RE: 90/10 rule... source?

Quinn Tyler Jackson <>
12 Jan 2004 11:56:23 -0500

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From: Quinn Tyler Jackson <>
Newsgroups: comp.compilers
Date: 12 Jan 2004 11:56:23 -0500
Organization: Compilers Central
References: 04-01-046
Keywords: practice, parse
Posted-Date: 12 Jan 2004 11:56:23 EST


> I've wondered if there are any other* parser generators out there that can
> profile at the production level.
> * I say "other" because Meta-S does this.


> [I think I've seen a profiling version of yacc, but it was a long time
> ago. Unless a compiler does a great deal of analysis and
> optimization, the lexer is usually the part of the program that eats
> up the most time. I don't ever recall a parser that took much of the
> overall runtime. -John]

I added profiling into Meta-S because the adaptive(k) algorithm used
to match an $-grammar against input can make the grammar behave
somewhat like a "program", and certain productions can be optimized if
one knows they are the productions that take the most cycles to accept
or fail to accept input. I haven't done any studies on whether or not
the 90/10 rule applies to sophisticated grammars, though.

It might be interesting to run the C++, Perl, and C# grammars (that
is, the "larger" grammars) against test input and determine if the
grammars tend to spend most of their time in so few of the rules.

Quinn Tyler Jackson

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