Squeezing out more performance

Vitek and I talked about an idea he had to make the exhaustive search in MBA a bit more efficient. Basically, it involves the program being able to remember things it’s tried before, and not bother trying them again if it knows it won’t work. As a result, you can eliminate consideration of lots of sets of constraints right away. While each one wouldn’t have taken long to evaluate, being able to skip over dozens of a time should still be a win.

Actually, the idea was pretty similar to one I had been kicking around before leaving for vacation two weeks ago, but the approach I had had in mind wouldn’t have worked. Vitek’s is the same basic idea, but done in a way that shrinks the search space too aggressively. Early tests suggest it could produce a noticeable speedup in execution time, which is always good, and should work especially well for the nastier data sets.

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