Node-fiber NOTE OF OBSOLESCENCE

Interesting. This presentation also contains some slides where benjmn explains why mimicking Fibers with async/await (as I was hoping for) might be a bad idea. But maybe this could only be restricted to Meteor’s pseudo-synchronous API?

I do have a question.
I remember the days when you could meteor deploy your app for free.
I know Galaxy has free hosting for a period of time, and that there are business reasons behind charging for it but if personally, I could deploy my Meteor apps just like I do with my Netlify ones that would be really really awesome.

Is the free hosting ever making a comeback? (sorry if this was asked before)

At this point in my career I would be able to actually spend the money on a tiny container for my side project apps, but it is a fact that early on and for a lot of people in my country this would represent making a sacrifice somewhere to get that going. I hope I make sense.

Still rooting for Meteor, thanks for all the hard work!

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This post above explains it

Yes, I saw that, but I thought it was pretty cryptic. To me, coroutines and async/await do not look that different. When you set an await statement, this is pretty much the same as placing a yield. Ok, the await returns the result of the async operation, while a yield typically returns something comparable to a Promise. But actually, the async op returns a Promise, too, which you can see if you don’t await the call. So the await it’s more or less syntactic sugar (plus it allows to try/catch the statement). Maybe he was relating to the special form of Meteor‘s fibers that also hold some Meteor-specific state?

Coroutines is something that doesn’t exists in Node.js codebase, the closest native implementation is Worker Threads.

At the same time Fibers “C-extension” brings coroutines implementation to Node.js allowing blocking in separate “fibers” (e.g. threads), as well as assigning context/state to a “thread”.

As I understand initially Fibers were used to solve two Node.js issues:

  1. Session context/state on server (needed to maintain DDP/WebSocket “private” sessions);
  2. Parallelization (e.g. multi-thread).

Thread blocking was a bonus-feature in that case. Having done() as a last argument in methods, or this.ready() as we have in subscriptions, or support returning Promise from method would ease transition to asynchronous implementation.

Hope that helps to understand coroutines and what tasks were solved using it.

Feel free to jump in if I’m wrong or missed something.

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Very good summary @dr.dimitru. If someone wants a deeper dive, there is this article on how async/await differs from coroutines. Uses Go’s goroutines for comparison. https://danoctavian.com/2019/03/25/thinking-coroutines-nodejs/

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An issue I always have with async/await is if the function is deep into a series of function calls. Using async/await require transforming the entire function hierarchy into async.

Seems like this is a clear advantage of fibers. I think moving to workers will have the same issue (but I just used them sparingly and not much adept with it)

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There’s no magic in async/await, nor in Promises, — it’s just a way to write asynchronous code which looks like synchronous, more readable, and potentially easier to maintain.

With node.js Workers idea is to block the thread until Worker returns response, for example with while loop.

I believe if one of the major Meteor releases will introduce support for asynchronous Methods — there will be no need for thread blocking in its core.

And use node.js Workers for parallelization and “context(ed) threads”.

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That would be truly awesome.

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How different would it be with either this.unblock() or Meteor.defer()?

Doesn’t Node support generators? That‘s how Unity implements coroutines on top of C#.

By default you can run only single Meteor.Method on the Client, calling this.unblock() would simply allow to call another Client-to->Server method(s) in parallel.

Meteor.defer() is a wrapper for process.nextTick on the Server and setTimeout on the Client, made to provide isomorphic API across platforms, and would take care of “running inside Fiber”.

Yes. Generators won’t solve this (generators doesn’t run in parallel to main thread):

Think of generators as of stateful functions with ability to stop in the middle of a function, best example is DB’s cursors.

I can’t say much at this point but we are working in this direction :wink:

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This. Would. Be. Freaking. Awesome.