In 1978, Tony Hoare presented communicating sequential processes (CSP) to the world. Systems envisioned by CSP are composed of sequential processes that communicate via message passing. In 1973, Hewitt, Bishop, and Steiger introduced the actor model to the world. Actors, like processes in CSP, are isolated entities that communicate via message passing. In recent years, we’ve seen the actor model gain widespread adoption through technologies like Erlang and Akka.
The reactive model is an evolution of the CSP and actor models that switches the focus to data flows and transformations on those data flows. Like the CSP and actor models, the reactive model exhibits self-similarity at all levels of system architecture; in essence, reactive architectures are fractal. Rob Harrop explores how to exploit this architectural similarity and how to use the concepts of CSP, actors, and reactive as powerful tools for reasoning about your system.
Rob Harrop is CEO at Skipjaq, where he leads a team working on the cutting edge of machine-driven performance optimization. When he’s not thinking about how best to tune the myriad workloads encountered by Skipjaq customers, he’s thinking hard about how to pass the optimization burden on to machines that learn. Rob is well known as a cofounder of SpringSource, the software company behind the wildly successful Spring Framework. At SpringSource, he was a core contributor to the Spring Framework and led the team that built dm Server (now Eclipse Virgo). Prior to SpringSource, Rob was (at the age of 19) cofounder and CTO at Cake Solutions, a boutique consultancy in Manchester, UK. A respected author, speaker, and teacher, Rob writes and talks frequently about large-scale systems, cloud architecture, and functional programming. His published works include the highly popular Spring Framework reference Pro Spring.
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