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Attn: Development Editor, Latest Caml Weekly News

From:  Alan Schmitt <alan.schmitt-AT-polytechnique.org>
To:  lwn <lwn-AT-lwn.net>, cwn <cwn-AT-lists.idyll.org>
Subject:  Attn: Development Editor, Latest Caml Weekly News
Date:  Tue, 5 Apr 2011 13:30:57 +0200
Message-ID:  <2BECDA1B-0C5D-4A58-BDF9-62BB3DA38E56@polytechnique.org>
Archive-link:  Article

Hello,

Here is the latest Caml Weekly News, for the week of March 29 to April 05, 2011.

1) llpp v4
2) walking a graph in parallel
3) first class modules: differences in 3.12 vs 3.13?
4) [JOB] post-doc position available at MSR-INRIA in France
5) ocsigen-bundler v0.1.0: Create self-contained Ocsigen server
6) OCaml Meeting 2011, 1 week before end of registration
7) The OCaml interactive toplevel in your Web browser
8) Other Caml News

========================================================================
1) llpp v4
Archive: <https://sympa-roc.inria.fr/wws/arc/caml-list/2011-03/msg0...>
------------------------------------------------------------------------
** malc announced:

New version of llpp (tagged v4) is now released, interested parties are
free to grab it from <http://repo.or.cz/w/llpp.git>

llpp is a graphical less(1) like utility for viewing documents in Adobe
PDF format.

Build instructions: <http://repo.or.cz/w/llpp.git/blob/master:/BUILDING>
Keys to press: <http://repo.or.cz/w/llpp.git/blob/master:/KEYS>
      
========================================================================
2) walking a graph in parallel
Archive: <https://sympa-roc.inria.fr/wws/arc/caml-list/2011-03/msg0...>
------------------------------------------------------------------------
** Alexy Khrabrov asked and Gerd Stolpmann replied:

> I have a giant graph of Twitter data which takes several gigabytes in RAM, 
> as a Hashtbl.  I need to walk it, collecting various statistics, and 
> building equally huge data structures under each node.  Currently I do it 
> all in a single OCaml program, which uses up to 60 GB of RAM and works 
> fine.    However, out of the 8 powerful CPUs the box has, only 1 is used.
> 
> Having seen Joel's tasty bites of ZeroMQ and Thrift and Piqi, I'm thinking 
> of exploring 0MQ as a parallel MPI/Erlang-like way to walk the graph.  I'd 
> move the graph into a server, and walkers would be separate processes.   I 
> only need inter-process communication, IPC, for the box.  I could do 
> threads and inter-thread in 0MQ if OCaml would allow real parallel threads. 
>  
> 
> How would you manage 7 identical worker processes and 1 server, so that in 
> the end, the results of the workers are all reduced together?  What's the 
> best way to set up the server?  Some ideas:

Ocamlnet contains a manager for worker processes called Netplex. Here is
an example how to parallelize a matrix multiplication:

<http://blog.camlcity.org/blog/parallelmm.html>

Communication between processes is here done via SunRPC (well, I'm not
for these hyped new protocols like Thrift).

> -- hold the graph in MongoDB, it allows for parallel queries
> -- keep the graph in an OCaml process, it allows for custom queries; but 
> will 0MQ try to fork and copy it when replying to several workers?  Copying 
> is impossible, too big

If the graph is highly interconnected, you can practically only store it
in RAM (that's what all social network sites do). For read-only access,
I suggest you simply allocate a big block of shared memory, and move the
graph to it. Ocamlnet contains also helpers for this:

<http://projects.camlcity.org/projects/dl/ocamlnet-3.2.1/d...>

Look for init_value. Shared memory can be allocated using shm_open, in

<http://projects.camlcity.org/projects/dl/ocamlnet-3.2.1/d...>

I'm also working on extending Ocamlnet with more shared memory
functionality, but this is only partially available yet (Netmulticore
library).

> Or, is it possible to use a huge chunk of shared memory, to place the 
> read-only graph there and query it somehow separately from each worker, 
> then use 0MQ for the reduce communication phase?

If you need help with this, I can also offer commercial support for
Ocamlnet. (Provided your company is not a search engine, or a social
network, for contractual reasons.)
      
