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Chaos in computer performance

Hugues Berry 1 Daniel Gracia Pérez 1 Olivier Temam 1
1 ALCHEMY - Architectures, Languages and Compilers to Harness the End of Moore Years
LRI - Laboratoire de Recherche en Informatique, UP11 - Université Paris-Sud - Paris 11, Inria Saclay - Ile de France, CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique : UMR8623
Abstract : Modern computer microprocessors are composed of hundreds of millions of transistors that interact through intricate protocols. Their performance during program execution may be highly variable and present aperiodic oscillations. In this paper, we apply current nonlinear time series analysis techniques to the performances of modern microprocessors during the execution of prototypical programs. Our results present pieces of evidence strongly supporting that the high variability of the performance dynamics during the execution of several programs display low-dimensional deterministic chaos, with sensitivity to initial conditions comparable to textbook models. Taken together, these results show that the instantaneous performances of modern microprocessors constitute a complex (or at least complicated) system and would benefit from analysis with modern tools of nonlinear and complexity science.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, December 14, 2005 - 11:41:42 AM
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Hugues Berry, Daniel Gracia Pérez, Olivier Temam. Chaos in computer performance. Chaos: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Nonlinear Science, American Institute of Physics, 2006, 16 (1), pp.013110. ⟨10.1063/1.2159147⟩. ⟨inria-00000109v2⟩



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