Move trace

Move trace tutorial

In this tutorial we will run a simple "move trace" and use the output to get a picture of what the Arvo kernel proper does during the routine task of setting a timer. Some level of familiarity with the kernel is required for this section, which can be obtained in our Arvo kernel tutorial.

Running a move trace

Ultimately, everything that happens in Arvo is reduced to Unix events, and the Arvo kernel acts as a sort of traffic cop for vanes and apps to talk to one another. Here we look at how a simple command, -time ~s1, goes from pressing Enter on your keyboard in Dojo towards returning a notification that one second has elapsed.

To follow along yourself, boot up a fake ~zod and enter |verb into the dojo and press Enter to enable verbose mode (this is tracked by the laconic bit introduced in the section on the state) in the kernel documentation, followed by -time ~s1 followed by Enter. Your terminal should pretty print a series of moves that looks something like this:

["" %unix p=%belt //term/1 ~2020.1.14..19.01.25..7556]
["|" %pass [%d %g] [[%deal [~zod ~zod] %hood %poke] /] [i=//term/1 t=~]]
["||" %pass [%g %g] [[%deal [~zod ~zod] %dojo %poke] /use/hood/~zod/out/~zod/dojo/drum/phat/~zod/dojo] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]
["|||" %give %g [%unto %fact] [i=/g/use/hood/~zod/out/~zod/dojo/drum/phat/~zod/dojo t=~[/d //term/1]]]
["||||" %give %g [%unto %fact] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]
["|||||" %give %d %blit [i=//term/1 t=~]]
["|||" %pass [%g %f] [%build /use/dojo/~zod/drum/hand] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]
["||||" %give %f %made [i=/g/use/dojo/~zod/drum/hand t=~[/d //term/1]]]
["|||||" %pass [%g %g] [[%deal [~zod ~zod] %spider %watch] /use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]
["||||||" %give %g [%unto %watch-ack] [i=/g/use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool t=~[/d //term/1]]]
["|||||" %pass [%g %g] [[%deal [~zod ~zod] %spider %poke] /use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]
//term/1]]]
["||||||" %pass [%g %f] [%build /use/spider/~zod/find/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]
["|||||||" %give %f %made [i=/g/use/spider/~zod/find/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u t=~[/d //term/1]]]
["||||||||" %pass [%g %f] [%build /use/spider/~zod/build/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]
["|||||||||" %give %f %made [i=/g/use/spider/~zod/build/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u t=~[/d //term/1]]]
["||||||||||" %pass [%g %b] [%wait /use/spider/~zod/thread/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u/wait/~2020.1.14..19.01.26..7556] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]
["|||||||||||" %give %b %doze [i=//behn/0v1p.sn2s7 t=~]]
> -time ~s1

followed by a pause of one second, then

["" %unix p=%wake //behn ~2020.1.14..19.01.26..755d]
["|" %give %b %doze [i=//behn/0v1p.sn2s7 t=~]]
["|" %give %b %wake [i=/g/use/spider/~zod/thread/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u/wait/~2020.1.14..19.01.26..7556 t=~[/d //term/1]]]
["||" %give %g [%unto %fact] [i=/g/use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool t=~[/d //term/1]]]
["|||" %give %g [%unto %fact] [i=/g/use/hood/~zod/out/~zod/dojo/drum/phat/~zod/dojo t=~[/d //term/1]]]
["||||" %give %g [%unto %fact] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]
["|||||" %give %d %blit [i=//term/1 t=~]]
["||" %give %g [%unto %kick] [i=/g/use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool t=~[/d //term/1]]]
~s1..0007

This gives us a move trace that is a list of moves and some associated metadata. Some of the moves are a bit of a distraction from what's going on overall such as acknowledgements that a poke was received (%poke-acks), so we've omitted them for clarity. Furthermore, two moves (the %blit cards) is not printed even in verbose mode because it occurs so frequently, but there are only two of them here and so we have added it in.

The main process that is occurring here is a sequence of %pass moves initiated by pressing Enter in the terminal that goes on to be handled by Dill, then Gall, and finally Behn. After the timer has elapsed, a sequence of %give moves is begun by Behn, which then passes through Gall and ultimately ends up back at the terminal. Any moves besides %pass in the first segment of the move trace is a secondary process utilized for book-keeping, spawning processes, interpreting commands, etc. All of this will be explained in detail below.

It is important to note that this move trace should be thought of as being from the "point of view" of the kernel - each line represents the kernel taking in a message from one source and passing it along to its destination. It is then processed at that destination (which could be a vane or an app), and the return of that process is sent back to Arvo in the form of another move to perform and the loop begins again. Thus this move trace does not display information about what is going on inside of the vane or app such as private function calls, only what the kernel itself sees.

Interpreting the move trace

In this section we will go over the move trace line-by-line, explaining how the move trace is printed, what each line means (including some things not found in the move trace), and a particular focus on what code is being activated in the first few lines that should equip you well enough to unravel the rest of the move trace in as much detail as you desire.

The call

Let's put the first part of the move trace into a diagram to make following along a little easier.

