GPU capabilities, RapidMind said.

RapidMind stressed a need for a development and runtime platform for parallel computing. “The disruption caused by the introduction of multicore processors, heterogeneous processors, and the increasing adoption of accelerators has created chaos in the software industry and has hindered innovation,” said Ray DePaul, RapidMind president and CEO, in a statement released by RapidMind.

JetBrains last week introduced version 8 of its Java IDE, IntelliJ Idea, which also serves as the base for two standalone Ruby and Python IDEs planned for release by JetBrains in coming months.

Version 8 offers enterprise, Web and client-server programmers out-of-the-box functionality for SQL queries. RESTful Web services is featured as are UML-like class diagrams for visually studying code structure. Support for the Seam framework for Java is included as are debuggers for JavaScript and Flex. Extended support is offered for Spring frameworks, including Spring 2.5, Spring Web Flow, Spring MVC, and Spring Dynamic Modules.

Key features of version 8 include:

— SQL support, allowing for editing of database scripts and running queries in the IDE with a range of coding assistance for SQL dialects

— Core Java features, such as new factorings, code inspections, and tools to work with unit tests. “Smarter” code completion also is offered.

— Performance boosts, including reduced startup times, faster project builds, and version control updates

— Improved Maven support for repository browser and archetypes support — Backing for the FreeMarker and Velocity template languages, with coding assistance in embedded HTML and CSS code

— Struts 2 and GWT 1.5 frameworks backing

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