Vats, Islands, and Collections: Finding cheap parallelism

Matthew Fulmer tapplek at
Fri Jan 25 04:42:21 UTC 2008

On Thu, Jan 24, 2008 at 05:02:02PM -0800, Patrick Logan wrote:
> > I'm going to be working on making squeak multi-core as part of
> > my grad work. I have a bit of work to do before I get to the
> > stage where I actually have to implement a parallel code model,
> > but I am thinking about it in the abstract as a mental exercise
> > for now. I will most likely use the vats/islands system used by
> > SqueakELib and Croquet, as it has been validated.
> >
> > But I have a pressing concern: How could this be used to do what
> > seems (to me and my mentors) to be the cheapest, simplest, most
> > obvious parallelism extraction ever: get Collection>>do:,
> > collect:, etc. to run one element per native thread (= vat =
> > island).
> One thing these questions point out is, what do you want all these
> cores to be used *for*?

My mentor's prefered demo app is a ray-tracer.
Computatation-intensive floating stuff. Scientific applications,
image processing, and all that.

And maybe a tricksy renderer for Morphic 3 :)

Matthew Fulmer --
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