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Title: Models of higher-order, type-safe, distributed computation over autonomous persistent object stores
Author: Mira da Silva, Miguel Leitão Bignolas
Awarding Body: University of Glasgow
Current Institution: University of Glasgow
Date of Award: 1996
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A remote procedure call (RPC) mechanism permits the calling of procedures in another address space. RPC is a simple but highly effective mechanism for interprocess communication and enjoys nowadays a great popularity as a tool for building distributed applications. This popularity is partly a result of their overall simplicity but also partly a consequence of more than 20 years of research in transpaxent distribution that have failed to deliver systems that meet the expectations of real-world application programmers. During the same 20 years, persistent systems have proved their suitability for building complex database applications by seamlessly integrating features traditionally found in database management systems into the programming language itself. Some research. effort has been invested on distributed persistent systems, but the outcomes commonly suffer from the same problems found with transparent distribution. In this thesis I claim that a higher-order persistent RPC is useful for building distributed persistent applications. The proposed mechanism is: realistic in the sense that it uses current technology and tolerates partial failures; understandable by application programmers; and general to support the development of many classes of distributed persistent applications. In order to demonstrate the validity of these claims, I propose and have implemented three models for distributed higher-order computation over autonomous persistent stores. Each model has successively exposed new problems which have then been overcome by the next model. Together, the three models provide a general yet simple higher-order persistent RPC that is able to operate in realistic environments with partial failures. The real strength of this thesis is the demonstration of realism and simplicity. A higherorder persistent RPC was not only implemented but also used by programmers without experience of programming distributed applications. Furthermore, a distributed persistent application has been built using these models which would not have been feasible with a traditional (non-persistent) programming language.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science