actor-framework-messages is a set of message types for use with the LabVIEW Actor Framework. The messages included in this package solve common messaging problems with simple, robust, and testable messaging patterns. You can use these messages with any Actor types (no special inheritance necessary) letting you preserve a compositional application design.
There is nothing especially magical about these messages--they are sub-patterns of Command Pattern (i.e. Actor Framework) messaging that evolved from years of Actor Framework development. If you use and understand the standard Time-Delayed Message (and limitations thereof), then you might appreciate the functionality provided in this package.
This message type allows automatically cycling (repeating) a message but avoids the common problems with Time-Delayed Send Message, like:
MessageCycle lets you send (and then automatically resend) a message to an Actor in a cyclic, but not phase-maintained, cycle. The cycle allows waits between iterations without blocking the Actor's thread while waiting. MessageCycle also allows timing out of the cycle with a pre-defined action upon timeout (programmer can inject a final timeout message to ensure the cycle has a determinable end). Similar to the Time-Delayed Send, starting a cycle returns a Notifier reference that allows external cancelation of the cycle.
Why would I use this? Because you want to repeat a message, (optionally) guarantee cleanup at cycle end, guarantee not stacking the Actor queue, and you don't care about maintaining regular periodicity (the same reason you would use 'Wait (ms)' instead of 'Wait Until Next ms Multiple').
This message type could be called many things, but its name is (I think) the most concise way to describe the behavior: I'm an Actor --> I provide a RoundTripMessage object to another Actor --> Upon execution, that message comes back to me. This message does not proxy or adapt another message--it makes the round trip as one message object--and it is the simplest (and inheritance-based) implementation of abstract messaging. To use it, you must implement your own Pack/Send method and also override Do.vi to invoke something concrete in one of the recipients. It might even be too simple to be widely useful. You decide!
Why would I use this? Because you want to program a dependency-inverted concrete exchange between two Actors. Pre-Interface (LV 2020), this task requires inheritance.
This message adapts any Message.lvclass to carry a return addressed and be returnable with the minimum possible API (NO concrete 'Do.vi'). The adapter message (the wrapper itself) is not typically sent anywhere--it is meant to be dependency-inected and the adapted message gets returned to the addressed party. Small change of lingo, huge improvement in transparency of use. This message type could be extended to implement 'Do.vi' if ping messages are, like, your jam.
Why would I use this? Because you want a return message (i.e. callback) when something happens remotely without relying on inheritance.
Sometimes you want to stop RIGHT AWAY, but it's not an emergency, finishing queued async work before stopping. This message type exposes the message priority of standard Actor Framework Stop Msg via one extra 'Send' method.
Why would I use this? Because you want to stop an Actor before it processes additional queued work, but it's not an emergency.
All notable changes to this project will be documented in this file.
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