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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • This is something a lot of people don't seem to get -- CPU and disk are all but free in our era of 2GHz+ chips and terabyte drives, but memory (and cache) are a huge bottleneck. The limiting factors in many programs I write (bioinformatics) are memory and sometimes address space, not CPU time or disk space; and my most frequent source of UI irritation is not waiting for the CPU, but waiting for an application that has been paged out. Yet we see man-years devoted to ever-more-complicated CPU schedulers and

    • Yet we see man-years devoted to ever-more-complicated CPU schedulers and file compression algorithms, while language runtimes become increasingly complex and approximate LRU remains the state of the art in virtual memory management.

      I've seen applications where the best possible optimization was to remove a cache and recalculate a modestly cheap value; many modern processors are fast enough that throwing a few extra cycles in the pipeline is more efficient than paying the price of a processor cache miss.