Emulating digital logic using transputer networks (very high parallelism = simplicity = performance)

  • P. H. Welch
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 258)


Modern VLSI technology has changed the economic rules by which the balance between processing power, memory and communications is decided in computing systems. This will have a profound impact on the design rules for the controlling software. In particular, the criteria for judging efficiency of the algorithms will be somewhat different. This paper explores some of these implications through the development of highly parallel and highly distributable algorithms based on occam and Transputer networks. The major results reported are a new simplicity for software designs, a corresponding ability to reason (formally and informally) about their properties, the reusability of their components and some real performance figures which demonstrate their practicality. Some guidelines to assist in these designs are also given. As a vehicle for discussion, an interactive simulator is developed for checking the functional and timing characteristics of digital logic circuits of arbitrary complexity.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. [AJPO 83]
    Ada Joint Program Office: Ada Language Reference Manual; 1983.Google Scholar
  2. [Cirrus 82]
    Cirrus Computers Ltd.: HI-LO 2 Users Manual; 1982.Google Scholar
  3. [Dowsing 85]
    D. Dowsing: Simulating Hardware Structures in Occam; Software & Microsystems, Vol. 4, No. 4, pp. 77–84; August, 1985.Google Scholar
  4. [Hoare 83]
    C.A.R.Hoare: Communicating Sequential Processes; Prentice-Hall, 1985.Google Scholar
  5. [INMOS 83]
    INMOS Ltd: Occam Programming Language Manual; Prentice-Hall, 1983.Google Scholar
  6. [INMOS 84]
    INMOS Ltd: Transputer Reference Manual; INMOS Ltd., 1000 Aztec West, Almondsbury, Bristol, BS12 4SQ; 1984.Google Scholar
  7. [INMOS 86]
    INMOS Ltd: Occam 2 Programming Language Manual (Preliminary); INMOS Ltd., 1000 Aztec West, Almondsbury, Bristol, BS12 4SQ; 1986.Google Scholar
  8. [May-Shepherd 85]
    D.May and R.Shepherd: Occam and the Transputer; Concurrent Languages in Distributed Systems; North-Holland, 1985.Google Scholar
  9. [Roscoe-Hoare 86]
    A.W.Roscoe and C.A.R.Hoare: The Laws of Occam Programming: Technical Monograph PRG-53, Oxford University Computing Laboratory, Programming research group, 8–11 Keble Road, Oxford OX1 3QD; 1986.Google Scholar
  10. [Tamsley-Dow 82]
    J.Tamsley and P.Dow: A Tutorial Guide to SPICE 2F.1; Department of Computer Science, Edinburgh University; October, 1982.Google Scholar
  11. [Welch 85]
    P.H.Welch: The Effect of New Real-Time Software Engineering Methodologies on Marconi Avionics — Final Report; Royal Society/SERC Industrial Fellowship, reference number B/IF/43; July, 1985.Google Scholar
  12. [Welch 86]
    P.H.Welch: A Structured Technique for Concurrent Systems Design in Ada; Ada: Managing the Transition; Proceedings of the Ada-Europe International Conference, Edinburgh, May 1986, pp. 261–272; Cambridge University Press, 1986.Google Scholar
  13. [Welch 87]
    P.H.Welch: Parallel Processes as Reusable Components; Ada: Components, Libraries and Tools; Proceedings of the Ada-Europe International Conference, Stockholm, May 1987; Cambridge University Press, 1987.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. H. Welch
    • 1
  1. 1.Computing LaboratoryUniversity of Kent at CanterburyEngland

Personalised recommendations