Sunday, September 20, 2015

Replicated Object. Part 1: Introduction

1 Abstract

The present article explains an early prototype that introduces the concept of replicated object or replob. Such object is a further rethinking how to deal with complexity related to distributed systems development. Replob eliminates the dependency on the external reliable service and incorporates the consistent data manipulation into the user-defined objects representing data and related functionality. The idea is based on using the power of C++ language and object-oriented programming that allows complex logic utilization within distributed transactions and significantly simplifies development of the reliable applications and services. Subsequent articles will explain presented approach in detail step-by-step.

2 Introduction

Disclaimer. Almost all methods specified in the article contain dirty memory hacks and abnormal usage of C++ language. So if you are not tolerant to system and C++ perversions please stop reading this article.

Today, topics related to distributed systems are one of the most interesting and attract many people including developers and computer scientists. The popularity can be explained in a simple manner: we need to create robust fault-tolerant systems that provide safe environment to perform execution of operations and data storing.

Along with that, the consistency of distributed system plays important role. It comes with a price if you want to have stronger notion of consistency level. There are a set of systems provides a weakest form of consistency: so called eventual consistency. While those systems have relatively good performance they cannot be used in many areas where you need to have transactional semantics for your operations. The thing is that it is much simpler to meditate and reason about a system under consideration using one of the strong forms of consistency like strict consistency or linearizability. Due to those consistency levels, it is much easier to develop reliable application with safe semantics of operations.