Linked by Eugenia Loli on Mon 27th Aug 2001 05:22 UTC
Syllable, AtheOS AtheOS is a modern, free (GPLed) Operating System written from scratch in C++. A big chunk of the OS is POSIX compliant, supports multiprocessing and it is GUI-oriented (fully OOP). Today we are hosting an interesting interview with the AtheOS creator, Kurt Skauen. Kurt is talking about his views on binary compatibility in future versions, multithreading and the future of his OS in general.
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Hi, One can argue that forcing MT threading is helpful or not for performance. I long thouht it was obviously positive. I don't think so anymore. Can MT be good? Sure! But MT doesn't support non-excellent implementation (either you get stability or unpredictable results, or you get poor performance, or both!). JBQ says that MT in the app server slowed it down at first? That's probably a good example. Yes, it can help. But for which application? It is easy if windows are truly independent (no sync needed, no/little sharing of information) like for a media player or Tracker, and will help if several windows have high speed requirement (media player). But if the goal is to display preference panels, simple UI stuff, there there is just no point, and it will get in the way. And this is the case of so many applications. Where MT can be very useful, is when the app has a lot of activity going on. Something like Nuendo. But then, you have a *huge* deal of inter-dependency, with values shown in different ways in different windows at the same time. And there, MT goes in your way if it is not done the way you wish. BeOS forces the way MT is done in you app, and this is the real problem. I want to design my app the way *I* wish depending on *my* needs. Take Nuendo (again). How did I implement it (following the recommendation of Be experts who refused to help in other ways): I killed down BeOS's multithreading by basically forwarding every UI message in my own event loop, and then, I used Nuendo's internal multithreading, which is already pervasive. In the end, I had an app which was amazing. Fast redraws and everything, and no compromise. But with its own private multithreading. JBQ will correct me, but I don't think that any app on BeOS was nearly has "live", fast and powerful as Nuendo. The war is not: MT is good or not. MT can help greatly, but it has to be well done. BeOS forces the way MT is done in your app, and this is really bad. From discussions I have had with other developers who made "big" beos software with multi window UI, this fact alone killed (or delayed so much) so many projects, that it certainly was the reason #1 why so few "great" software appeared for BeOS. -geb, berenger@francenet.fr (please cc by email your answers..)