[Python-Dev] generic async io (was: microthreading vs. async io)

dustin at v.igoro.us dustin at v.igoro.us
Thu Feb 15 20:55:50 CET 2007

On Thu, Feb 15, 2007 at 07:46:59PM +0000, Nick Maclaren wrote:
> dustin at v.igoro.us wrote:
> >
> > I think this discussion would be facilitated by teasing the first
> > bullet-point from the latter two: the first deals with async IO, while
> > the latter two deal with cooperative multitasking.
> > 
> > It's easy to write a single package that does both, but it's much harder
> > to write *two* fairly generic packages with a clean API between them,
> > given the varied platform support for async IO and the varied syntax and
> > structures (continuations vs. microthreads, in my terminology) for
> > multitasking.  Yet I think that division is exactly what's needed.
> The 'threading' approach to asynchronous I/O was found to be a BAD
> IDEA back in the 1970s, was abandoned in favour of separating
> asynchronous I/O from threading, and God alone knows why it was
> reinvented - except that most of the people with prior experience
> had died or retired :-(

Knowing the history of something like this is very helpful, but I'm not
sure what you mean by this first paragraph.  I think I'm most unclear
about the meaning of "The 'threading' approach to asynchronous I/O"?
Its opposite ("separating asynchronous I/O from threading") doesn't
illuminate it much more.  Could you elaborate?


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