Tutorial 4: CORBA/HPC


Dennis Gannon, Kate Ksiazek, University of Indiana

The Common Object Request Broker Architecture (CORBA), as defined by the Object Management Group (OMG), is a new standard for distributed object systems. CORBA is a very general and powerful tool for building distributed applications. Not only does it provide a foundation for a new generation of desktop software such as the proposed Opendoc standard, it also holds great promise as an infrastructure for high performance distributed computing. In particular, a key concept in the CORBA design is inter-operability. This is achieved by using Interface Definition Language (IDL) to separate the implementation of an object from the specification of its interface. In addition, the CORBA design provides a wide variety of ways for client programs to learn about and contact server objects that are registered with a network object request broker and the associated repositories.

This tutorial will focus on using CORBA in scientific and technical applications in a distributed environment. The tutorial will be from an application programmer's perspective, using examples to illustrate the ways in which CORBA can be used. A background in C++ programming will be assumed.


Dennis Gannon is a professor of computer science at Indian University in Bloomington, Indiana. He received his Ph.D in mathematics from the University of California-Davis in 1976 and a Ph.D in computer science from the University of Illinois in 1980. His research is in the area of programming techniques and tools for parallel and distributed systems.

Kate Ksiazek is a Ph.D candidate in computer science at Indiana University. Her research area is in the design and application of CORBA-based technology for massively parallel computer systems.