At the software visualization conference VISSOFT, we presented a tool for tracing memory access patterns of arbitrary applications at runtime and then doing post-mortem visual analysis. The purpose of this visualization is to help developers finding hints for optimization of their code regarding memory usage. This is important for many applications in the area of high-performance computing, especially because the gap between processor and memory speeds continues to grow. Thus, memory accesses pose a bottleneck for performance-critical applications.
Have you ever felt lost in a foreign city? Software engineers know that feeling when they navigate through unfamiliar code. It might sound like a trivial problem, but studies have shown that they spend about 25% of their time just on code navigation. We – a group of researchers from the University of Stuttgart Visualization Research Center (VISUS) – have developed signposts for software engineers. Just like real signpost, ours intend to guide software developers through the code, providing data to make informed decisions where to turn next.