Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Parallel Programming with OmniThreadLibrary - the book is here!

My first book Parallel Programming with OmniThreadLibrary is finally out!

The book covers OmniThreadLibrary version 3.07.5 which was also released today.

As this book was always meant to be documentation for the OmniThreadLibrary, my job doesn't end here. I will update and enhance the e-book whenever OmniThreadLibrary is updated and modified. All owners of the e-book will get these updates for the lifetime of the book.

The printed book will also be updated, but most probably only with major updates to OmniThreadLibrary. There will not be an update for release 3.07.6 (if there will be such release), but most probably there will be a new version of printed book when OmniThreadLibrary 3.08 is released and there most definitely will be one when version 4.0 comes out.

Here are your options at the moment.

1. If you would like to own the ebook, go to LeanPub. You can buy an ebook for $29.99 and package containing ebook + three webinars about the OmniThreadLibrary for $34.99. You can also buy an organizational license which allows you to give as many copies as you want to members of your organization.

2. To buy the hardcover printed book go to Lulu. For the next month the price is reduced from $49.99 to $45.99 as an introductory offer! I'm still deciding the possibility of also releasing a paperback version but I'm not entirely sure about that as paperback binding on Lulu is reportedly not of high quality. A price of the paperback would be about $10 lower than the price of the hardcover (that is the difference in print costs) and if you think that would make a difference for you, leave me a note.

3. To buy both versions (ebook and printed), go to Lulu and buy the printed book first! You will get an email with a link for ebook at reduced price $9.99 (and combo with webinars for $14.99).

All existing owners of the electronic book should have already received an email with notification about the new release. This email also contains a link to a specially reduced printed book for mere $29.99! If you previously bought the ebook but didn't receive the email, let me know!

Before I sign out for today, let me tell you that writing this book was lots of hard work but also a great joy and I could never do it without all the great people who bought the ebook before it was even completed. Thank you!

OmniThreadLibrary 3.07.5

OmniThreadLibrary 3.07.5 has been released. You can get it at GitHub or download the ZIP.

There are only small number of changes in this release.

General improvements

  • Reduced number of times NameThreadForDebugging is called when threadpool is used.

Bug fixes

  • [VyPu] fixed race condition in TOmniCriticalSection.Release which affected code that was using TOmniCriticalSection.LockCount.
  • OtlThreadPool did not respect OTL_DontSetThreadName define.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Data-driven Multithreading

About a week ago, Craig Chapman posted a vlog Lockless Multi-Threading in Delphi where he programmed a lockless communication channel which transfers messages between the main thread and a worker thread (or, actually, between any two threads).

I do like Craig's implementation of a lockless queue. It is small, neat, and working. I also like that he approached multithreading from a communication viewpoint. I do, however, have several issues with how it is integrated into the application. While I whole understand the need for simple demo that viewers can understand, I feel that the Delphi world is full of such examples. That makes it hard for a newcomer to the multithreaded world to find appropriate patterns to copy.

Hence I decided to rewrite Craig's code with different objectives in mind. Instead of speed I focused on flexibility, ease of use and good multithreaded programming patterns. Before I jump into my solution, however, I must articulate the bad programming practices in the Lockless demo. (That is strictly subjective reasoning. Your mileage may vary. It is, alas, a reasoning supported by many many years of writing bad multithreaded code - and not yet enough years of writing good code.)

Saturday, February 03, 2018

Books, wonderful books!

I love reading. I loved it since the (very) young days. As far as I remember, books were my friends.

I also love - as I somewhat surprisingly discovered in my twenties - teaching and writing. I always kept to the short form - blog posts, magazine articles, and so on. Always - until few years ago I somehow decided that documenting OmniThreadLibrary would be best done in a form of a book.