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Technical note: “Bit by bit”: a practical and general approach for evaluating model computational complexity vs. model performance

Azmi, Elnaz 1; Ehret, Uwe 2; Weijs, Steven V.; Ruddell, Benjamin L.; Perdigão, Rui A. P.
1 Steinbuch Centre for Computing (SCC), Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT)
2 Institut für Wasser und Gewässerentwicklung (IWG), Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT)

One of the main objectives of the scientific enterprise is the development of well-performing yet parsimonious models for all natural phenomena and systems. In the 21st century, scientists usually represent their models, hypotheses, and experimental observations using digital computers. Measuring performance and parsimony of computer models is therefore a key theoretical and practical challenge for 21st century science. “Performance” here refers to a model's ability to reduce predictive uncertainty about an object of interest. “Parsimony” (or complexity) comprises two aspects: descriptive complexity – the size of the model itself which can be measured by the disk space it occupies – and computational complexity – the model's effort to provide output. Descriptive complexity is related to inference quality and generality; computational complexity is often a practical and economic concern for limited computing resources.

In this context, this paper has two distinct but related goals. The first is to propose a practical method of measuring computational complexity by utility software “Strace”, which counts the total number of memory visits while running a model on a computer. ... mehr

Verlagsausgabe §
DOI: 10.5445/IR/1000130229
Veröffentlicht am 04.03.2021
Cover der Publikation
Zugehörige Institution(en) am KIT Institut für Wasser und Gewässerentwicklung (IWG)
Universität Karlsruhe (TH) – Interfakultative Einrichtungen (Interfakultative Einrichtungen)
KIT-Zentrum Klima und Umwelt (ZKU)
Steinbuch Centre for Computing (SCC)
Universität Karlsruhe (TH) – Zentrale Einrichtungen (Zentrale Einrichtungen)
Publikationstyp Zeitschriftenaufsatz
Publikationsjahr 2021
Sprache Englisch
Identifikator ISSN: 1607-7938
KITopen-ID: 1000130229
HGF-Programm 46.21.01 (POF IV, LK 01) Domain-Specific Simulation & SDLs and Research Groups
Erschienen in Hydrology and earth system sciences
Verlag Copernicus Publications
Band 25
Heft 2
Seiten 1103–1115
Vorab online veröffentlicht am 03.03.2021
Nachgewiesen in Dimensions
Web of Science
KIT – Die Forschungsuniversität in der Helmholtz-Gemeinschaft
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