[plt-scheme] Continuations

From: Noel Welsh (noelwelsh at yahoo.com)
Date: Tue Nov 21 09:42:46 EST 2006

Hi Akhilesh,

I misunderstood the intention of your message.  I agree
with the majority of your points, in the context of where
we'd like to be with the web framework.

--- Akhilesh Mritunjai <mritun.lists at gmail.com> wrote:

> So in my view having two or more different models to
> develop pages in,
> only to change into another in due time is inconvenient -
> at least.


> The primary issue at hand that I see mentioned is
> increased server
> resource utilization, and the point I wanted to convey
> was that
> runtime support for serialization and persistence may
> help alleviate
> that to a significant extent

Agreed.  There are a few systems I know (SISC, Gambit-C)
that support serialisable continuations.  I don't know how
performant they are.  This does show that the
implementations techniques are relatively well understood,
though probably still fiddly to implement.

> The world hasn't moved anywhere[1]! 

I disagree.  Two points:

  - AJAX apps benefit from a very different model to CGI
style apps

  - The opportunity to make a framework successful doesn't
come around that often.  Right now is a good opportunity,
due to AJAX

> Noel, I am not even pitching in for that direction. All I
> can say is I
> don't know what is right or what is wrong - let alone
> what is ideal! I
> have been studying different approaches and the
> continuations based
> approach, right now looks most logical. That's it.

Ok.  This is the main point I misunderstood.  
> Now I also see certain short-comings of this approach and
> I am here to
> discuss whether the approach that I came across -
> serialization and
> persistence in particular, will lead towards a solution.

I think they will solve a number of the problems (but not
bookmarkability, though you can solve this in other ways),
and as I mentioned above the implementation techniques are
relatively well known.  Looking at the Erlang runtime and
the Termite system based on Gambit-C would be good places
to start.

Finally, the main thing I see lacking in existing web
frameworks is a component system.   Ideally we'd compose
pages out of well tested components.  If you're interested
in this area I suggest also reading about functional
component-based systems, or which I know of two main
directions: FRP (here you have Haskell implementations and
Flapjax nee FrTime, with quite different properties, so
look at both), and CSP (Erlang etc.)


Email: noelwelsh <at> yahoo <dot> com   noel <at> untyped <dot> com
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