DUNE Numerics

Protokol of the Dune Developer Meeting 2010

Comment: Stuff marked as comment was added after the meeting and is thus no official representation of the dune developer’s opinion

Dune User Meeting 2010 results

See the discussion results on the Dune User Meeting 2010 site.

  • reduce dependencies on external tools
    There should be fewer dependencies on tools like WML
    • all WML related stuff should be moved to dune-web
  • packages
    the ultimate goal is to have dune packages available for all major distributions
    • for the time being, providing packages should be done by the community, not the developers
    • if someone has the time, he could take a look at automated package creation and deployment tools (like launchpad)
    • if someone has the money, he should hire a student to create dune packages
  • buildsystem
    The buildsystem is good as it is at the moment
    • there shall be no major changes, until someone comes up with really good ideas and manpower
    • the buildsystem could be simplyfied, if one removes either the option to use dune with make install (which is needed for package buildilg) or the option to use dune without make install
  • bug tracking
    • there should be a wiki page containing all information that should be provided when filing bugs, so people can be directed there on first requests
  • feature list
    • there should be feature lists, that are developed in the wiki by users and developers (like the Grid-Manager_Features comparison), that are moved to the official doxygen documentation, once they are finished
  • deprecated warnings
    • the deprecated macro from dune-fem should be moved to dune-common (possibility to have messages like “is replaced by…“)
  • mailinglist
    • there will be a new mailinglist that is only intended for people interested in developement
    • the currrent mailinglist will become a support mailinglist
  • incremental grid tests
    • there should be incremental tests in the dune-grid-dev-howto
  • paralellisation
    • there should be more information concerning thread safety in the doxygen documentation
    • there will be no efforts towards OpenMP, user input is welcome
    • there will be no efforts towards computation on GPUs, user input is welcome

Votes on new developers, access rights, permissions

  • Carsten Gräser is granted developer status (no votes against)
  • for further information on organisational topics, see below

Performance issues


What has been discussed under the name EntityKey shall be implemented and named

  • EntitySeed

    • default constructor returns EntityPointer
    • method on the Entity to get an EntitySeed:

      EntitySeed< Codim, GridImp > Entity.seed()
    • method on the grid to get an entity:

      Grid.entityPointer< Codim >( seed )
    • exported types:

    • Grid

    • Entity

    • codim

Copy vs. Reference

A benchmark by Martin Nolte shows an overhead reduction from 40 to 20 percent (see here and here)

  • from the next release on, there shall be a gradual transition towards returning objects instead of references
  • in the long run, there shall be refcount for the LeafIndexSet
  • from the next release on, there shall be a MatrixInterface
    • the MatrixInterface shall provide all const methods of the DenseMatrix, without operator[]
    • Jacobian, etc. shall be replaced my MatrixInterface (no votes against)

Semantics of method contains()

The method shall return undefined if the entity in question is not an element of the grid

Interface Cleanup


  • from the next release on, there shall be only GenericReferenceElement
  • from the after next release on, GenericReferenceElement shall be deprecated, moved to ReferenceElement
  • from the release after the after next release on, there shall only be ReferenceElement

GeometryType vs. topologyId

Both shall be merged into GeometryType

  • method id() shall return the topologyId
  • method basicType() shall be extended to return not presentable

methods on reference element

  • initializeTopology() shall be protected
  • initialize() shall be protected
  • checkInside( const FieldVector< ctype, dim-codim > &local, int i ) shall be deprecated
  • all global() shall be deprecated

Interface extensions

Facilitate implementation/testing of new features

  • there shall be a define EXPERIMENTAL_GRID_EXTENSIONS to test experimental grid extensions, i.e. to make getRealImpl() public
    Comment: we should perhaps call this one DUNE_GRID_EXPERIMENTAL_EXTENSIONS, to be consistent with the other define (Felix Albrecht)
  • these flags have to be documented
  • these flags have to be removed in a release

subIndex interfac

subIndex(), subEntity() and count() shall be implemented for higher codimensions

Persistent container

shall be moved to grid/utilities/


There shall be a new class BackupRestoreFacility

  • it has to ensure functionality only if restore is applied to the same number of nodes
  • backup:

    static void backup( const Grid& grid, const std::string& path, const std::string& fileprefix )
    static void backup( const Grid& grid, std::ostream& stream )
  • restore:

    has to ensure, that IndexSet and IdSet are the same after restore

    static Grid* restore( const std::string& path, const std::string& fileprefix )
    static Grid* restore( const std::istream& stream )


  • naming will not change
  • decision on VertexOrdering and Twist is postponed
  • Jö Falke shall move his stuff to dune-localfunctions
  • new stuff shall be called FiniteElement
  • GlobalValuedFiniteElement shall be changed
  • there shall be an example documentation for FaceOrientation
  • geometry information shall be provided via an interface similar to Dune::Geometry
  • in the long run, there shall only be one variant of the old finite elements

GridFactory interface

Problems with boundary projection and load balancing/checkpointing

  • Oliver Sander shall think of a prototype for a Domain as a basis for discussion
  • parameterisation of insertBoundarySegment() shall be removed
  • the file reader shall have the possibility to obtain the Domain
  • changes should only be possible until createGrid()

