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Entry  14 Jul 2004, Piotr Zolnierczuk, , future direction discussion? 
    Reply  14 Jul 2004, Piotr Zolnierczuk, , future directions discussion? 
    Reply  14 Jul 2004, Stefan Ritt, , future direction discussion? 
       Reply  15 Jul 2004, Konstantin Olchanski, , future direction discussion? 
Message ID: 27     Entry time: 15 Jul 2004     In reply to: 25
Author: Konstantin Olchanski 
Subject: future direction discussion? 
> > Are we ready for 2.0? 

I disapprove of version number inflation. Why not go straight for midas version

> A big thing along the horizon I see is the ROME environment
> ( So we will move away from PAW to ROOT. Although
> the DAQ part will stay untouched, the whole analysis back-end changes,
> including some XML configuration and MySQL support.

I looked at the ROME slides from Pierre, and it seems to suffer badly from the
second-system syndrome (read The Mythical Man-Month).

For us, it is important to get the data into a form where we can process it with
ROOT and I would prefer if we could concentrate in improving the (embryonic) ROOT
online analysis capabilities.

> > 1) For one I would like to explore memory mapping (mmap())

It is trivial to replace System-V shared memory with mmap(). I am surprised that
it has not been done yet. System-V semaphores are a little bit harder to get rid of.

> > 2) Expanding hardware support: 
> >    a) custom microcontrolers?
> >    b) more hardware
> >    c) how about a "standard" Linux device /dev/midas
> >    for various PCI cards (PCI<->CAMAC) (PCI<->VME) 

We cannot expect MIDAS Authors to provide drivers for all possible hardware.

At best, we can mount an effort to collect exisiting drivers from all MIDAS users
"out there" and to integrate them into MIDAS.

Even that is highly non-trivial- many drivers use non-portable native hardware
access interfaces (direct bit-banging on PPCs, VMIC library on VMIC Linux
machines, etc). We have already failed to create an efficient generic portable VME
access library.

> As for a), there is the MSCB system (

I never saw the point of having tons of MIDAS code for MSCB hardware that nobody
has and nobody will ever have.

> > 3) I have never really seen a midas deployment that uses interrupts. 
> It's not only the "ease" of polling, but also that it's faster (in almost all
> cases) and less troublesome. But hey, interrupt support is included in mfe.c,
> so if you are fanatic about interrupts...

Interrupts are important when one cannot afford chewing up CPU cycles, memory
cycles, PCI cycles and VME cycles on polling.

As I understand, common CAMAC hardware does not generate interrupts- this explains
lack of examples and lack of interrupt use. At TRIUMF, our new VME hardware
supports interrupts and I have a VMIC-based setup where I can (and intend to) test
MIDAS support of interrupts.

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