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Programming as if Performance Mattered

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A little bit of benchmarking and some analysis sheds a bit of light on the subject.
I frequently see bare queries from programmers in discussion forums, especially from new programmers, who are worried about performance. These worries often stem from popular notions about what operations are "slow." Division. Square roots. Mispredicted branches. Cache unfriendly data structures. Visual Basic. Inevitably someone chimes in that making out-of-context assumptions, especially without profiling, is a bad idea. And they're right. But I often wonder if those warnings are also just regurgitations of popular advice. After all, if a C++ programmer was truly concerned with reliability above all else, would he still be using C++?
 read more | mail this link | score:2484 | -Ray, May 7, 2004
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