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Threads Considered Harmful  

 
 
 

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Tutorial presented at ACCU Conference 2005 in Oxford.
Here are the original description and abstract:

Description

Why multiple threads are almost always a bad choice if alternatives are available

Threads are an interesting technical mechanism for concurrent programming. But in most cases where multiple threads are applied, it's like using a sledge hammer for putting a pin in a pin board: the collateral damage is much worse than the gain.

This talk should make you think twice before using multi-threading.

Abstract

Since the mid-90s, a lot of literature was published to solve problems arising in multi-threaded programs. This led a lot of programmers to the belief that multi-threading is the appropriate solution for a number of common programming problems concerning all kinds of concurrency.

This talk reviews the pros and the cons of using multiple threads and explores some alternative approaches. It presents some mechanisms realized in C++ to solve a lot of design problems that are usually solved using multi-threading. It compares the different approaches and looks behind some of the myths surrounding multiple threads.

 
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