Effective Concurrency: The Power of “In Progress”

This month’s Effective Concurrency column, The Power of “In Progress”, is now live on DDJ’s website.

From the article:

Don’t let a long-running operation take hostages. When some work that takes a long time to complete holds exclusive access to one or more popular shared resources, such as a thread or a mutex that controls access to some popular shared data, it can block other work that needs the same resource. Forcing that other work to wait its turn hurts both throughput and responsiveness.

Let’s look at the question from another angle, suggested by my colleague Terry Crowley: Instead of viewing partially-updated state with in-progress work as an ‘unfortunate’ special case to remember and recover from, what if we simply embrace it as the normal case? …

I hope you enjoy it. Finally, here are links to previous Effective Concurrency columns:

The Pillars of Concurrency (Aug 2007)

How Much Scalability Do You Have or Need? (Sep 2007)

Use Critical Sections (Preferably Locks) to Eliminate Races (Oct 2007)

Apply Critical Sections Consistently (Nov 2007)

Avoid Calling Unknown Code While Inside a Critical Section (Dec 2007)

Use Lock Hierarchies to Avoid Deadlock (Jan 2008)

Break Amdahl’s Law! (Feb 2008)

Going Superlinear (Mar 2008)

Super Linearity and the Bigger Machine (Apr 2008)

Interrupt Politely (May 2008)

Maximize Locality, Minimize Contention (Jun 2008)

Choose Concurrency-Friendly Data Structures (Jul 2008)

The Many Faces of Deadlock (Aug 2008)

Lock-Free Code: A False Sense of Security (Sep 2008)

Writing Lock-Free Code: A Corrected Queue (Oct 2008)

Writing a Generalized Concurrent Queue (Nov 2008)

Understanding Parallel Performance (Dec 2008)

Measuring Parallel Performance: Optimizing a Concurrent Queue (Jan 2009)

volatile vs. volatile (Feb 2009)

Sharing Is the Root of All Contention (Mar 2009)

Use Threads Correctly = Isolation + Asynchronous Messages (Apr 2009)

Use Thread Pools Correctly: Keep Tasks Short and Nonblocking (Apr 2009)

Eliminate False Sharing (May 2009)

Break Up and Interleave Work to Keep Threads Responsive (Jun 2009)

The Power of “In Progress” (Jul 2009)

3 thoughts on “Effective Concurrency: The Power of “In Progress”

  1. It seems so.. the time I have first read this today I turned my attention to this blog also…

Comments are closed.