• Keynote titled “The three L’s in modern high-performance networking: Low latency, Low cost, Low processing load”, will be given by Torsten Hoefler, ETH Zürich.
  • Panel session: “Industrial perspective of high-speed communication technology evolution”,  moderated by Dr. Young Cho,  University of Southern California


The three L’s in modern high-performance networking: Low latency, Low cost, Low processing load

Torsten Hoefler,  Associate Professor, Scalable Parallel Computing Lab
Computer Science Department, ETH Zürich

Abstract: This talk provides an overview of recent research results in high-performance networking. We discuss the history and design tradeoffs for large-scale topologies following the growing demand for low latency and high throughput at lowest cost. We then introduce a high-performance cost-effective network topology called Slim Fly that approaches the theoretically optimal network diameter. We analyze Slim Fly and compare it to both traditional and state-of-the-art networks. Our analysis shows that Slim Fly has significant advantages over other topologies in latency, bandwidth, resiliency, cost, and power consumption. After solving the topology problem, we focus on the endpoint. Today’s network cards contain rather powerful processors optimized for data movement. However, these devices are limited to fixed functions, such as remote direct memory access. We describe sPIN, a portable programming model to offload simple packet processing functions to the network card. The portable packet-processing network acceleration sPIN model is similar to compute acceleration with CUDA or OpenCL. We demonstrate several use-cases for which network acceleration enables an eco-system that can significantly speed up applications and system services. Both of these recent results will guide design and implementation of future data-center and HPC networks.

Torsten Hoefler is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at ETH Zürich, Switzerland. Before joining ETH, he led the performance modeling and simulation efforts of parallel petascale applications for the NSF-funded Blue Waters project at NCSA/UIUC.  He is also a key member of the Message Passing Interface (MPI) Forum where he chairs the “Collective Operations and Topologies” working group. Torsten won best paper awards at the ACM/IEEE Supercomputing Conference SC10, SC13, SC14, EuroMPI 2013, IPDPS 2015, and other conferences.  He published numerous peer-reviewed scientific conference and journal articles and authored chapters of the MPI-2.2 and MPI-3.0 standards. He received the Latsis award of ETH Zurich as well as an ERC starting grant in 2015. His research interests revolve around the central topic of “Performance-centric System Design” and include scalable networks, parallel programming techniques, and performance modeling.  Additional information about Torsten can be found on his homepage at


Industrial perspective of high-speed communication technology evolution

ModeratorDr. Young Cho, Research Assistant Professor of Computer Science in University of Southern California, Viterbi School of Engineering, and the USC Information Sciences Institute (ISI).