How MIT’s C/C++ extension breaks parallel processing bottlenecks

Earlier this week, MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) department announced word of Milk, a system that speeds up parallel processing of big data sets by as much as three or four times.

If you think this involves learning a whole new programming language, breathe easy. Milk is less a radical departure from existing software development than a refinement of an existing set of C/C++ tools.

All together now

According to the paper authored by the CSAIL team, Milk is a  C/C++ language family extension that addresses the memory bottlenecks plaguing big data applications. Apps that run in parallel end up contending with each other for memory access, so any gains from parallel processing are offset by the time spent waiting for memory.

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