CS3CS16-Concurrent Systems

Module Provider: Computer Science
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Pre-requisites: CS2OS16 Operating Systems or SE2OS11 Operating Systems and CS2JA16 Java or SE2JA11 Java and CS2EA16 Essential Algorithms or SE2EA11 Essential Algorithms
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2017/8

Module Convenor: Dr Manju Manjunathaiah

Email: m.manjunathaiah@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:
Concurrent systems are becoming ubiquitous. Multi-core processors, Supercomputers, heterogeneous network of computers or a Web server, although appearing radically different, have an underlying unifying principle of computational processes interacting to achieve an overall computational goal.

The aim of this module is to develop an appreciation of this unifying principle and the benefits of concurrency. General concepts of concurrency are introduced using the calculus of Communicating Sequential Processes (CSP) and its use in the design of concurrent systems is explored through several examples of applications.

Assessable learning outcomes:

Knowledge and understanding of concepts, problems and solutions to concurrent systems are developed through notions of communication, parallelism, live-locks, dead-locks using the CSP notation. The fundamental concepts are illustrated with a variety of applications ranging from simple vending machines to web browsers and security protocols. On completion of the module a student should be able to:

• Describe and specify a concurrent system.

• Model concurrency as an interleaving of events.

• Analyse the behaviour of a concurrent system in terms of semantic models.

• Implement concurrent programs in Java.

• Apply complex concepts in concurrency in the design of specific applications.

Additional outcomes:
Students will have seen a number of useful case study examples illustrating the techniques which can be transported to future areas of study. Students will also be introduced to critical appraisal skills by involving in an activity of reviewing research literature. Courseworks will enhance a student's program implementation skills. Students will also develop new problem solving skills.

Outline content:

• Introduction to Concurrent systems and applications;

• Deterministic Processes (traces model) Communication, Parallelism , Synchronisation (live-locks, deadlocks);

• Non-deterministic Processes (failure-divergences model);

• Sequential Processes (termination, distributed termination);

• Case studies (model based design and implementation);

• Consolidation (other process algebras, links to temporal logic).

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
Lectures and practical coursework to link theory with the practice.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20
Guided independent study 80
Total hours by term 100.00
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 70
Set exercise 30

Other information on summative assessment:

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    One 2-hour examination paper in May/June.

    Requirements for a pass:

    A mark of 40% overall.

    Reassessment arrangements:

    One examination paper of 2 hours duration in August/September - the resit module mark will be the higher of the exam mark (100% exam) and the exam mark plus previous coursework marks (70% exam, 30% coursework).

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 31 March 2017

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