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Revision 107 - (download) (annotate)
Thu May 28 21:30:17 1998 UTC (21 years, 1 month ago) by monnier
File size: 7113 byte(s)
This commit was generated by cvs2svn to compensate for changes in r106,
which included commits to RCS files with non-trunk default branches.
<!-- ../doc/mldoc/sync-var.mldoc -->

<!DOCTYPE ML-DOC SYSTEM>

<COPYRIGHT OWNER="Bell Labs, Lucent Technologies" YEAR=1998>
<COPYRIGHT OWNER="AT&AMP;T Bell Laboratories" YEAR=1995>
<VERSION VERID="1.0" YEAR=1995 MONTH=11 DAY=16>
<TITLE>The SyncVar structure</TITLE>

<INTERFACE>
<HEAD>The <CD/SyncVar/ structure</HEAD>
<SEEALSO>
  <STRREF TOPID/CML/
</SEEALSO>

<PP>
The <STRREF TOPID NOLINK/SyncVar/ structure provides <BF/Id/-style
synchronous variables (or memory cells).
These variables have two states: <IT/empty/ and <IT/full/.
An attempt to read a value from an empty variable blocks the calling
thread until there is a value available.
An attempt to put a value into a variable that is full results in the
<EXNREF STRID="SyncVar"/Put/ exception being raised.
There are two kinds of synchronous variables: I-variables are write-once,
while M-variables are mutable.

