Consistency Types for Safe and Efficient Distributed Programming
Consistency is a long-standing problem in distributed systems. Low consistency levels are considered a necessity for scalability. High consistency is required for critical tasks such as payment and identification. Modern (geo-)distributed systems rely on the data propagation mechanisms and consistency guarantees of the distributed data store they build upon, which makes the implementation of a system that mixes different levels of consistency complex and error prone. In this paper, we present preliminary work on ConSysT, a programming language that supports heterogeneous consistency specifications at the type level. In ConSysT, developers assign consistency levels directly to the data and type system ensures the correct behavior of the application even with computations that mix data at multiple consistency levels. Our vision is that the ConSysT runtime automatically determines the most efficient mechanism to achieve the desired level of consistency among those offered by the underlying data store.
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