** Richard Jones also replied:

As it's read-only, sounds like an ideal application for ancient:

<http://git.annexia.org/?p=ocaml-ancient.git;a=summary>
      
========================================================================
3) first class modules: differences in 3.12 vs 3.13?
Archive: <https://sympa-roc.inria.fr/wws/arc/caml-list/2011-03/msg0...>
------------------------------------------------------------------------
** Joel Reymont asked, Dmitry Bely said, and Maxence Guesdon replied:

> > I get an error on this with 3.12 but no error with 3.13.0+dev2 
> > (2010-10-22).
> >
> > let _ = Simple.main (module Client) (module Server) (module Config)
> >
> > Why? I thought 3.12 supported first-class modules.
> 
> I believe module types are a must:
> 
> let _ = Simple.main (module Client : CLIENT) (module Server : SERVER)
> (module Config : CONFIG)

In revision 10738, the implicit-unpack branch was merged to the trunk. I
think this allows
  let _ = Simple.main (module Client) (module Server) (module Config)
instead of
  let _ = Simple.main (module Client : CLIENT) (module Server : SERVER)
    (module Config : CONFIG)

and that it explains the difference.
      
========================================================================
4) [JOB] post-doc position available at MSR-INRIA in France
Archive: <https://sympa-roc.inria.fr/wws/arc/caml-list/2011-03/msg0...>
------------------------------------------------------------------------
** Damien Doligez announced:

Research team: Tools for Proofs, MSR-INRIA Joint Centre
=======================================================

The Microsoft Research-INRIA Joint Centre is offering a 2-year
position for a post-doctoral researcher to work on a proof development
environment for TLA+ in the Tools for Proofs project-team (see
<http://www.msr-inria.inria.fr>).

Research Context
================

TLA+ is a language for formal specifications and proofs designed by
Leslie Lamport.  It is based on first-order logic, set theory,
temporal logic, and a module system.  While the specification part of
TLA+ has existed for several years, the proof language is more recent,
and we are developing tools for writing and checking proofs.

TLA+ proofs are interpreted by the Proof Manager (PM), which generates
proof obligations corresponding to individual steps of the TLA+
proof. The PM passes proof obligations to backend provers; currently
these include the tableau prover Zenon and a generic backend for SMT
solvers. When possible, we expect backend provers to produce a
detailed proof that is then checked by an axiomatization of TLA+ in
the trusted proof assistant Isabelle. In this way, we obtain high
assurances of correctness as well as satisfactory automation.

The current version of the PM handles only the "action" part of TLA+:
first-order formulas with primed and unprimed variables; where a
variable v is considered as unrelated to its primed version v'.  This
allows us to translate non-temporal proof obligations to standard
first-order logic, without the overhead associated with an encoding of
temporal logic into first-order logic.  This part of TLA+ is already
useful for proving safety properties.

Description of the activity of the post-doc
===========================================

The post-doctoral researcher will extend the proof manager to handle
the temporal part of TLA+.  In cooperation with the other members of
the project, he or she will contribute to the extension of the TLA+
proof language to temporal operators, and will design and implement a
new translation to Isabelle of the full language. This extension poses
interesting conceptual and practical problems. In particular, the new
translation will have to smoothly extend the existing one in order to
make use of the plain first-order theorems produced by the old
translation, which will be kept for all action-level reasoning.

Skills and profile of the candidate
===================================

The ideal candidate will have a solid knowledge of logic and set
theory as well as good implementation skills related to symbolic
theorem proving. Of particular relevance are parsing and compilation
techniques. Our tools are mainly implemented in OCaml. Experience with
temporal and modal logics, Isabelle, Java or Eclipse would be a plus.

Location
========

The Microsoft Research-INRIA Joint Centre is located on the Campus of
INRIA Saclay, in the South of Paris, near the Le-Guichet RER
station. The Tools for Proofs project-team is composed of Damien
Doligez, Leslie Lamport, and Stephan Merz.

Contact
=======

Candidates should send a resume and the name and e-mail addresses of
one or two references to Damien Doligez 
<damien.doligez AT inria.fr>.
The deadline for application is June 1, 2011.

