Development of a Prototype Distributed System Based on the Communication Systems Architecture (CSA)
Within the office environment there is a trend towards multi-vendor systems with computing power distributed throughout. By its nature, the information and input/output resources are distributed on different nodes and accessed by many users from a variety of terminals. It is this complex scenario which motivated the project to investigate how such systems can be constructed and managed in a consistent manner. The project was convinced that major benefits could be realised if a consistent platform could be provided to application system irrespective of whether the underlying resources were single system/single vendor or distributed over multi-vendor systems. Our approach was to define an architecture (Communication Systems Architecture) that incorporated a number of strategic interfaces, observing standards where appropriate. An object oriented philosophy was adopted. From this architecture, the project constructed a number of platforms (Local CSA Machines) based on single end systems and moved on to implement a prototype platform based on a number of computing nodes linked by both local and wide-area networks (CSA Domain Machine). This paper outlines the architecture, describes the implementation of a Local CSA System, the design of the CSA Domain Machine and concludes by considering the relevance of the architecture to other environments and in which areas standards may be influenced.
KeywordsProcess Group Local Object Object Type Composite Object Domain Object
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