Abstract: For several years, my group has been investigating multicore systems software, especially for data systems. We built data structures, fast in-memory transactional systems that take advantage of data type semantics, and, through a long and fraught attempt to replicate other results, discovered some interesting scalability problems whose effects are underappreciated. Optimistic concurrency control (OCC) looks good in our tests, even though everyone knows its performance collapses under contention. But I’ll also talk about my troubles with this research, so expect the optimism to have limits. (If time permits, I’ll preview some ongoing work with the scalable commutativity rule for systems software.)
Bio: Eddie Kohler is professor and area chair of computer science at Harvard University and author of many widely-used open-source software packages.
Faculty Host: Tianyin Xu