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2008

Overcoming Software Fragility with Interacting Feedback Loops and Reversible Phase Transitions

8 years 4 months ago
Overcoming Software Fragility with Interacting Feedback Loops and Reversible Phase Transitions
Programs are fragile for many reasons, including software errors, partial failures, and network problems. One way to make software more robust is to design it from the start as a set of interacting feedback loops. Studying and using feedback loops is an old idea that dates back at least to Norbert Wiener's work on Cybernetics. Up to now almost all work in this area has focused on how to optimize single feedback loops. We show that it is important to design software with multiple interacting feedback loops. We present examples taken from both biology and software to substantiate this. We are realizing these ideas in the SELFMAN project: extending structured overlay networks (a generalization of peer-to-peer networks) for large-scale distributed applications. Structured overlay networks are a good example of systems designed with interacting feedback loops. Using ideas from physics, we postulate that these systems can potentially handle extremely hostile environments. If the system...
Peter Van Roy
Added 29 Oct 2010
Updated 29 Oct 2010
Type Conference
Year 2008
Where BCS
Authors Peter Van Roy
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