A Generic Toolbox for the Grid Craftsman


Universally reusable tools for grid management tasks are scarce. We identify coupling of algorithms to data structures as main obstacle for reuse, and show how to overcome the difficulties by using generic programming. After introducing an abstract kernel of grid functionality, we present some universal generic grid tools based on that kernel which are usable for arbitrary grid data structures. For evaluating the approach, we describe how to leverage these tools in order to set up a framework for hybrid grid generation. Finally, we show how to use generic components with existing grid data structures, and discuss the efficiency of generic grid tools, which is overall quite satisfying. 1 The Grid Craftsman’s Old Tools Computational scientists who are in charge of constructing and processing grids for scientific applications are in need of a vast amount of different support tools. First spring to mind basic tasks, such as reading and writing grids from and to files in different formats, including compressed ones, converting between various grid representations, or calculating additional incidence information. In the grid generation process, one often has to deal with different generation procedures, producing grids which have to be combined afterwards. This calls for methods to find overlapping parts of different grids, to glue grids together or to cut parts off a grid, to efficiently locate points in grids, or to coarsen and refine a grid according to some criterion. Then, the validity of the resulting has to be ensured (looking for self-intersections etc.), its quality has to be monitored and enhanced if necessary. For these tasks, adequate visualization of critical grid parts and their quality measures can be of great help, especially in more involved situations. The list could obviously be continued. We did intentionally not list more domain-specific tasks such as numerical discretizations, which merely work on grids and not with grids, and thus do not properly fit into the toolbox we are concerned with here. However, the approach we are going to present applies to them as well. Given the large number of more-or-less routine tasks which need to be performed by a grid craftsman, one might expect a well established set of standard tools to

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@inproceedings{Berti2001AGT, title={A Generic Toolbox for the Grid Craftsman}, author={Guntram Berti}, year={2001} }