IDF Debuts Parallel Web Apps for 2013 Share your comment!


Parallel applications will extend their reach to the world wide web in 2013, according to Renée James, senior vice president and general manager of the Software and Services Group at the recent  Intel Developer Forum . They key element will be HTML5–the latest version of the hypertext markup language–plus parallel extensions to the Javascript language. 

Today software developers are being forced to concentrate on applications with the most market reach, rather than delivering innovative new solutions, according to James. However, with the help of parallel toolkits and cross-platform languages like HTML5 and a Javascript, James predicted a new era of “transparent computing.”

“Consumers and businesses are challenged with the multitude of wonderful, yet incompatible devices and environments available today,” said James. “With transparent computing, software developers no longer must choose one environment over another in order to maintain profitability and continue to innovate.”

James described the coming era of transparent computing where interoperability will enable software developers to deliver robust innovative solutions that nevertheless run on multiple devices and operating systems. As a result of new open-source software development environments with integrated parallel toolkits, Intel’s multi-core processors will be able to deliver the same robust user experience on multiple platforms.

New Tools, Security 

To fulfill the dream, Intel announced parallel tools for its Intel Developer Zone where software developers will also have access to programming communities and other resources. James also described a companion HTML5 Developer Zone which will focus exclusively on cross-platform applications for Apple iOS, Google Android, Microsoft Windows and the open-source Tizen operating system.

Intel’s James reiterated support for HTML5 and Javascript for cross-platform development of parallel programs by describing its collaborative efforts with Mozilla to develop a native implementation of the River Trail technology that enables data-parallelism in web applications. The parallel toolkit for HTML5-based web applications using Javascript is based on a plug-in today that will become a native part of Firefox-based browsers in 2013. Programmers can preview it today as an interactive River Trail shell.

The goal of Intel’s River Trail project is to enable data-parallelism in web applications with a new programming model based on the familiar JavaScript programming paradigm. River Trail extends JavaScript with simple deterministic data-parallel constructs which are translated at runtime into a low-level hardware abstraction layer. Multiple cores and vector instruction units can be accessed using River Trail to achieve significant speedup over today’s sequential JavaScript thereby bringing the parallel processing paradigm to the web.

Also at IDF, Intel also described how its cross-platform tools will dove-tail with new security solutions provided by its McAfee subsidiary which already offers interoperable security solutions via its McAfee Security Innovation Alliance (SIA). Its new McAfee Anti-Theft software was described by McAfee Co-President Michael DeCesare as leveraging Intel’s hardware security features to protect consumers property and information on the coming legion of Ultrabook systems due out in 2013. Intel announced that 40 Ultrabooks were in the works, many touch-enabled with a built-in tablet-like display, from Asus, Dell, Lenovo, Panasonic, Sony and Toshiba.

Intel EVP and Chief Product Officer David Perlmutter also announced a new line of low-power Intel Core processors including 4th generation Haswell processors due in 2013. Also Intel chief technology officer, Justin Rattner described the future of wireless computing including his ‘radio free Intel’ vision. 

Posted on September 18, 2012 by R. Colin Johnson, Geeknet Contributing Editor