School of Computing

Jan 22
15:00 - 16:00
PLAS: Laurence Tratt ( with Edd Barrett, King's College
PLAS Group Seminar
Why aren't more users more happy with our VMs?

Programming language Virtual Machines (VM)s are now widely used, from server applications to web browsers. Published benchmarks regularly show that VMs can optimise programs to the same degree as, and often substantially better than, traditional static compilers.

Yet, there are still people who are unhappy with the VMs they use. Frequently their programs don't run anywhere near as fast as benchmarks suggest; sometimes their programs even run slower than more naive language implementations. Often our reaction is to tell such users that their programs are "wrong" and that they should fix them.

This talk takes a detailed look at VM performance, based on a lengthy experiment: we not only uncovered unexpected patterns of behaviour, but found that VMs perform poorly far more often than previously thought. I will draw on some of my own experiences to suggest how we may have gotten into such a pickle. Finally, I will offer some suggestions as to how we might be able to make more VM users more happy in the future.

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Cornwallis South West,
University of Kent,
United Kingdom


Contact: O.Chitil
School of Computing

School of Computing, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NF

Enquiries: +44 (0)1227 824180 or contact us.

Last Updated: 14/08/2015