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Blackboard Architectures

Blackboard approaches, such as Schwartz's FLiPSiDE [[Schwartz1995]] or Gelernter's LINDA [[Gelernter1993]], allow multiple processes to communicate by reading and writing tuples from a global data store. Each process can watch for items of interest, perform computations based on the state of the blackboard, and then add partial results or queries that other processes can consider.

Blackboard architectures provide a flexible framework for problem solving by a dynamic community of distributed processes. A blackboard approach provides one solution to eliminating the tightly bound interaction links that some of the other distributed technologies require during interprocess communication. This advantage can also be a disadvantage: although a programmer does not need to refer to a specific process during computation, the framework does not provide programmatic control for doing so in cases where this would be practical.

Adam Cheyer
Mon Oct 19 17:14:26 PDT 1998