Ochoa, Claudio and Puebla Sánchez, Alvaro Germán and Hermenegildo, Manuel V.
Removing superfluous versions in polyvariant specialization of prolog programs..
In: "15th International Symposium, LOPSTR 2005", September 7-9, 2005, London, UK. ISBN 978-3-540-32654-0.
Polyvariant specialization allows generating múltiple versions of a procedure, which can then be separately optimized for different uses. Since allowing a high degree of polyvariance often results in more optimized code, polyvariant specializers, such as most partial evaluators,
can genérate a large number of versions. This can produce unnecessarily large residual programs. Also, large programs can be slower due to cache miss effects. A possible solution to this problem is to introduce a minimization
step which identifies sets of equivalent versions, and replace all occurrences of such versions by a single one. In this work we present a unifying view of the problem of superfluous polyvariance. It includes both partial deduction and abstract múltiple specialization. As regards
partial deduction, we extend existing approaches in several ways. First, previous work has dealt with puré logic programs and a very limited class of builtins. Herein we propose an extensión to traditional characteristic trees which can be used in the presence of calis to external
predicates. This includes all builtins, librarles, other user modules, etc. Second, we propose the possibility of collapsing versions which are not strictly equivalent. This allows trading time for space and can be useful in the context of embedded and pervasive systems. This is done by residualizing certain computations for external predicates which would otherwise be performed at specialization time. Third, we provide an experimental evaluation of the potential gains achievable using minimization which leads to interesting conclusions.