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RE: Workers

From: Justin James <j_james@mindspring.com>
Date: Thu, 10 Jul 2008 00:18:08 -0400
To: "'Ian Hickson'" <ian@hixie.ch>, <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <008701c8e243$f53fe270$dfbfa750$@com>

I have some questions/comments/concerns on this:

1) The HTML 5 spec states that the DOM is not ECMAScript-only, but
acknowledges that no common browser is shipping with, say, Ruby or Lisp as a
client-side scripting system. However, the current draft states that it is
ECMAScript-only. How do we resolve this conflict?

2) No mention of inter-thread communications (such as semaphores) or locking
mechanisms (spin locks, monitor, mutex, etc.). This is critical.

3) I know it's a rough outline of the form that the spec will take, but it
must have mechanisms for the UA to do things like force the breaking of a
deadlock. Without this, it is trivial for a poorly written piece of code to
absolutely cripple the browser quite by accident, and pass testing 99.9999%
of the time.

4) Multithreaded code is *insanely* difficult for the average programmer to
write, debug, and test. If we can't get the typical Web developer to spit
out valid HTML, do we *really* want to enable them to inflict multithreaded
code on their users? Of course, my hope is that few developers will actually
use it, just as threads have been available to desktop app developers for a
long time, but only a small fraction of developers actually use them.

5) Threading is something that should be specified at the language level
nearly all of the time. How/why are we now trying to implement it as part of
the HTML 5 spec? I would think that adding thread support to ECMAScript is
the ECMAScript group's responsibility.

6) I have a sizable amount of experience on the development end of writing
multithreaded applications. What do I need to do to actively participate in
the development of this spec? It's a topic that I am particularly interested
in.

Thanks!

J.Ja

> -----Original Message-----
> From: public-html-request@w3.org [mailto:public-html-request@w3.org] On
> Behalf Of Ian Hickson
> Sent: Wednesday, July 09, 2008 9:30 PM
> To: public-html@w3.org
> Subject: Workers
> 
> 
> 
> Based on popular demand (and threats that without a spec
> implementations
> would proceed regardless) I have started collecting use cases and
> requirements for a specification for background worker scripts
> ("threads")
> in JavaScript:
> 
>    http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-workers/current-work/#requirements
> 
> Any feedback would be greately appreciated, especially from authors
> involved in large Web applications who would make significant use of
> such
> a feature, and from implementors of browsers that may support this.
> 
> --
> Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.
> fL
> http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._
> ,.
> Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-
> .;.'
Received on Thursday, 10 July 2008 04:19:21 GMT

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