Dr. J. Van Sckalkwyk (external)
Tue, 17 Jan 1995 08:19:01 SAT
> The basic unit of "stuff" in the system is the cell. A cell can be
> thought of as a "black box", with a number of unidirectional inputs and
> outputs. A cell's output depends solely on its inputs. (In other words,
> cells can't hold any data inside them. This might be an arguable point,
> but its just the way I was thinking of it.)
I'm fairly happy with this. The good bit is that you mayn't have to
duplicate cells if multiply invoked by other processes.
> Internally, cells are composed of a group of primitive cells
> (support provided by the language), as well as any found useful in other
> cell libraries.
A question. Is the Russian doll structure necessary? i.e. just
because your basic unit on this level is the cell, why not consider
the possibility of having other constructs at lower levels?
> I'd imagine that a number of people are already griping about how
> such a system could possibly go fast enough.
This is not necessarily a problem at all. Optimisation is usually
best applied to small critical portions of code. Provide we do not
slavishly apply homogeneous constructs at all levels, the system will
> To find the proper way to distribute cells over the availible
> [sic] processors, AI or Genetic Algorithms could be used to "learn"
> or "evolve" the best possible speed (or a close approximation ..
Yes. Remembering that requirements may change rapidly and
dramatically, and we do not want to spend too much time deciding what
to do next!
> The other point people will be complaining about is how to represent
> current-style programs in this new system, as it will probably take
> people longer to think up a good distributed algorithm than a sequential
Are the two approaches necessarily mutually exclusive?