Concurrency is a necessity for many applications but unfortunately makes designing and understanding programs difficult. In response, numerous linguistic models have arisen that define what a concurrent program is and how such components interact. In this talk, I will present the dataspace model of actors, which seeks to improve the ability to share information among groups of isolated, actor-style entities.
Concurrency models, such as dataspace actors, primarily address the run-time organization of programs. This run-time organization arises from a static description, i.e. the composition of some forms provided by a language or library. For this purpose, the dataspace model includes a domain-specific language (DSL) for programming actors. This language of facets allows directly articulating the primary programming concerns of dataspace actors: maintaining local state, sharing information with other actors, and engaging/disengaging in behaviours.
Developing communicating programs, such as dataspace actors, requires designing and implementing protocols. Type systems are a natural tool for assisting programmers in this task. To this end, a typed dialect of the facet language can help programmers check their programs against their protocols. By using techniques from behavioural type systems, communication properties for actors written using this typed language may be specified in temporal logic and then verified using a model checker.
Sam Caldwell is a PhD student at Northeastern University in Boston. Before starting his PhD, he was a computer engineer and worked for a smart light startup. He is interested in designing programming languages and tools for
building comprehensible concurrent systems.
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