The speculation package

[Tags: bsd3, library]

A framework for safe, programmable, speculative parallelism, loosely based on:

This package provides speculative function application and speculative folds. Speculative STM transactions take the place of the transactional rollback machinery from the paper.

For example:

spec g f a evaluates f g while forcing a, if g == a then f g is returned, otherwise f a is evaluated and returned. Furthermore, if the argument has already been evaluated, we skip the f g computation entirely. If a good guess at the value of a is available, this is one way to induce parallelism in an otherwise sequential task. However, if the guess isn't available more cheaply than the actual answer, then this saves no work and if the guess is wrong, you risk evaluating the function twice. Under high load, since 'f g' is computed via the spark queue, the speculation will be skipped and you will obtain the same answer as 'f $! a'.

The best-case timeline looks like:

 foreground: [----- a -----]
 foreground:               [-]    (check g == a)
 spark:         [----- f g -----]
 overall:    [--- spec g f a ---]

The worst-case timeline looks like:

 foreground: [----- a -----]
 foreground:               [-]               (check g == a)
 foreground:                 [---- f a ----]
 spark:         [----- f g -----]
 overall:    [-------- spec g f a ---------]

Note that, if f g takes longer than a to compute, in the HEAD release of GHC, f g will be collected and killed during garbage collection.

 foreground: [----- a -----]
 foreground:               [-]               (check g == a)
 foreground:                 [---- f a ----]
 spark:         [---- f g ----######         (#'s mark when this spark is collectable)
 overall:    [--------- spec g f a --------]

Under high load:

 foreground: [----- a -----]
 foreground:               [-]               (check g == a)
 foreground:                 [---- f a ----]
 overall:    [-------- spec g f a ---------]

Compare these to the timeline of f $! a:

 foreground: [----- a -----]
 foreground:               [---- f a ----]
 orverall:   [---------- f $! a ---------]

specSTM provides a similar time table for STM actions, but also rolls back side-effects. The one unfortunate operational distinction is that it is forced to compute a in the background thread and therefore degrades slightly less gracefully under load, although we mitigate this effect by only enqueuing if the number of sparks for the current capability is lower than the total number of capabilities, to try to avoid wasting time when all computational resources are in use.


Versions0.0.0, 0.0.1, 0.0.2, 0.1.0, 0.2.0, 0.3.0, 0.4.0, 0.5.0, 0.5.1, 0.6.0, 0.7.0, 0.8.0,,,,,,,,,,, 1.3, 1.4, 1.4.1,,, 1.5,,
Change logCHANGELOG.markdown
Dependenciesbase (>=4.3 && <6), ghc-prim, stm (>=2.1 && <2.5), transformers (>= && <0.5)
Copyright(c) 2010-2015 Edward A. Kmett
AuthorEdward A. Kmett
MaintainerEdward A. Kmett <>
Home page
Bug tracker
Source repositoryhead: git clone -b master
UploadedSun Mar 8 10:50:56 UTC 2015 by EdwardKmett
DistributionsLTSHaskell:, NixOS:, Stackage:
Downloads4143 total (188 in last 30 days)
StatusDocs available [build log]
Last success reported on 2015-03-08 [all 1 reports]




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