This announce is available at
<http://www.msr-inria.inria.fr/Members/doligez/post-doc-po...>
      
========================================================================
5) ocsigen-bundler v0.1.0: Create self-contained Ocsigen server
Archive: <https://sympa-roc.inria.fr/wws/arc/caml-list/2011-03/msg0...>
------------------------------------------------------------------------
** Continuing an old thread, yoann padioleau said and Sylvain Le Gall replied:

> I've created something with a similar goal here:
>  <https://github.com/aryx/fork-ocsigen>
>  <https://github.com/aryx/fork-ocsigen/blob/master/pad.txt>
> 
> Basically it's a battery-included gitbug-enabled source distribution
> of ocsigen with arguably cleaner Makefiles
> and directory organization.

I have a quick look at your project, but I don't think it targets
exactly the same goal. 

The point of ocsigen-bundler is to copy every .cma/.cmo/executable into
a target directory to be able to rsync them to a remote host. 

ocsigen-bundler can be seen as the deploy utilities of ocsigen server.
This is how I use it. 

It doesn't include a fork of ocsigen, nor of any libraries not used by the
project you deploy.
      
========================================================================
6) OCaml Meeting 2011, 1 week before end of registration
Archive: <https://sympa-roc.inria.fr/wws/arc/caml-list/2011-03/msg0...>
------------------------------------------------------------------------
** Sylvain Le Gall announced:

== Hacking day ==

There will be hacking day (week-end), the day after the meeting
organized by Pierre Chambart at IRILL.

== OCaml Meeting ==

For the fourth time, I am proud to invite all OCaml enthusiasts to join us at
OCaml Meeting 2011 in Paris.
 
This year event takes place in Paris on Friday 15th April 2011. Registration 
is
opened now and will be closed on Friday 8th April 2011.

As last year, participants are invited to give a talk on what they are doing
with OCaml, submit a description of your talk on the wiki or contact me.

__ Only 30 places left and only one week before remains __ 

We are still looking for:
* someone to handle the camrecorder
* someone to welcome people and direct them to the cafeteria

Both of these tasks will only take you a limited amount of time during the
meeting. It will help the organization team a lot. 

The meeting is sponsored by INRIA CAML Consortium and organized OCamlCore.

Further information: 
<http://bit.ly/eaZi1C>
Registration:
<http://bit.ly/hqaDWb>

Hope to see a lot of you 
Regards 
Sylvain Le Gall on behalf of the OCaml Meeting organization team

p.s. the registration website is made with Ocsigen and connected to the forge,
so you need to be logged in the OCaml Forge to be able to subscribe.
      
========================================================================
7) The OCaml interactive toplevel in your Web browser
Archive: <https://sympa-roc.inria.fr/wws/arc/caml-list/2011-04/msg0...>
------------------------------------------------------------------------
** Jerome Vouillon announced:

You can now try the OCaml toplevel online:

   <http://ocsigen.org/js_of_ocaml/toplevel/>

Your code is executed in the Web browser, not on some remote server.


Technically, the OCaml toplevel and the Js_of_ocaml compiler have been
put together in a single OCaml program, which has then been compiled
to Javascript. The source code is currently available in the darcs
repository of the Js_of_ocaml compiler.

    More information regarding the compiler:
        <http://ocsigen.org/js_of_ocaml/>

    Get the source code:
        darcs get <http://ocsigen.org/darcs/js_of_ocaml/>


Contributions (syntax highlighting, history, ...) are welcome!
      
========================================================================
8) Other Caml News
------------------------------------------------------------------------
** From the ocamlcore planet blog:

Thanks to Alp Mestan, we now include in the Caml Weekly News the links to the
recent posts from the ocamlcore planet blog at <http://planet.ocamlcore.org/>.

OCaml Meeting 2011, hacking day:
  <https://forge.ocamlcore.org/forum/forum.php?forum_id=782>

OCaml Meeting 2011, 1 week before end of registration:
  <https://forge.ocamlcore.org/forum/forum.php?forum_id=781>

OCaml-Couch:
  <https://forge.ocamlcore.org/projects/ocaml-couch/>
      
========================================================================
Old cwn
------------------------------------------------------------------------

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========================================================================

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