Towards a Grainless Semantics of Shared-Variable Concurrency

Professor John Reynolds, Carnegie Mellon University and visiting University of Edinburgh

Conventional semantics for shared-variable concurrency suffers from the "grain of time" problem, i.e., the necessity of specifying a default level of atomicity. We propose a semantics that avoids any such choice by regarding all interference that is not controlled by explicit critical regions as catastrophic. It is based on three principles: