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Appendix A

Figure 12: An Example of a HINT QUIPS Graph

The HINT performance metric was developed at Ames Laboratory to gauge the overall performance of a given machine. It fixes neither the problem size nor the execution time of the problem to be solved; it measures the performance of a computer at all levels of memory. Figure 12 shows a HINT graph for a typical workstation and a small parallel supercomputer. The graph plots the QUality Improvement Per Second (QUIPS) versus the log of the time it took to obtain a answer of given quality. The use of the log of time weights smaller times more heavily. A workstation starts quickly and thus has a higher initial QUIPS. The supercomputer, on the other hand, does not reach its peak QUIPS value until much later due to communication overhead. In general, the area under the QUIPS graph is the net performance and is summarized in a single number called the Net QUIPS. A more complete discussion of HINT can be found in [1] or on the HINT homepage at

Quinn Snell
Fri Apr 5 12:14:32 CST 1996