Bringing scalable parallel software to the masses

This proposal has been rejected.


One Line Summary

Despite more than 20 years of active research and development, a lot of scalable synchronization remains inaccessible to many students, engineers and open-source projects. Why? And what has been done so far?


Despite more than 20 years of active research and development, non-blocking technologies remain inaccessible to many students, engineers and open-source projects. This is especially true in the context of an unmanaged language such as C despite its popularity in highly complex concurrent systems. Even in light of attractive performance properties, small to medium-sized corporations are extremely hesitant in adopting patent-free technology due to the technology lock-down associated with the various interfaces of existing concurrency libraries. To top it off, when introducing engineers to this area, many are overwhelmed by the literature and the sparsity of performance data.

This talk will walk the audience through the story of the struggles Samy and his peers have faced in the last couple of years in developing sufficient working knowledge to (efficiently) leverage existing non-blocking data structures as well as design, implement and verify new algorithms for use by mission-critical systems. It will highlight the holes faced in existing open-source projects tackling the concurrency problem for the C programming language and the literature associated with much of existing technology. The culmination of frustrations lead to the development of Concurrency Kit, an open-source library designed to aid in the design and implementation of high performance concurrent systems. This presentation is current to 2017 and surveys a wide variety of open-source technology.


multicore, concurrency


  • Sbahra-s

    Samy Bahra



    Samy Al Bahra is the cofounder of Backtrace, where he is helping build a modern debugging platform for today’s complex applications. Prior to Backtrace, Samy was a principal engineer at AppNexus, where he played a lead role in the architecture and development of many mission-critical components of the ecosystem. His work at AppNexus was instrumental in scaling the system to 18 billion impressions with orders of magnitude in efficiency improvements. Prior to AppNexus, Samy was behind major performance improvements to the core technology at Message Systems. At the George Washington University High Performance Computing Laboratory, Samy worked on the UPC programming language, heterogeneous computing, and multicore synchronization. Samy is also the founder of the Concurrency Kit project, which several leading technology companies rely on for scalability and performance. Samy serves on the ACM Queue Editorial Board.