RenderScript is the heterogeneous compute API in the Android SDK that nobody uses. VSCO's imaging pipeline on Android is almost pure RS and has been for over 3 years. It's been robust at scale, across the all of the peculiar devices in the wild. Features include: a sane high-level Java API, strong guarantees of correctness across devices, and a nice conceptual boundary between the computation (which you do), and the execution strategy (which they do). We discuss options for compute on Android, why RS is a great choice for processing photos and camera frames, it's limitations, and some guidelines for when a problem should be considered "Hella-Parallel", meriting some extra work to accelerate the computation. As an application developer (and not really an imaging person), I found RenderScript to be an accessible intro to parallel compute, and I want to encourage everyone to try it.
Software Engineer at VSCO in Oakland. I do imaging and video for VSCO on Android. I became an embedded parallel compute specialist by accident. Java, C++, RenderScript, GLES for work, Racket and Haskell for funsies.