<STRUCTURE STRID="SyncVar">
  <SIGBODY SIGID="SYNC_VAR" FILE=SYNC-VAR-SIG>
    <SPEC>
      <EXN>Put
      <COMMENT>
	<PP>
	This exception is raised when an attempt is made to put a
	value into a value that is already full (see <VALREF/iPut/ and
	<VALREF/mPut/).
    <SPEC>
      <TYPE><TYPARAM>'a<ID>ivar
      <COMMENT>
	<PP>
	This is the type constructor for I-structured variables.
	I-structured variables are write-once variables that provide
	synchronization on read operations.
	They are especially useful for one-shot communications, such
	as reply messages in client/server protocols.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>iVar<TY>unit -> 'a ivar
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          iVar ()
          </PROTOTY>
          creates a new empty I-variable.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>iPut<TY>('a ivar * 'a) -> unit
	<RAISES><EXNREF/Put/
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          iPut (<ARG/iv/, <ARG/x/)
          </PROTOTY>
	  fills the I-variable <ARG/iv/ with the value <ARG/x/.
	  Any threads that are blocked on <ARG/iv/ will be resumed.
	  If <ARG/iv/ already has a value in it, then the <EXNREF/Put/
	  exception is raised.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>iGet<TY>'a ivar -> 'a
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          iGet <ARG/iv/
          </PROTOTY>
          returns the contents of the I-variable <ARG/iv/.
	  If the variable is empty, then the calling thread blocks until
	  the variable becomes full.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>iGetEvt<TY>'a ivar -> 'a event
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          iGetEvt <ARG/iv/
          </PROTOTY>
          returns an event-value that represents the <VALREF/iGet/
	  operation on <ARG/iv/.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>iGetPoll<TY>'a ivar -> 'a option
        <COMMENT>
	<PP>
	  This is a non-blocking version of <VALREF/iGet/.
	  If the corresponding blocking form would block, then it returns
	  <CONREF DOCUMENT=SML-BASIS-DOC STRID="Option"/NONE/; otherwise
	  it returns <CONREF DOCUMENT=SML-BASIS-DOC STRID="Option"/SOME/
	  of the variable's contents.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>sameIVar<TY>('a ivar * 'a ivar) -> bool
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          sameIVar (<ARG/iv1/, <ARG/iv2/)
          </PROTOTY>
          returns <CD/true/, if the <ARG/iv1/ and <ARG/iv2/ are the
	  same I-variable.
    <SPEC>
      <TYPE><TYPARAM>'a<ID>mvar
      <COMMENT>
	<PP>
	This is the type constructor for M-structured variables.
	Unlike <TYREF/ivar/ values, M-structured variables may be
	updated multiple times.
	Like I-variables, however, they may only be written if they
	are empty.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>mVar<TY>unit -> 'a mvar
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          mVar ()
          </PROTOTY>
          creates a new empty M-variable.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>mVarInit<TY>'a -> 'a mvar
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          mVar x
          </PROTOTY>
          creates a new M-variable initialized to <ARG/x/.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>mPut<TY>('a mvar * 'a) -> unit
	<RAISES><EXNREF/Put/
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          mPut (<ARG/mv/, <ARG/x/)
          </PROTOTY>
	  fills the M-variable <ARG/mv/ with the value <ARG/x/.
	  Any threads that are blocked on <ARG/mv/ will be resumed.
	  If <ARG/mv/ already has a value in it, then the <EXNREF/Put/
	  exception is raised.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>mTake<TY>'a mvar -> 'a
      <COMMENT>
        <PROTOTY>
          mTake <ARG/mv/
        </PROTOTY>
	removes and returns the contents of the M-variable <ARG/mv/
	making it empty.
	If the variable is already empty, then the calling thread
	is blocked until a value is available.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>mTakeEvt<TY>'a mvar -> 'a event
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          mTakeEvt <ARG/mv/
          </PROTOTY>
          returns an event-value that represents the <VALREF/mTake/
	  operation on <ARG/mv/.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>mGet<TY>'a mvar -> 'a
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          mGet <ARG/mv/
          </PROTOTY>
          returns the contents of the M-variable <ARG/mv/ without emptying
	  the variable; if the variable is empty, then the thread blocks until
	  a value is available.
	  It is equivalent to the code:
	  <CODE>
let val x = <VALREF/mTake/ <ARG/mv/ in <VALREF/mPut/(<ARG/mv/, x); x end
	  </CODE>
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>mGetEvt<TY>'a mvar -> 'a event
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          mGetEvt <ARG/mv/
          </PROTOTY>
          returns an event-value that represents the <VALREF/mGet/
	  operation on <ARG/mv/.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>mTakePoll<TY>'a mvar -> 'a option
      <VAL>mGetPoll<TY>'a mvar -> 'a option
        <COMMENT>
	<PP>
	  These are non-blocking versions of <VALREF/mTake/ and
	  <VALREF/mGet/ (respectively).
	  If the corresponding blocking form would block, then they return
	  <CONREF DOCUMENT=SML-BASIS-DOC STRID="Option"/NONE/; otherwise
	  they return <CONREF DOCUMENT=SML-BASIS-DOC STRID="Option"/SOME/
	  of the variable's contents.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>mSwap<TY>('a mvar * 'a) -> 'a
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          mSwap (<ARG/mv/, <ARG/newV/)
          </PROTOTY>
	  puts the value <ARG/newV/ into the M-variable <ARG/mv/ and returns
	  the previous contents.
	  If the variable is empty, then the thread blocks until
	  a value is available.
	  It is equivalent to the code:
	  <CODE>
let val x = <VALREF/mTake/ <ARG/mv/ in <VALREF/mPut/(<ARG/mv/, <ARG/newV/); x end
	  </CODE>
	  except that <CD/mSwap/ is executed atomically.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>mSwapEvt<TY>('a mvar * 'a) -> 'a event
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          mSwapEvt <ARG/mv/
          </PROTOTY>
          returns an event-value that represents the <VALREF/mSwap/
	  operation on <ARG/mv/ and <ARG/newV/.
    <SPEC>
      <VAL>sameMVar<TY>('a mvar * 'a mvar) -> bool
        <COMMENT>
          <PROTOTY>
          sameMVar (<ARG/mv1/, <ARG/mv2/)
          </PROTOTY>
          returns <CD/true/, if <ARG/mv1/ and <ARG/mv2/ are the same
	  M-variable.
  </SIGBODY>
</STRUCTURE>
<PP>
I-variables provide a useful mechanism for implementing the
reply communication in request/reply protocols.
They may also be used to implement incremental data structures
and streams.
<PP>
A disciplined use of M-variables can provide an atomic
read-modify-write operation.
</INTERFACE>

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