[JSR] [JEP] Java Specification Requirement / Java Enhancement Proposal : 'Parallel OR' and 'Parallel AND'

David Holmes david.holmes at oracle.com
Thu Jul 25 05:33:14 UTC 2019

Hi Prakhar,

The bar for getting new language features added is extremely high - new 
operators even higher I think. New operators for parallelism ... well I 
don't see that ever happening.

I'm not a fan of implicit parallelism like you propose, it simply raises 
too many issues for the system to be able to make good enough judgements 
in all cases. If you want to terminate parallel computations when the 
outcome of the operator has been determined then that gets very messy 
semantically as you basically have a race and can never know which 
computation will complete first, nor how far others got - you would have 
to use expressions that are completely side-effect free for this to not 
be an issue. (And we don't have very good mechanisms for cancelling 
computations in the first place.)

There's also an underlying assumption that parallelising the expression 
and managing that parallelism will actually yield performance benefits, 
but that will only happen if the expressions are each extremely 
computationally intensive. Fibers might eventually change the "sweet 
spot" for such decisions, but in general forking off parallel tasks, 
managing them and combining results has significant overhead.

Such things can already be written using library calls with the ForkJoin 
framework and/or parallel streams (as Bernd mentioned). Firing off a 
task for each sub-expression and then combining the results as desired. 
Having language syntax as a short-hand for that likely appeals to you as 
an end-user, but is less appealing to the language architects etc. As I 
said the bar is very high to get in new language features - parallel 
streams themselves don't have syntactic support.

It is an interesting topic academically at least, but I don't expect you 
will find that much interest here.


On 24/07/2019 10:19 pm, Prakhar Makhija wrote:
> Hi David / All,
> Earlier wanted to discuss just the implementation of 'OR operator', 
> neither 'Conditional OR operator', nor 'Bitwise OR operator'
> Same goes with 'AND operator'
> Technically OR operator and AND operator are just binary operators, 
> that's true
> I don't find it wrong considering there can be n operands, in an 
> expression, with either of the two operators or a combination of both, 
> where n >= 2
> n can go nearby anything in powers of 10, it will take those many 
> sequential clock cycles, to actually resolve the expression
> If you consider the same n as an expression of powers of 2, the same 
> thing can be done in parallel clubbed with divide and conquer, taking 
> the same number of clock cycles, but saving actual response time
> This can be given as a input from console, or as a property, specifying 
> which implementation to use at runtime, sequential or parallel
> But with the latter would lead to very frequent resource starvage, this 
> would need to be handled, to actually free the resources and give to pid 
> or ppid, heirarically, or based upon who is the callee, or who asked who 
> to wait, or some more other logic
> All the threads parallelly evaluating the same expression, with either 
> operand, should be terminated and concluded as, when any thread results to:
> 'true' in case of OR
> 'false' in case of AND
> An expression can have further sub-expressions; so an expression with 
> combination of both operands, will be considered as parent expression
> Yes it does change the conventional implementation of OR operator, and 
> AND operator, in Java
> So it would be better to have two new operators/symbols itself
> Parallel OR
> |||
> Parallel AND
> &&&
> We can go with the symbol |&& also in case of Parallel AND
> Looking forward to hearing your thoughts
> Best Wishes & Regards
> Prakhar Makhija
> ----
> Hi Prakhar,
> On 22/06/2019 1:28 am, Prakhar Makhija wrote:
>  > Topic: OR operator represented by ||
> That should be the subject of your email - not a reply to a digest.
>  > Query: The expression evaluation of the operands, of OR operator, does it
>  > happen in parallel, when Java code runs, in the current versions?
> No, there is no parallel evaluation of anything in Java. It would be
> wrong to do so in this case as:
> "The conditional-or operator || operator is like | (§15.22.2), but
> evaluates its righthand operand only if the value of its left-hand
> operand is false."
> David

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