Here, each arrow represents the passing of some information, with most of it being from vane to vane. Here, when Vane A has an arrow to a card and then an arrow to Vane B, this represents either a %pass note/task sequence or a %give gift/sign sequence that actually has the Arvo kernel in the middle. That is to say, Vane A %passes a note to the Arvo kernel addressed to Vane B, and the Arvo kernel then %passes a task to Vane B. For more information, see the Arvo kernel tutorial.

This simple action ends up involving four vanes - Dill, Gall, Behn, and Ford - as well as four applications - hood, spider, dojo, and time.

Now let's go through each line one by one.

["" %unix p=%belt //term/1 ~2020.1.14..19.01.25..7556]

This tells us that Unix has sent a %belt card, which corresponds to terminal input (the Enter keystroke) at time ~2020.1.14..19.01.25..7556

Here is the line of code in arvo.hoon, found in the section 3bE core, that generated the output:

    ~?  !lac  ["" %unix -.q.ovo p.ovo now]

First we note that this line is executed only if the laconic bit is set to true, as we did when we input |verb. Here, ovo is the input ovum. Knowing that an ovum is a [p=wire q=curd], we can then say that this is a %unix move tagged with %belt whose cause is a wire given by //term/1, where the empty span // represents Unix and term/1 represents the terminal in Unix. Here we have a wire instead of a duct (i.e. a list of wires) since Unix I/O events are always the beginning and end of the Arvo event loop, thus only a single wire is ever required at this initial stage.

The "" here is a metadatum that keeps track of how many steps deep in the causal chain the event is. An event with n |'s was caused by the most recent previous event with n-1 |'s. In this case, Unix events are an "original cause" and thus represented by an empty string.

At this point in time, Dill has received the move and then processes it. The %belt task in dill.hoon is +called, which is processed using the +send arm:

      ++  send                                          ::  send action
        |=  bet/dill-belt
        ^+  +>
        ?^  tem
          +>(tem `[bet u.tem])
        (deal / [%poke [%dill-belt -:!>(bet) bet]])

Dill has taken in the command and in response it %passes a task card with instructions to %poke hood, which is a Gall app primarily used for interfacing with Dill. Here, +deal is an arm for %passing a card to Gall to ask it to create a %deal task:

      ++  deal                                          ::  pass to %gall
        |=  [=wire =deal:gall]
        (pass wire [%g %deal [our our] ram deal])

Next in our move trace we have this:

["|" %pass [%d %g] [[%deal [~zod ~zod] %hood %poke] /] [i=//term/1 t=~]]

Here, Dill %passes a task card saying to %poke Gall's hood app (with the Enter keystroke).

Let's glance at part of the +jack arm in arvo.hoon, located in the section 3bE core. This arm is what the Arvo kernel uses to send cards, and here we look at the segment that includes %pass moves.

  ++  jack                                              ::  dispatch card
    |=  [lac=? gum=muse]
    ^-  [[p=(list ovum) q=(list muse)] _vanes]
    ~|  %failed-jack
    ::  =.  lac  |(lac ?=(?(%g %f) p.gum))
    ::  =.  lac  &(lac !?=($b p.gum))
    %^    fire
        p.gum
      s.gum
    ?-    -.r.gum
        $pass
      ~?  &(!lac !=(%$ p.gum))
        :-  (runt [s.gum '|'] "")
        :^  %pass  [p.gum p.q.r.gum]
          ?:  ?=(?(%deal %deal-gall) +>-.q.q.r.gum)
            :-  :-  +>-.q.q.r.gum
                (,[[ship ship] term term] [+>+< +>+>- +>+>+<]:q.q.r.gum)
            p.r.gum
          [(symp +>-.q.q.r.gum) p.r.gum]
        q.gum
      [p.q.r.gum ~ [[p.gum p.r.gum] q.gum] q.q.r.gum]

Code for writing traces can be a bit tricky, but let's try not to get too distracted by the lark expressions and such. By paying attention to the lines concerning the laconic bit (following !lac) we can mostly determine what is being told to us.

From the initial input event, Arvo has generated a card that it is now %passing from Dill (represented by %d) to Gall (represented by %g). The card is a %deal task, asking Gall to %poke hood using data that has originated from the terminal //term/1, namely that the Enter key was pressed. The line :- (runt [s.gum '|'] "") displays the causal chain length metadatum mentioned above. Lastly, [~zod ~zod] tells us that ~zod is both the sending and receiving ship.

From here on our explanations will be more brief. We include some information that cannot be directly read from the move trace in [brackets]. Onto the next line:

["||" %pass [%g %g] [[%deal [~zod ~zod] %dojo %poke] /use/hood/~zod/out/~zod/dojo/drum/phat/~zod/dojo] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]

Here is another %pass move, this time from Gall to iself as denoted by [%g %g]. Gall's hood has received the %deal card from Dill, and in response it is %pokeing dojo with the information [that Enter was pressed].

["|||" %give %g [%unto %fact] [i=/g/use/hood/~zod/out/~zod/dojo/drum/phat/~zod/dojo t=~[/d //term/1]]]

Gall's dojo %gives a gift with a %fact (subscription update) to Gall's hood, [saying to clear the terminal prompt].

