Scientific Computing Seminar

Date and Place: Thursdays and hybrid (live in 32-349/online via Zoom). For detailed dates see below!


In the Scientific Computing Seminar we host talks of guests and members of the SciComp team as well as students of mathematics, computer science and engineering. Everybody interested in the topics is welcome.

List of Talks

Event Information:

  • Thu

    SC Seminar: Max Aehle

    11:45Hybrid (Room 32-349 and via Zoom)

    Max Aehle, Chair for Scientific Computing (SciComp), University of Kaiserslautern-Landau (RPTU)

    Title: Reverse-Mode Automatic Differentiation of Compiled Programs


    Algorithmic differentiation (AD) is a set of techniques to obtain accurate derivatives of computer-implemented functions. For gradient-based numerical optimization purposes, the reverse mode of AD is especially suited — the run-time it needs to compute a gradient of the objective function is proportional to the run-time of the objective function, and independent of the number of design parameters.

    In practice, classical AD tools require that the source code of the computer-implemented function is available, in a limited set of programming languages. As a step towards making AD applicable to cross-language or partially closed-source client programs, we developed the new AD tool Derivgrind [1]. Derivgrind leverages the dynamic binary instrumentation framework Valgrind to add forward-mode AD logic to the machine code of compiled computer code.

    In this talk, we present the new index-handling and tape-recording capabilities that we added to Derivgrind during the last months [2]. In combination with a simple tape evaluator program, they enable operator-overloading-style reverse-mode AD for compiled programs.

    [1] Max Aehle, Johannes Blühdorn, Max Sagebaum, Nicolas R. Gauger. Forward-Mode Automatic Differentiation of Compiled Programs. arXiv:2209.01895, 2022.
    [2] Max Aehle, Johannes Blühdorn, Max Sagebaum, Nicolas R. Gauger. Reverse-Mode Automatic Differentiation of Compiled Programs. arXiv:2212.13760, 2022.

    How to join online

    You can join online via Zoom, using the following link: