- condition_signal(+Handle, +Mode)
- Signal a condition on a handle
- condition_wait(+Handle, +Timeout)
- Wait for a condition to be signaled on a handle
- engine_create(-Engine, ++Options)
- Create a new ECLiPSe engine
- engine_join(+Engine, +Timeout, -Status)
- Wait for an engine to stop running, and return its status
- engine_post(+Engine, +EventGoal)
- Post an event goal to an engine
- engine_resume(+Engine, ?Term, -Status)
- Resume execution of an engine
- engine_resume_thread(+Engine, ?Term)
- Asynchronously resume execution of an engine
- Get a handle of the engine executing the call
- get_engine_property(+Engine, +Name, -Value)
- Obtain properties of an engine, including current status
- with_mutex(++Handle, +Goal)
- Equivalent to once(Goal) but with mutual exclusion
- yield(+ToParent, -FromParent)
- Stop the running engine in the yielded-state, and wait for resume
An 'engine' is an entity with independent control flow and data areas. This implies:
On the other hand, engines share or can share the following:
Engines can be created, instructed to execute ECLiPSe code, and their status and results queried. The programming paradigm is that of an engine as a co-routine, which is either running or stopped. An engine is set running using a resume-operation, and will then run until it comes to a stop (which can be for several reasons, and is encoded in the engine status).
?- engine_create(E, ), engine_resume(E, writeln(hello), Status). hello E = $&(engine,"376oe7") Status = true Yes (0.00s cpu)Here, an engine E is created, and set running (resumed) with a goal to execute. When the engine terminates, the engine_resume/3 returns with a status code. Since the goal succeeded, the status is 'true'.
A more interesting case is where the engine executes a nondeterministic goal:
?- engine_create(E, ), engine_resume(E, ( member(X,[one,two]), writeln(X) ), S1), writeln(first_resume:S1), engine_resume(E, fail, S2), writeln(second_resume:S2), engine_resume(E, fail, S3), writeln(third_resume:S3). one first_resume : true two second_resume : true third_resume : falseOn the first resume, the engine executes the goal and succeeds with the first solution. At this point, despite returning from the resume, the engine retains all computation state associated with the success of the executed goal. In particular, it can be made to backtrack, and deliver another solution. This is done by resuming with a 'fail'. This second resume returns again with a status of 'true', indicating another solution. The third resume returns 'false', indicating no further solution. The engine is now in the same state as just after creation.
An engine can be resumed in its own thread, which makes it execute concurrently with the resumer:
?- engine_create(E, ), engine_resume_thread(E, writeln(hello)), % do other work here, while engine is running concurrently % ..., engine_join(E, block, Status). hello E = $&(engine,"376oe7") Status = true Yes (0.00s cpu)The only difference from above is that the engine_resume/3 operation is now split into engine_resume_thread/2 and engine_join/3. The engine_resume_thread/2 sets the engine running in its own thread, and returns immediately. The main program can now do work independently of the separately running engine. To re-synchronize, engine_join/3 is called, which, if necessary, will wait for the engine to stop, and report its status.
The backtracking example above works equally well by replacing the engine_resume/3 calls with pairs of engine_resume_thread/2 and engine_join/3.
An engine can be in one of the following states:
The yield/2 built-in is used in combination with resume to synchronize execution and exchange data directly between two engines:
?- engine_create(E, ), engine_resume(E, (yield(hello,In),writeln(received(In))), S1), writeln(S1), engine_resume(E, dear, S2), writeln(S2). yielded(hello) received(dear) true
The next example does the same as findall/3, but using an auxiliary engine:
engine_findall(X, Goal, Xs) :- engine_create(E, ), engine_resume(E, (Goal,yield(X,Cont),Cont), Status), ( fromto(Status,yielded(Sol),Status1,false), foreach(Sol,Xs), param(E) do engine_resume(E, fail, Status1) ).
The next example adds solutions lazily to a list:
lazy_findall(X, Goal, Xs) :- engine_create(E, [thread]), engine_resume_thread(E, (Goal,yield(X,_),fail)), solutions(E, Xs). delay solutions(_,Xs) if var(Xs). solutions(E, Xs) :- engine_join(E, block, Status), ( Status = yielded(X) -> Xs = [X|Xs1], engine_resume_thread(E, fail), solutions(E, Xs1) ; Status = false -> Xs =  ; throw(unexpected_status(Status)) ). ?- lazy_findall(X, member(X,[a,b,c]), Xs), Xs = [A,B|T]. Xs = [a, b|T] A = a B = b T = T Delayed goals: solutions($&(engine,"376oe7"), T) Yes (0.00s cpu)
The flushio and waitio functionality refers to queue-streams, which can be used for communication. These should be set up as follows:
open(queue(""), update, Stream, [yield(on)])This should be done in the main program, and the Stream handle passed as an argument to the goal during resume.
Example for returning data from an engine via a queue:
?- open(queue(""), update, Q, [yield(on)]), engine_create(E, ), engine_resume(E, (write(Q,hello),flush(Q)), Status), ( Status = flushio(Stream) -> read(Stream, Result) ; writeln(unexpected:Status) ). Q = $&(stream,7) E = $&(engine,"376oe7") Status = flushio(7) Result = hello
Example for passing data to engine via a queue:
?- open(queue(""), update, Q, [yield(on)]), engine_create(E, ), engine_resume(E, (read(Q,Term),writeln(received(Term))), Status), ( Status = waitio(Stream) -> write(Stream, hello), engine_resume(E, unused, _) ; writeln(unexpected:Status) ). received(hello) Q = $&(stream,9) E = $&(engine,"376nlr") Status = waitio(9)
Data can be transferred via non-backtrackable storage, i.e. bags, stores, shelves, or records:
?- bag_create(B), engine_create(E, [thread]), engine_resume_thread(E, (between(1,20,1,X),bag_enter(B,X),fail)), engine_join(E, block, Status), bag_retrieve(B, Xs). B = $&(bag,"1hqv") E = $&(engine,"376nlr") Status = false Xs = [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, ...]The anonymous (handle-based) versions of these facilities should be used, as they are more efficient and are disposed of automatically by garbage collection. The use of dynamic predicates and assert/retract is not recommended.
The basic operations on non-backtrackable storage objects (bags, shelves, stores, records) and streams are all atomic, i.e. operations such as
atomic_write_list(Stream, Xs) :- with_mutex(Stream, write_list(Stream, Xs)). write_list(Stream, Xs) :- ( foreach(X,Xs), param(Stream) do writeln(Stream, X) ).Without with_mutex/2, each writeln/2 would be atomic, but another thread that has the same stream handle could write to the stream between these writeln-calls.
Here is an example of how to make a read-modify-write operation on a store thread-safe:
add_to_store(Store, Key, Increment) :- with_mutex(Store, ( store_get(Store, Key, OldVal), NewVal is OldVal+Increment, store_set(Store, Key, OldVal) )).A couple of common atomic operations have been introduced as new primitives:
The following predicates cause a the calling engine-thread to block until a particular continuation condition arises:
The synchronized operations record_wait_append/4 and record_wait_remove/3 can be used to implement bounded queues for thread communication. On the receiving side, record_wait_remove/3 waits for entries to appear in the queue. On the sending side, record_wait_append/4 waits for the queue to have space for new entries. Arbitrary terms can be transferred.
produce_consume(N) :- record_create(Q), engine_create(E, ), engine_resume_thread(E, consume(Q)), produce(Q, N). produce(Q, N) :- ( for(I,1,N), param(Q) do writeln(producing(I)), record_wait_append(Q, I, block, 20) ). consume(Q) :- record_wait_remove(Q, Msg, block), writeln(consuming(Msg)), consume(Q).
ECLiPSe's event mechanism can be used to interrupt a running engine and to insert an arbitrary goal into the execution. This is the same mechanism used for timer-controlled after-events and for signal-triggered events.
Use engine_post/2 to post such a goal to a particular engine:
?- engine_create(E, [thread]), engine_resume_thread(E, (repeat,fail)), % run forever sleep(3), engine_post(E, abort), engine_join(E, block, Status). E = $&(engine,"376oe7") Status = exception(abort) Yes (3.00s cpu)