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Generalized Control Block Structure for Common Programming Interface

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000036855D
Original Publication Date: 1989-Nov-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Jan-29
Document File: 2 page(s) / 13K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Kasiraj, C: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

This article describes a control block structure that has generali applicability across a heterogeneous set of applications.

This text was extracted from a PDF file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 53% of the total text.

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Generalized Control Block Structure for Common Programming Interface

This article describes a control block structure that has generali applicability across a heterogeneous set of applications.

The control block provides a common interface which is flexible, extendable, minimizes software maintenance, and greatly extends the portability of applications. The control block structure design philosophy is based on data self- description principles and eliminates the tight-binding that normally exists between the application code and data. By applying these self-description principles, application interfaces can be described that are independent of programming languages, compilers, machine architectures and operating system environments, thereby allowing maximum portability of the application code. Control blocks today tend to be fixed, language and compiler dependent, and sensitive to the architecture of the machine on which they are compiled.

Once defined, the control block is compiled in with the application code and bound to it at compile time. Any changes or extensions that need to be made later require that all applications using the control block be identified and be recompiled. In the past, this has driven the need for data dictionaries and costly program maintenance. The alternative being proposed is for a control block in which all of the elements contained within it are self-describing as to their length and type. The control block then is a collection of these self-described elements. Applications designed to work with these structures would rarely require alterations to existing code due to changes in lengths or data types of t...