ParameterTree interface for the GridFactory

The constructor shall be removed (Jö Falke)

Parallel grid creation

Will be undertaken, when the above is done (Problems with boundary projection and load balancing/checkpointing)

Flyspray tasks

841: Remove dependency to WML

  • all WML related stuff shall be moved to dune-web (Christian Engwer)
  • WML checks shall be removed (Christian Engwer)

830: Use svn tags for bugfix releases

  • tags, releases, branches shall correspond to the svn standard in the future
  • there shall be a new branch branch/release-2.1
  • the releases subdirectory shall be moved after the next release (Oliver Sander)

827: rbegin of FieldVector and ISTL classes has surprising semantics

  • the methods rbegin(), rend() shall be deprecated
  • a possible name for these methods shall be beforeBegin(), beforeEnd() (Markus Blatt)

819: Remove enum FieldVector::size

  • size() should always be a method (Carsten Gräser)
    • ::size shall be deprecated
    • there shall be a define DUNE_COMMON_RELEASE_COMPATIBILITY to enable the old behaviour

818: Topological embedding and indices of subentities are missing

  • resolved by subIndex() (Carsten Gräser)

801: Int2Type vs. integral_constant

  • Int2Type shall be moved to dune-fem (Robert Klöfkorn)
  • Int2Type shall be deprecated in the other modules (Jorrit Fahlke)
  • change to integral_constant in the core modules (Jorrit Fahlke)

general discussion about new features in the standard

  • the oldest compiler in the list of supported compilers has to be supported
  • the list of supported compilers shall contain approximately the releases of supported compilers of the last four years (including possible exceptions, ie. exotic architectures that are known to work only with an older compiler)
  • the list of supported compilers shall be updated on every dune developer meeting
  • the list of supported compilers shall look like the following from the next release
    • gcc 4.1 and newer
    • icc 10.0 and newer
  • if all supported compilers implement a certain feature from the standard, this should be used
  • if there is a supported compiler that does not implement a feature from the standard yet this feature shall be reimplemented using CamelCase

791: Unify interface class LevelIterator and LeafIterator

  • method lbegin() shall be deprecated
  • {Level,Leaf,Hirarchic}Iterator shall be moved/merged into EntityIterator (Christian Engwer, Martin Nolte?)

766: Separate GenericGeometries and the SmallObjectPool

  • there shall be a char pointer in the geometries, the allocator shall be removed (Carsten Gräser)

746 / 661: Extract ‘function from expression’ functionality from dgf parser

  • if there will be a good implementation, it shall be moved to dune-common (Carsten Gräser, Felix Albrecht)
  • this shall be removed from the dgf parser in the future

743: Add a way to determine whether a grid is hybrid

  • hasSingleGeometryType shall be a capability (Robert Klöfkorn)
  • there shall be a documentation: only implemented for codim 0!
  • if there is only one type, this shall be exported as GeometryType (topologyId of the codim 0 entity)

699: A general dynamic parameter interface for grids

  • see discussion about GridFactory

670: Remove obscure “DUNE developer mode”

  • the functionality shall always be provided
  • --enable-dunedevel shall be removed

532: Entity<0>::count should have a dynamic codim argument

  • no change

515: Move method ‘contains’ from IndexSet to GridView

  • method contains() shall be implemented on grid views as well
    • PartitionType shall be a parameter (like begin(), end())
  • shall be implemented for all codims, which the GridView has

GridFamilyTraits to restrictive

  • shall be extended by a type LocalGeometry (dimGrid -> dimGrid)
  • Oliver Sander shall present a proposal



  • should be used in the future
  • there should be a certain window of time after a branch is completed to test it, before it is merged into the trunk
  • there should be communication before a merge
  • there shall be a documentation on the homepage (on Developing Dune) (Robert Klöfkorn)
  • naming convention for branches: develop-rREVISION-DESCRIPTION, where DESCRIPTION must be nonempty and should be meaningfull
  • a branch is removed after the merge by whoever created it

developer status

  • developer meetings shall be once a year
  • small meetings are possible whenever wished
  • discussions shall take place using the discussion tag in the FlySpray
  • there shall be the following states, which should be mentioned on the homepage including a list of people, according to their status including their active time
    • Developer: those who are allowed to vote on developer meetings (former Core Developer)
    • Alumni: those that did contribute in the past, but have resigned
    • Contributor: the rest

Make discretization modules core modules

  • the intention of the official homepage shall be to promote the dune modules of the developer group, not only the core modules
  • the discretization modules shall be presented more aggressively, the intention of dune (to solve pdes) shall be made clearer
  • the presented modules shall be
    • dune-pdelab
    • dune-fem
    • dune-grid-glue
    • dune-subgrid
    • dune-spgrid (if Martin Nolte agrees)
    • dune-prismgrid (if Freiburg agrees)
    • dune-common
    • dune-grid
    • dune-istl
    • dune-localfunctions
  • all the other modules shall be listed as external modules with their corresponding dependencies
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