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Section: Scientific Foundations

Formal models for distributed objects

A few years ago, we designed the ASP calculus for modelling distributed objects. It remains to this date one of our major scientific foundations. ASP is a calculus for distributed objects interacting using asynchronous method calls with generalised futures. Those futures naturally come with a transparent and automatic synchronisation called wait-by-necessity. In large-scale systems, our approach provides both a good structure and a strong decoupling between threads, and thus scalability. Our work on ASP provides very generic results on expressiveness and determinism, and the potential of this approach has been further demonstrated by its capacity to cope with advanced issues, such as mobility, group communications, and components [6] .

ASP provides confluence and determinism properties for distributed objects. Such results should allow one to program parallel and distributed applications that behave in a deterministic manner, even if they are distributed over local or wide area networks.

The ASP calculus is a model for the ProActive library. An extension of ASP models distributed asynchronous components. A functional fragment of ASP has been modelled in the Isabelle theorem prover.


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