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Is Morton layout competitive for large two-dimensional arrays?

Thiyagalingam, Jeyarajan and Kelly, Paul H.J. (2002) Is Morton layout competitive for large two-dimensional arrays? In: Monien, B. and Feldman, R., (eds.) Euro-Par 2002: Parallel Processing: 8th International Euro-Par Conference Paderborn, Germany, August 27-30, 2002: proceedings. Lecture notes in computer science (2400). Springer, Berlin, Germany, pp. 280-288. ISBN 3540440496

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Two-dimensional arrays are generally arranged in memory in row-major order or column-major order. Sophisticated programmers, or occasionally sophisticated compilers, match the loop structure to the language's storage layout in order to maximise spatial locality. Unsophisticated programmers do not, and the performance loss is often dramatic -- up to a factor of 20. With knowledge of how the array will be used, it is often possible to choose between the two layouts in order to maximise spatial locality. In this paper we study the Morton storage layout, which has substantial spatial locality whether traversed in row-major or column-major order. We present results from a suite of simple application kernels which show that, on the AMD Athlon and Pentium III, for arrays larger than 256 ×256, Morton array layout, even implemented with a lookup table with no compiler support, is always within 61% of both row-major and column-major -- and is sometimes faster.

Item Type:Book Section
Research Community:University of Westminster > Electronics and Computer Science, School of
ID Code:1498
Deposited On:08 May 2006
Last Modified:19 Oct 2009 16:13

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