["||||" %give %g [%unto %fact] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]

Gall's hood %gives a gift with a %fact to Dill [saying to replace the current terminal line with ~zod:dojo>]

Next is the move that is not actually printed in the move trace mentioned above:

["|||||" %give %d %blit [i=//term/1 t=~]]

Dill %gives a %blit (terminal output) event to Unix [saying to replace the current terminal line with ~zod:dojo>].

["|||" %pass [%g %f] [%build /use/dojo/~zod/drum/hand] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]

Gall's dojo also %passes a %build request to Ford [asking to run "~s1" against the subject we use in the dojo].

["||||" %give %f %made [i=/g/use/dojo/~zod/drum/hand t=~[/d //term/1]]]

Ford %gives a result back to dojo [with the value ~s1]

["|||||" %pass [%g %g] [[%deal [~zod ~zod] %spider %watch] /use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]

Gall's dojo %passes a %watch to Gall's spider app [to start listening for the result of the thread it's about to start].

["||||||" %give %g [%unto %watch-ack] [i=/g/use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool t=~[/d //term/1]]]

Gall's spider acknowledges the subscription from dojo.

["|||||" %pass [%g %g] [[%deal [~zod ~zod] %spider %poke] /use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]

Gall's dojo also %passes a %poke to Gall's spider [asking it start the thread "-time" with argument ~s1].

["||||||" %pass [%g %f] [%build /use/spider/~zod/find/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]

Gall's spider %passes a %build request to Ford [asking it to find the path in /ted where the "time" thread is].

["|||||||" %give %f %made [i=/g/use/spider/~zod/find/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u t=~[/d //term/1]]]

Ford %gives a result back to Gall's spider [saying it's in /ted/time.hoon].

["||||||||" %pass [%g %f] [%build /use/spider/~zod/build/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]

Gall's spider %passes a %build request to Ford [asking it to compile the file /ted/time.hoon].

["|||||||||" %give %f %made [i=/g/use/spider/~zod/build/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u t=~[/d //term/1]]]

Ford %gives a result back to Gall's spider [with the compiled thread].

["||||||||||" %pass [%g %b] [%wait /use/spider/~zod/thread/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u/wait/~2020.1.14..19.01.26..7556] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]

Gall's spider's thread with id ~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u asks Behn to set a timer [for one second].

["|||||||||||" %give %b %doze [i=//behn/0v1p.sn2s7 t=~]]

Behn %gives a %doze card to Unix, asking it to set a timer [for one second from now]. At this point Arvo may rest.

The return

Now Unix sets a timer for one second, waits one second, and then informs Behn that a second has passed, leading to a chain of %give moves that ultimately prints ~s1..0007.

Let's throw the move trace into a table:

lengthmovevane(s)cardduct
0%unix%wake//behn
1%give%b%doze//behn/0v1p.sn2s7
1%give%b%wake/g/use/spider/~zod/thread/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u/wait/~2020.1.14..19.01.26..7556 /d //term/1
2%give%g[%unto %fact]/g/use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool /d //term/1
3%give%g[%unto %fact]/g/use/hood/~zod/out/~zod/dojo/drum/phat/~zod/dojo /d //term/1
4%give%g[%unto %fact]/d //term/1
5%give%d%blit//term/1
2%give%g[%unto %kick]/g/use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool /d //term/1

Now we follow it line-by-line:

["" %unix p=%wake //behn ~2020.1.14..19.01.26..755d]

Unix sends a %wake (timer fire) card at time ~2020.1.14..19.01.26..755d.

["|" %give %b %doze [i=//behn/0v1p.sn2s7 t=~]]

Behn %gives a %doze card to Unix, asking it to set a timer [for whatever next timer it has in its queue].

["|" %give %b %wake [i=/g/use/spider/~zod/thread/~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u/wait/~2020.1.14..19.01.26..7556 t=~[/d //term/1]]]

Behn %gives a %wake to Gall's spider's thread with id ~.dojo_0v6.210tt.1sme1.ev3qm.qgv2e.a754u.

["||" %give %g [%unto %fact] [i=/g/use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool t=~[/d //term/1]]]

Gall's spider %gives a %fact (subscription update) to dojo [saying that the thread completed successfully and produced value ~s1.0007].

["|||" %give %g [%unto %fact] [i=/g/use/hood/~zod/out/~zod/dojo/drum/phat/~zod/dojo t=~[/d //term/1]]]

Gall's dojo %gives a %fact to hood [saying to output ~s1..0007].

["||||" %give %g [%unto %fact] [i=/d t=~[//term/1]]]

Gall's hood %gives a %fact to Dill [saying to output ~s1..0007].

["|||||" %give %d %blit [i=//term/1 t=~]]

Dill %gives a %blit (terminal output) event to Unix [saying to print a new line with output ~s1..0007].

["||" %give %g [%unto %kick] [i=/g/use/dojo/~zod/out/~zod/spider/drum/wool t=~[/d //term/1]]]

Gall's spider also closes the subscription from dojo [since the thread has completed].