North Carolina State University
This paper revisits the fundamental concept of the locality of references and proposes to quantify it as a conditional probability: in an address stream, given the condition that an address is accessed, how likely the same address (temporal locality) or an address within its neighborhood (spatial locality) will be accessed in the near future. Based on this definition, spatial locality is a function of two parameters, the neighborhood size and the scope of near future, and can be visualized with a 3D mesh. Temporal locality becomes a special case of spatial locality with the neighborhood size being zero byte. Previous works on locality analysis use stack/reuse distances to compute distance histograms as a measure of temporal locality.