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Partial Evaluation for Constraint-Based Program Analyses

Summary: Partial Evaluation for
Constraint-Based Program Analyses
Torben Amtoft
March 1, 2000
We report on a case study in the application of partial evaluation, ini-
tiated by the desire to speed up a constraint-based algorithm for control-
flow analysis. We designed and implemented a dedicated partial evaluator,
able to specialize the analysis wrt. a given constraint graph and thus re-
move the interpretive overhead, and measured it with Feeley's Scheme
benchmarks. Even though the gain turned out to be rather limited, our
investigation yielded valuable feed back in that it provided a better under-
standing of the analysis, leading us to (re)invent an incremental version.
We believe this phenomenon to be a quite frequent spinoff from using par-
tial evaluation, since the removal of interpretive overhead makes the flow
of control more explicit and hence pinpoints sources of inefficiency. Fi-
nally, we observed that partial evaluation in our case yields such regular,
low-level specialized programs that it begs for runtime code generation.
1 Introduction
Offline partial evaluation benefits much from static program analysis [5, 9],


Source: Amtoft, Torben - Department of Computing and Information Sciences, Kansas State University


Collections: Computer Technologies and Information Sciences