A Scenario-Aware Data Flow Model for Combined Long-Run Average and Worst-Case Performance Analysis

Data flow models are used for specifying and analysing signal processing and streaming applications. However, traditional data flow models are either not capable of expressing the dynamic aspects of modern streaming applications or they do not support relevant analysis techniques. The dynamism in modern streaming applications often originates from different modes of operation (scenarios) in which data production and consumption rates and/or execution times may differ. This paper introduces a scenario-aware generalisation of the Synchronous Data Flow model, which uses a stochastic approach to model the order in which scenarios occur. The formally defined operational semantics of a Scenario-Aware Data Flow model implies a Markov chain, which can be analysed for both long-run average and worst-case performance metrics using existing exhaustive or simulation-based techniques. The potential of Scenario-Aware Data Flow models for performance analysis of modern streaming applications is illustrated with an MPEG-2 decoder example.