Software Productivity and Sustainability

a track presented at

Argonne Training Program on Extreme-Scale Computing

on 9:30am - 5:45pm CDT Thursday 12 August 2021

Presenters: David E. Bernholdt (Oak Ridge National Laboratory), Anshu Dubey (Argonne National Laboratory), Rinku K. Gupta (Argonne National Laboratory), and David M. Rogers (Oak Ridge National Laboratory)

This page provides detailed information specific to the tutorial event above. Expect updates to this page up to, and perhaps shortly after, the date of the tutorial. Pages for other tutorial events can be accessed from the main page of this site.

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The BSSw tutorial focuses on issues of developer productivity, software sustainability, and reproducibility in scientific research software, particularly targeting high-performance computers.


Time (CDT)ModuleTitlePresenter
9:30 AM0Introduction and Setup David E. Bernholdt (ORNL)
9:40 AM1Motivation and Overview of Best Practices in HPC Software Development David E. Bernholdt (ORNL)
10:00 AM2Agile Methodologies Rinku K. Gupta (ANL)
10:30 AM3Git Workflows Rinku K. Gupta (ANL)
11:00 AMBreak
11:15 AM4Scientific Software Design Anshu Dubey (ANL)
11:45 AM5Improving Reproducibility Through Better Software Practices David E. Bernholdt (ORNL)
12:30 PM6Agile Methodologies Redux Rinku K. Gupta (ANL)
12:45 PMLunch
1:45 PM7Software Testing Introduction David M. Rogers (ORNL)
2:05 PM8Testing Walkthrough David M. Rogers (ORNL)
2:15 PM9Testing Complex Software David M. Rogers (ORNL)
2:35 PM10Continuous Integration David M. Rogers (ORNL)
3:00 PMBreak
3:15 PM11Refactoring Scientific Software Anshu Dubey (ANL)
4:15 PM12Summary David E. Bernholdt (ORNL)
4:30 PMQ&A
4:45 PMAdjourn

Presentation Slides

The latest version of the slides will always be available at

Note that these files may include additional slides that will not be discussed during the tutorial, but questions are welcome.

How to Participate

Hands-On Exercises

In this tutorial, we will not have time set aside to work through the hands-on activities, but you are encouraged to pursue them on your own. We’ll watch the repository for issues and pull requests, and the mailing list for other questions, and provide feedback as we can.


The hands-on exercises for this track are based around a simple numerical model using the one-dimensional heat equation. The example is described briefly in the repository’s README file, and in greater detail in the ATPESC Hands-On lesson. The ATPESC version focuses on the numerical aspects of the model. But for this track, we’re focused on how to make the software better from a quality perspective, so you don’t need to understand the math to do these exercises.

For the purposes of these hands-on exercises, you should imagine you’ve inherited an early version of the hello-numerical-world software from a colleague who’s left the project, and you’ve been assigned to get it into better shape so that it can be used in the next ATPESC summer school.

The repository you’ll be working with is on GitHub: bssw-tutorial/hello-numerical-world-2021-08-12-atpesc. Note: most of the screenshots will refer to the generic “hello-numerical-world” repository rather than the one specifically for this tutorial.

List of Hands-On Exercises

Note that the exercise numbers align with the presentation modules. Not every module has exercises (yet).

Stay in Touch

Resources from Presentations

Links from the tutorial presentations are listed here for convenience

Requested Citation

The requested citation the overall tutorial is:

David E. Bernholdt, Anshu Dubey, Rinku K. Gupta, and David M. Rogers, Software Productivity and Sustainability track, in Argonne Training Program on Extreme-Scale Computing, online, 2021. DOI: 10.6084/m9.figshare.15130590.

Individual modules may be cited as Speaker, Module Title, in Software Productivity and Sustainability track…


This tutorial is produced by the IDEAS Productivity project.

This work was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science, Office of Advanced Scientific Computing Research (ASCR), and by the Exascale Computing Project (17-SC-20-SC), a collaborative effort of the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science and the National Nuclear Security Administration.