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<p><b>Abstract</b>—New trends in high-performance software development such as tool- and component-based approaches have increased the need for flexible and high-performance communication systems. When trying to reap the well-known benefits of these approaches, the question of what communication infrastructure should be used to link the various components arises. In this context, <it>flexibility</it> and <it>high-performance</it> seem to be incompatible goals. Traditional HPC-style communication libraries, such as MPI, offer good performance, but are not intended for loosely-coupled systems. Object- and metadata-based approaches like XML offer the needed plug-and-play flexibility, but with significantly lower performance. We observe that the flexibility and baseline performance of data exchange systems are strongly determined by their <it>wire formats</it>, or by how they represent data for transmission in heterogeneous environments. After examining the performance implications of using a number of different wire formats, we propose an alternative approach for flexible high-performance data exchange, <it>Native Data Representation</it>, and evaluate its current implementation in the <it>Portable Binary I/O</it> library.</p>
High-performance, distributed computing, communication, wire format.

G. Eisenhauer, F. E. Bustamante and K. Schwan, "Native Data Representation: An Efficient Wire Format for High-Performance Distributed Computing," in IEEE Transactions on Parallel & Distributed Systems, vol. 13, no. , pp. 1234-1246, 2002.
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