Hermes (programming language)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Hermes[1] [2] is a language for distributed programming[3] that was developed at IBM's Thomas J. Watson Research Center from 1986 through 1992, with an open-source compiler and run-time system.[4] Hermes' primary features included:[5]

It used typestate analysis to check variables transitions errors, to rule out some semantically non meaningful transitions from one state to another (i.e. starting from a value, some sequences of operations on a variable are nonsensical), of which reading an uninitialized variable is a special case. In this role of compile-time checking of data initialization is similar to definite assignment analysis performed by Java, Cyclone and C#.

Hermes and its predecessor, NIL (Network Implementation Language), were the earliest programming languages supporting this form of initialization checking.[6] Typestate was actually used more extensively, to generate compiler-inserted "delete" operations.


  1. ^ Strom, Robert E.; Bacon, David F; Goldberg, Arthur P.; Lowry, Andy; Yellin, Daniel M.; Yemini, Shaula (1991). Hermes - A Language for Distributed Computing. Englewood Cliffs, NJ, USA: Prentice-Hall. ISBN 978-0-13-389537-7.
  2. ^ Lowry, Andy (1992). "The Hermes language in outline form". ACM SIGPLAN Notices. 27 (8): 51–70. doi:10.1145/142137.142148. ISSN 0362-1340. S2CID 28615424.
  3. ^ Strom, R.E. (1990). "Hermes: an integrated language and system for distributed programming". IEEE Workshop on Experimental Distributed Systems. pp. 75–82. doi:10.1109/EDS.1990.138054. S2CID 10223422.
  4. ^ Bacon, David F.; Lowry, Andy (1990). A Portable Run-time System for the Hermes Distributed Programming Language. USENIX Summer Technical Conference. Anaheim, California, USA: Usenix Association. pp. 39–50.
  5. ^ Korfhage, Willard; Goldberg, Arthur P. (1995). "Hermes language experiences" (PDF). Software: Practice and Experience. 25 (4): 389–402. CiteSeerX doi:10.1002/spe.4380250404. ISSN 0038-0644. S2CID 30437763. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2005-05-26. Retrieved 2009-08-27.
  6. ^ Strom, Robert E. (1983). "Mechanisms for compile-time enforcement of security". Proceedings of the 10th ACM SIGACT-SIGPLAN symposium on Principles of programming languages - POPL '83. pp. 276–284. doi:10.1145/567067.567093. ISBN 978-0897910903. S2CID 6630704.