A five step process for optimization

This post introduces a five step process for optimizations. The key to this process is to understand that step 4 (the technical work) is the most expensive, risky and time-consuming part. Therefore this process is designed to minimize the amount of time wasted in that step by avoiding optimizing the wrong things or spending unnecessary effort optimizing beyond the target.
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Three tips for successful optimization projects

To ensure a successful optimization project, here are three vital things that you might not have thought about before. Good information Worst case focus Project planning Let's look at these briefly before we return to them later in more detail.
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Optimization... Is it right for you?

"So, the software isn't fast enough...what next?" While the temptation to "dive in" and have a go at optimization can sometimes be very strong, a bit of planning, preparation and understanding what you are aiming for can provide far better results.
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Understanding the value of WCET optimisation within high-integrity real-time software

High-integrity software is typically thought of as being carefully constructed according to rigorous development procedures that primarily ensure its functional correctness. One casualty of this process can be run-time performance but, given the relatively small number of units being produced, the run-time performance can be addressed by over-specifying the hardware.
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Cache Memory: the hardware acceleration feature that can slow you down

Most processors now use caches to reduce the average time to access memory. What do you need to know about the possible pitfalls of using caches?
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